Student protests: apparent breakthrough reached in Rangoon

Late night group discussion. A fellow Burmese youth volunteer comes in the room slightly sobbing. Two of her friends had smiles on their face, the kind of smile you know something good has happened.

Students all over Myanmar has been marching since mid January, some as far as 600km, to come to Yangon. They came marching to protest against the recent announcement that the government is considering changes to the National Education Bill, which restricts the formation of student unions and creates a commission to oversee the country’s education system. This would create restrictions especially in freedom of education in universities.

Tonight, the Myanmar government and students have apparently reached some sort of agreement. The points of reform is still waiting parliamentary approval. Regardless of the outcome, which we hope would be a positive one, my friends continue silently smiling.. Because we know change is definitely happening in this country.


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