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Showing posts from December, 2015

Burmese translation of Journal Issue on Religion

A Burmese translation of a journal issue on Religion, Law and Society in Myanmar has recently been made available online. You can find the Burmese text of the issue of  The Review of Faith & International Affairs   here . The volume includes the following articles Melissa Crouch, “Constructing Religion by Law in Myanmar” Tharaphi Than, “Nationalism, Religion, and Violence: Old and New Wunthanu Movements in Myanmar” Susan Hayward, “The Double-Edged Sword of ‘Buddhist Democracy’ in Myanmar Matthew J. Walton, Melyn McKay, and Daw Khin Mar Mar Kyi, “Women and Myanmar’s ‘Religious Protection Laws’” Nyi Nyi Kyaw, “Alienation, Discrimination, and Securitization: Legal Personhood and Cultural Personhood of Muslims in Myanmar” Benedict Rogers, “The Contribution of Christianity to Myanmar’s Social and Political Development” Saw Hlaing Bwa, “Why Interfaith Dialogue is Essential for Myanmar’s Future”

Asian Constitutional Law Forum 2015

Next week NUS will host the  Asian Constitutional Law Forum on 10-11 December 2015. The workshop  provides a venue for distinguished scholars and new scholars to share their research and ideas on Asian constitutional law, to expand collaborative research networks, and to facilitate publications. The 2015 Forum, organised by the Centre for Asian Legal Studies will address the theme of constitutionalism in the courts, and will look at constitutional cases, issues, and overall performance of the judicial branch across Asia as judiciaries establish their independence of the other branches and encounter new and challenging issues.  The Forum was first held at the Seoul National University, Korea in 2005; the second meeting was at the Centre for Asian Legal Exchange at Nagoya University in 2007; the third at the College of Law of National Taiwan University in 2009; the fourth at the Centre for Comparative and Public Law at the Faculty of Law, University of Hong Kong in 2011; and the fif

Business economics and reform in Myanmar

Last Friday 27 November, UNSW Law hosted a workshop on The Business of Transition in Myanmar , coordinated by UNSW Law's Dr Melissa Crouch. The workshop brought together leading scholars from UNSW, and from institutions around Australia and overseas. This timely workshop not only addressed a key issue facing Myanmar, but one that is of direct relevance to Australia: how will the mix of humanitarian aid, economic diplomacy and foreign investment contribute to Myanmar’s reform process? Dr Crouch noted, “Myanmar offers an opportunity for us to reflect on the importance of aid, economic diplomacy and foreign investment, and the challenges of making this work in the interests of local communities.” The success of the National League for Democracy (NLD) in the recent 2015 elections in Myanmar will inevitably increase the level of aid, trade and foreign investment. Yet as the NLD prepares to take office in 2016, it will confront a bewildering arrange of economic and soci

Interview on religious freedom in Indonesia

Indonesia has struggled with religious violence in the democratic era. The problem was highlighted once again in October, with an  attack on a Christian community in Aceh Singkil (link is external) . Following the attack, Religious Affairs Minister Lukman Hakim Saifuddin acknowledged that there were problems with current regulations on the construction of houses of worship and said that there was a need to evaluate the policy. Dr Melissa Crouch has examined this policy, and others, in her book  Law and Religion in Indonesia: Conflict and the Courts in West Java (link is external) , published by Routledge in 2014.  Indonesia at Melbourne  spoke to Melissa about the state of religious freedom in the country. Last month, the Setara Institute released a list of the most tolerant – and  intolerant (link is external)  – cities in Indonesia. Many of the most intolerant cities were located in West Java, and the province consistently tops the nation for the highest numbers of violations

Persecution of Muslims in Myanmar Misunderstood by the West

The debate on asylum seekers from Myanmar in Australia is ill-informed and skewed. The Australian government and international community must realise that refugee status is first of all not about ethnicity or identity, but about a well-founded fear of persecution. Reports that a man who has been  moved by Australia to Cambodia  may have been misidentified as Rohingya  misses the point. Even if the man is not Rohingya, it is still possible that he has a well-founded fear of persecution as a Muslim fleeing from Myanmar. Since 2012, the anti-Muslim violence has affected a range of Muslim communities in towns right across Myanmar. The violence has not just affected Muslims who may identify as Rohingya. Muslim businesses have been targeted. Mosques burnt down, damaged and closed. Homes of Muslim families destroyed. Many Muslims have been injured and some killed. Muslims face discrimination in educational and employment opportunities. This is not new, but has a long history in Mya

UNSW HKU Conference 2015

This coming Friday and Saturday UNSW Law and HKU Law will be holding a research symposium at UNSW Kensington Campus, Sydney. A session on ' Comparative Constitutional Interpretation: Asia & Beyond ' will be held on Friday morning together with Rosalind Dixon (UNSW), Melissa Crouch (UNSW), Theunis Roux (UNSW), Po-Jen Yap (HKU) and Jianlin Chen (HKU).