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A boat carrying 70 Muslim Rohingya has capsized off Burma, the Associated Press reports, citing an aid worker.
Eight survivors are reported to have been found so far.
Burma's President Thein Sein has promised there will be no prisoners of conscience left in his country's jails by the end of the year.
The Burmese government has faced international criticism for the number of prisoners held for their political and religious beliefs or ethnic identity, the most famous of which was the activist Aung San Suu Kyi.
President Thein Sein also said he had signed a peace deal to end the ethnic conflict in the country and that he believes he is close to a nationwide ceasefire.
A boat carrying about 100 Rohingya Muslims has capsized off western Burma while evacuating people ahead of a coming storm and an unknown number of people are missing, a senior U.N. official said.
The boat struck rocks off Pauktaw township in Rakhine State and sank late on Monday, Barbara Manzi, head of the Myanmar office at the U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), told Reuters.
EU Governments are expected to announce next week that they are to lift sanctions against Burma according to Reuters. It's understood that they will not lift an arms embargo against the country which recently held elections.
At least 13 children have been killed in a blaze at a mosque housing orphans in Burma.
Initially the fire in eastern Yangon was thought to have been linked to sectarian violence that has shaken the nation, but it was later blamed on an electrical fault.
Police officer Thet Lwin said the fire was triggered by an overheated inverter "and not due to any criminal activity".
Sectarian violence between Buddhists and Muslims erupted in the central city of Meikhtila last month, killing dozens of people and displacing more than 10,000.
An excavation team searching for buried World War II Spitfires has released the first set of pictures from its search in Burma. The team is using specialist ground-scanning equipment which they hope will narrow down the search in the next few days.
People have filled the streets of Rangoon to enjoy Burma's first public New Year's countdown celebration.