In Rakhine State, the Rohingya minority continues to face state-sponsored repression and suffer in dire conditions in IDP camps and other areas, which has given way to a regional refugee crisis.
Despite a limited ceasefire agreement, ethnic conflict and violence continues in Kachin and Northern Shan, Karen, and Mon States.
Parliament has adopted new legislation to restrict freedom of religion and entrench discrimination against the Muslim minority group.
Introduction Myanmar has seen significant political and economic change after a quasi-civilian government was introduced in 2010 and almost fifty years of military rule came to an official end.However, with the 2015 election approaching the reform process has regressed, and authorities are increasingly restricting and abusing fundamental rights to silence those who monitor and speak out against the ruling Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP) and the military.Restrictions on freedom of religion and freedom of expression, association, and assembly persist.The government actively suppresses perceived dissent, and the space for human rights defenders to operate effectively and without fear of reprisal is diminishing.Despite nationwide calls by both the National League of Democracy (NLD) and key civil society actors, the government has not allowed key constitutional amendments, casting serious doubts about its sincerity to relinquishing military control and holding free and fair elections.
Notably, the constitution allows the military to exercise full veto power on constitutional changes.
The constitution also bars opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi from the presidency.
The Union Election Commission (UEC) has been accused of influencing elections in favour of the ruling party and intimidating the opposition.
Additionally, the UEC has stated that it can only guarantee the accuracy of 30% of the voter lists.
The withdrawal of so-called white cards, temporary identification cards, has led to systemic exclusion of the Rohingya from the electoral process, further entrenching discrimination and segregation.
The Situation for Human Rights Defenders in Myanmar Since 2010, the space for those working on human rights and issues of social justice has become considerably wider than it had been during authoritarian military rule.