Narinjara News

 

Dhaka, June 5, 2005

 

Woman forced into marriage after rape


An Arakanese woman was forced to marry a rapist after she was violated by him, according to a press release of Rakhaing Women Union (RWU) on 3 June 2005.

 The incident took place in the village of Sarbyin under Toung Gok Township, in southern Arakan state on 19 May.


In the RWU press release, a women age 25 was raped by a constable named Kyaw Myo That in the village while her family was absent from the home.

 

Soon after her father received the news he went to complain to the village chairman U Thein Tin.  The next day, the village chairman brought the woman and her father to the village police station and made a complaint about the rape to police officers to take necessary action.

 

However, police officers did not take any action against the constable. Furthermore, the police officer ordered the constable to marry the woman immediately.


The marriage was broken after one hour. The women and her father were forced to return back to their village by police officers afterwards, said the press release.

"It is not only a violation by the police constable, but also the police officer. We strongly condemn use of such a cruel manner on a victims abused by police officers", said RWU president Saw Mra Raza lun to Narinjara over the phone.

 

RWU also spoke out in their statement on another rape case and murder, which took place in Akyab, a capital of Arakan state, in 2004. Even though the woman was killed after rape, there has not been any action taken on the culprit by authorities because the he was a son of the president of Arakan state's Myanmar Women's Affair Federation, a government sponsored organization.

 

In the second incident a young housemaid was killed after she was raped by a son of Daw Khin Than Nu, president of Arakan state's Myanmar Women's Affair Federation, as well as a professor of faculty of Burmese at Akyab University.

 

In the incident a number of lawyers from Akyab took part to handle the case for the victim's family but the Akyab district judge did not take any action against the culprit's family because of pressure from the Burmese military government.


In Arakan state there are a number of rape cases perpetrated by the Burmese army and government officials but the victims are not comfortable taking their cases to the authorities because they are afraid of being ostracized by people and nearer families, said a female teacher from Akyab. #

 

 

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