As the world’s focus has shifted onto the situation in Ukraine, we are still trying to overcome the dark shadows caused by the military coup.
Myanmar (the military) wants to celebrate the Water Festival this month and is trying everything to carry out the celebrations, forcing businessmen to participate and collecting money from the population, although they probably have no money themselves. Shwe Yee told me that each family had to give 1000 Kyat ($ 0.50). That doesn't sound like much, but after two years of suffering from COVID and the coup, many families are up to their necks in water, and it certainly won't get any better in the coming weeks or months. Even if the military reopens the country's borders as of April 18. To get tourism going again, the quarantine period for all arrivals has been reduced from 7 days to 5 days. But for whom? I can't imagine anyone wanting to spend their vacation in Myanmar under the current circumstances. Daily nationwide bombings of military installations, government facilities, police stations and executions of informants. This picture has not changed in recent weeks, hundreds of PDF groups (people's defense forces) have inflicted heavy losses on the military and has successfully taken control in several areas. The vengeful soldiers, vent their frustrations on the population, move from village to village, murdering, stealing and then burning everything down.
The situation is deadlocked, with none of the sides willing to negotiate. How long this movement can be kept alive depends not only on the population, but also on the international community, because in addition to sympathy and sanctions against the military, we need financial support so that we can provide financial assistance to our striking officials and equip the PDF groups with better weapons. Fine words alone will not help us win.
It will take more time as anticipated, but we are still very confident that we will overcome the difficulties we are facing right now and that we will be able to open our office again, to do what we like most:
To organize tailor made tours and introduce tourists to an extraordinary country with golden pagodas, beautiful landscapes and graceful people.
Shwe Yee & Klaus-Dieter Mueller