Network Myanmar is a new association that has been formed to “to assist the process of reconciliation and rehabilitation in a country which has suffered so grievously ever since it gained its independence from Britain on 4 January 1948”.

The website of Network Myanmar is still not fully operational but it is starting to take shape. New Mandala readers looking for involvement with what is, without apology, a “pro-engagement” lobby, should check it out. They are looking for “members” and “friends”. And, as they say, “We believe that attempts to ostracize, isolate and punish Myanmar only serve to deprive the Burmese people of the necessary resources, tools and opportunities to address their existing day-to-day needs and to live in security and prosperity”.

The Chairman of the organisation is Derek Tonkin, the former British Ambassador to Thailand. I first mentioned Tonkin on New Mandala in light of his position on the coup in Thailand back in September 2006. It is also relevant that he recently published a scholarly article on Burma’s 1990 elections. That article, or at least its abstract, is certainly worth a look for anybody considering joining this new association.