Myanmar's reformist government is under fire for its brutal crackdown on peaceful protests against the copper mining project in Monywa, Sagaing Division. The police action, which left several monks seriously injured, has enraged the Myanmar public. Far from crushing resistance to the project, it has set the stage for even more intense opposition.
But even before the crackdown last week, many in Myanmar were deeply opposed to the mining project, not simply because of the damage it has already caused and the further harm it could do if allowed to continue, but because of the two parties that stand to profit most from this massive undertaking.
The copper mining project in Latbadaung, near Monywa, is a joint-venture between the military-owned Union of Myanmar Economic Holdings Ltd (UMEH) and China's Wanbao Company. More than 7,800 acres of land have been grabbed from 26 villages in the Latbadaung mountain range to make way for the project.
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