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Jade: 50 tonne jade boulder found in Myanmar

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Half-buried jade boulder deep in rebel territory, guarded by soldiers. Govt & rebels in talks before handing rock over. 

Similar giant jade boulder found in Myanmar in 2006 (Source: Public Domain)

NATURE 

Massive jade rock found in Myanmar

21/02/2014

AP News agency

A trader looks at jade stones at Myanmar's 2011 Mid-Year Emporium for jade, gems and pearls at an emporium hall in Nay Pyi Taw on Dec 24, 2011. (photo by Reuters)

YANGON — An enormous jade boulder that could weigh up to 50 tonnes has been found half buried in restive northern Myanmar, and the government has sent troops to protect it, a state minister said on Friday.

The raw jade was discovered by villages and small-scale miners in the gem-rich region of Hpakant just over a week ago, but since it's still half buried, it's impossible to know its exact size, said Lajun Ngan Seng, the minister of resource-rich Kachin state.

He said authorities believe it may be 5.5 meters wide, weighing up to 50 tonnes.

"It's being guarded by soldiers," the minister said, adding that after it is completely unearthed, "We'll decide what to do with it.''

Myanmar is one of the world's biggest producers of jade, most found in the conflict-torn mountains of Kachin state, where ethnic rebels have been fighting the government for more than half a century.

The vast majority of the gemstones, considered to be of the highest quality, are smuggled over the border to China.

Hpakant has been closed off to large-scale miners since 2011, because of renewed fighting between government troops and rebels with the Kachin Independence Army (KIA). But individual miners and villagers, using rudimentary equipment, sometimes even their bare hands, have not stopped looking.

Dwut Lar, a church official with ties to the rebels, said that the government and the rebel group were in discussions about the giant jade rock. He said the insurgents were offered 10% of its yet-to-be-determined value, but rejected that as far too low.

http://www.bangkokpost.com/breakingnews/396272/massive-jade-boulder-found-in-myanmar

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Vocabulary:

authority: a person or government agency who has the power to make decisions or enforce the law - เจ้าหน้าที่ผู้มีอำนาจ

bare hands: empty or uncovered hands - มือเปล่า

border: the official line separating two areas, regions or countries - เขตแดน อาณาเขต

boulder: a very large rock which has been shaped by water or the weather - หินขนาดใหญ่เปลี่ยนเป็นรูปร่างต่างๆ เพราะน้ำ/อากาศ

buried: covered completely by something, in this case, soil - ฝัง

conflict: an angry disagreement between people or groups - ความขัดแย้ง

consider: to regard as; to think of as - ถือว่า

determined: found out; discovered; decided - ระบุชี้ชัด, ตัดสินใจ

discover: to be the first person to become aware that a particular place or thing exists - ค้นพบ

discussion: conversation; talk - การสนทนา, การอภิปราย

enormous: extremely large - มหาศาล

equipment: the things that are needed for a particular purpose or activity - อุปกรณ์, เครื่องมือ

exact: done, made, or described in a very thorough way, with all the details correct - ถูกต้องแม่นยำ

gem: a jewel (= precious stone), especially when cut into a particular regular shape - อัญมณี, เพชรพลอย

gemstone: a precious stone such as a diamond or rub that has been specially cut and polished so it can be worn as jewelry - เพชรพลอยที่ยังไม่เจียรไน

guard: to watch a place carefully to protect someone from attack, to prevent something from being stolen, or to prevent someone from escaping - เฝ้ายาม, ดูแล, รักษาความปลอดภัย

impossible: something that cannot happen - เป็นไปไม่ได้

insurgent: someone who belongs to a group of people fighting to take control of their country by force - กลุ่มก่อการกบถ

jade: a hard stone that is usually green and is used in making jewellery and decorative objects - หยก,แร่หยก

large-scale: very big -

majority: most of the people in a group - เสียงส่วนใหญ่ คนส่วนใหญ่

minister: a member of the cabinet, the group of government ministers who make and approve government policy - รัฐมนตรี

pearl: a round shiny valuable ball found that grows in pearls and is used in jewelry - ไข่มุก

producer: a person, a company or a country that grows or makes food, goods or materials - ผู้ผลิต

protect: to make sure that somebody/something is not harmed, injured, damaged, etc - ป้องกัน,อารักขา,คุ้มกัน

quality: the standard of something when it is compared to other things like it; how good or bad something is - คุณภาพ

raw: in its natural state; not yet changed, used or made into something else - ดิบ

rebel: a person who opposes somebody in authority over them within an organization, a political party, etc; a person who does not like to obey rules or who does not accept normal standards of behaviour - คนขัดขืน, คนหัวรั้น

region: a large area of land, usually without exact limits or borders - ภูมิภาค, ขอบเขต, แถบ, บริเวณ

reject: to not accept something - ปฏิเสธ ไม่ยอมรับ

renew: to start something again - เริ่มใหม่

resources: things such as water, coal, trees and oil that exist in nature and can be used by people - ทรัพยากร

restive: dissatisfied and difficult to control - ซึ่งควบคุมยาก

rich: interesting, with a lot of different qualities, experiences or events - อุดมไปด้วย

rudimentary: not highly or fully developed - ยังไม่เจริญเต็มที่

similar: like somebody/something but not exactly the same - คล้ายกัน

small-scale: small in size or impact - ขนาดเล็ก

smuggle: to take things or people to or from a place secretly and often illegally - ลักลอบนำเข้า

state: government - รัฐบาล

trader: someone who buys and sells things - ผู้ค้า

troops: soldiers, especially in large numbers - กองทหาร

unearth: to find something that is buried in the ground; to discover something or someone that was not known before or that people had kept secret, especially by searching very thoroughly - ขุดขึ้นมา, พบ, เปิดเผย

value: how much something is worth in money or other goods for which it can be exchanged - มูลค่า

vast: extremely large in area, size, amount, etc. - กว้างใหญ่, มหาศาล

yet-to-be-determined: do not know or have not decided, will in the future -

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