The Indonesian Journal of International & Comparative Law Volume I Issue 3 (2014) at 768–807
II. HISTORY OF BURMA
Burma is a country located in Southeast Asia that is bordered by ailand,
Laos, China, India, and Bangladesh. Burma’s current population is
estimated in excess of 55 million.2 e Burmese people comprise the
largest ethnic group in the modern state and account for approximately
68 percent of the total population.3 Other ethnic nationality groups
inhabit individual regions or states throughout Burma. ese minority
groups form individual states, such as the Shan, Karen, Rakhine, Arakin,
Chin, Kachin, Karenni, and Mon—among others.4
Prior to the nineteenth century, Burma was a compilation of multiple
territories existing under the rule of various ethnic groups.5 In 1824,
the British commenced a military initiative to seize control of Burma
and eventually colonized the country in 1885.6 During World War II,
Japan seized control of Burma by forming a coalition with the Burma
Independence Army, which was led by General Aung San.7 However,
the quest to form an independent country led Burmese leaders to form
the Anti-Fascist People’s Freedom League (“AFPFL”). Ironically, with
assistance from the British, the AFPFL nally liberated Burma from
Japan’s clutches in 1945.8 Following WWII, the British resisted the initial
calls for independence by the Burmese nationalists; however, they later
acquiesced, due to eorts by General Aung San in forming an alliance
2. Burma, in T CIA W F, C I A, available
(last updated Mar. 26, 2013).
4. Id.; Ethnic Nationalities Council (Union of Burma), (Apr. 4, 2013), available
at http://www.encburma.net/index.php/about-enc.html; see also, e Special
Rapporteur of the Commission on Human Rights on the situation of human
rights in Myanmar, Report on the situation of human rights in Myanmar in
accordance with Commission resolution 1992/58, U.N. Doc. E/CN.4/1993/37,
para. 10 (Feb. 17, 1993) [hereinafter Special Rapporteur 1993].
5. J S, B, M R P S
6. Id. at 5-6.
7. C F, L S: B U M R 21 (2001).
8. Burma Prole: Timeline—A chronology of key events, Asia-Pacic, BBC N, (Apr.
2, 2013, 8:00 AM), http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-pacic-12992883
[hereinafter Burma Prole].