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Myanmar military to return little land

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Bangkok Post

Myanmar's military will return no more than 6% of the land it confiscated during two decades of junta rule, media reports said on Wednesday.

Responding to growing criticism about land grabs by the army during 1988-2010, Defence Minister Lieutenant General Wai Lwin told parliament on Tuesday that the army was ready to return only 18,300 acres (7,412 hectares).

The minister acknowledged that the army had confiscated more than 297,000 acres throughout the country under the junta, The New Light of Myanmar reported.

Confiscations were legalised by the 1963 Land Acquisition Act, which nationalised land across the country for economic projects, industrial zones and army bases or to expand urban areas.

The law was part of former military strongman General Ne Win's socialist economic policy that dragged Myanmar down from the most prosperous country in South-East Asia after the Second World War to least-developed status by 1988.

Between 1988 to 2010, the regime continued to confiscate land for army bases and agricultural use by soldiers' families.

A general election in 2010 brought the pro-military Union Solidarity and Development Party to power.

The land issue has become a topic of discussion in Parliament amid growing protests by farmers and others who lost their property to the military, government-run projects or private companies during decades of military rule.
Source link: http://www.bangkokpost.com/breakingnews/360313/myanmar-military-to-return-6-of-land-confiscated-by-junta

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