Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Tension between junta and KIO; DVB TV aired on KIO TV

Written by KNG

Growing tension between the Kachin Independence Organization (KIO) and the Burmese ruling junta was evident at the surprise airing of the Norway-based Democratic Voice of Burma Television also called DVB TV, which is pro-democracy, on the Kachin ceasefire group controlled TV in Burma's northern Kachin State, said local sources.

Laiza TV, run by the KIO has included the DVB TV channel in the KIO's HQ Laiza Muklum on the orders of Maj-Gen Gunhtang Gam Shawng, Chief of Staff of the Kachin Independence Army (KIA) and the armed wing of KIO since May 10, said residents in Laiza.

After the KIA was officially informed to transform to a battalion of the "Border Security Force" by the junta's Northern Command commander Brig-Gen Soe Win on April 28 in Myitkyina, the capital of Kachin State, the DVB TV has been ordered to be aired on Laiza TV.

In the past, the airing of DVB TV was banned on Laiza TV by KIO senior leaders because they (not) supported the junta’s National Convention and Referendum on the country's new constitution. It was felt that the DVB TV would harm the relation between the KIO and the junta, said KIO officials in Laiza.

The DVB TV channel is one of a total of 35 different TV channels on Laiza TV including the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC), Central China Television (CCTV), the Burmese junta-run televisions. The DVB TV is included in the top ten most favourite channels of subscribers, said local subscribers.

Laiza TV also telecasts news about KIO and KIA every evening and night between 4 p.m. and 8 p.m., according to subscribers.

At the moment, Laiza TV has over 700 subscribers and they are mainly KIO/A residents, ordinary civilian residents and guest subscribers, said Laiza TV authorities. The monthly service fee for Laiza Cable TV is 25 Chinese Yuan (US $3.7) per TV, added subscribers.

The Laiza TV began to broadcast in 2004 and the first time, the TV programmes are aired by TV aerials, said residents of Laiza.

Meanwhile, the KIO leaders are trying to form a "Peace Mediator Group" in order to negotiate the transformation of its armed wing KIA with the ruling junta, said KIO leaders.

At the same time, the KIO Central Committee is receiving many letters of suggestion, advice and opinion and comments from Kachins from both Burma and around the world expressing disagreement on the proposal to transform KIA to a "Border Security Force," according to KIO sources.

KIO leaders have promised that they will listen to the Kachin people's suggestion regarding the transformation of KIA ordered by the Burmese junta.

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