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Economic oppression, Extortion, Robbery
See also Food Security

Individual Documents

Title: Myanmar's minorities face multi-faced jeopardy
Date of publication: 23 January 2014
Description/subject: "Speaking Freely is an Asia Times Online feature that allows guest writers to have their say. Please click here if you are interested in contributing. The international community, whose Western representatives so readily flock to Myanmar in both good will and selfish interest, is often an unwitting contributor to the country's persistent instability. This will likely lead not to intended peace but to more unwanted war until certain facts are fully faced..."
Author/creator: Tim Heinemann
Language: English
Source/publisher: "Asia Times Online"
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 27 May 2014


Title: Minerals, militants and Myanmar peace
Date of publication: 23 October 2013
Description/subject: "A recent spate of bombings in Myanmar was attributed by police to local mining businessmen intent on stopping foreign investment. These rogue commercial elements were seemingly worried of the impact on their business interests. The shadowy assaults, including a bomb that detonated in a room occupied by an American in the Traders Hotel, demonstrates just how complex the climate for investors is in Myanmar. It also reveals how opaque mining interests could derail the peace process underway between the government and armed rebels and jeopardize the country's democratic transition. Hype persists over Myanmar's resource wealth, with the country gearing up for new waves of investment and new mining laws predicted to shortly come into effect. A recent Asian Development Bank study noted that Myanmar could become Asia's next "rising star" if it can leverage its rich resource potential. However, regardless of much optimism, difficulties remain and if not addressed could unsettle the peace process. The most important issue for investors, but also populations living near resources, is the reform of legal and regulatory frameworks. The current uncertainty in these frameworks has undermined the investment climate. Similarly, land tenure must be defined and a sustainable agreement reached with armed ethnic groups for their greater inclusion into the democratic process. Greater transparency is also needed to boost confidence in local actors that remain entangled with military powerbrokers. If such a prudent approach is not achieved, resources could become more of a burden than a boon in the country's transformation..."
Author/creator: Elliot Brennan
Language: English
Source/publisher: "Asia Times Online"
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 28 May 2014


Title: Violent abuse and forced labour in Bu Tho Township, November and December 2012
Date of publication: 23 July 2013
Description/subject: "This news bulletin is based on information submitted by a community member in January 2013 describing events occurring in Papun District between November and December 2012, including physical abuse and forced labour. The community member reported that, in November 2012, Corporal Saw Maw Nay Say of Tatmadaw Border Guard Force (BGF) Battalion #1014 beat Saw P---, a livestock trader, and confiscated money from him. The report also notes that, a month later, Tatmadaw BGF Battalion #1013 Commander Htee Theh Htoo ordered the investigating KHRG community member to perform forced labour, without knowing that he was affiliated with KHRG. The community member reported that he had to porter rations between BGF #1013 bases in K'Ter Tee village to Meh Mweh village. The community member also raised concerns that abuses were still occurring in the area as of late 2012 despite the January 2012 ceasefire agreement."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (255K), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2013/khrg13b47.html
Date of entry/update: 10 August 2013


Title: Papun Situation Update: Dwe Lo Township, March 2012 to March 2013
Date of publication: 16 July 2013
Description/subject: "This report includes a situation update submitted to KHRG in May 2013 by a community member describing events occurring in Papun District mostly between March 2012 and March 2013, and also provides details on abuses since 2006. The report specifically describes incidents of forced labour, theft, logging, land confiscation and gold mining. The situation update describes military activity from August 2012 to January 2013, specifically Tatmadaw soldiers from Infantry Battalion (IB) #96 ordering villagers to make thatch shingles and cut bamboo. Moreover, soldiers stole villagers' thatch shingles, bamboo canes and livestock. It also describes logging undertaken by wealthy villagers with the permission of the Karen National Union (KNU) and contains updated information concerning land confiscation by Tatmadaw Border Guard Force (BGF) Battalions #1013 and #1014. The update also reports on gold mining initiatives led by the Democratic Karen Benevolent Army (DKBA) that started in 2010. At that time, civilians were ordered to work for the DKBA, and their lands, rivers and plantations were damaged as a result of mining operations. The report also notes economic changes that accompanied mining. In previous years villagers could pan gold from the river and sell it as a hedge against food insecurity. Now, however, options are limited because they must acquire written permission to pan in the river. This situation update also documents villager responses to abuses, and notes that an estimated 10 percent of area villagers favour corporate gold mining, while 90 percent oppose the efforts..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (292K), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2013/khrg13b45.html
Date of entry/update: 10 August 2013


Title: Persistent forced labour demands stop in six villages in Bilin Township as of September 2012
Date of publication: 04 July 2013
Description/subject: "This report is based on information submitted to KHRG in July 2012 and April 2013 by a community member trained by KHRG to monitor human rights conditions, describing events occurring in Bilin Township, Thaton District between April 2012 and April 2013. In April 2012, approximately 721 villagers from six villages had to provide 5,000 bamboo poles and more than 20,000 thatch shingles without compensation for Tatmadaw Light Infantry Division (LID) #44's Lay Kay army camp. LID #44 soldiers also ordered villagers to serve as messengers for their camp without payment. D--- villagers again were ordered to provide thatch for repairing barracks at Lay Kay army camp in September 2012, but according to the community member who regularly visits the Lay Kay area, the Tatmadaw has not made any further orders for forced labour in the area since then."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (197K), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2013/khrg13b41.html
Date of entry/update: 10 August 2013


Title: Nyaunglebin Situation Update: Kyauk Kyi Township, July to September 2012
Date of publication: 20 June 2013
Description/subject: "This report includes a situation update submitted to KHRG in September 2012 by a community member describing events occurring in Nyaunglebin District between July and September 2012, including the imposition of taxes by Tatmadaw soldiers on villagers mining gold, use of a landmine by KNLA soldiers and the distribution of humanitarian aid by multiple international and local organizations. Specifically, the report describes Tatmadaw IB #57 imposing taxation over 40 villagers mining gold for their livelihoods. The report also describes the attempt of the Myanmar Peace Support Initiative to send food supplies by truck to Hsaw Mee Luh base camp in August 2012, as well as the placing and marking of an anti-vehicle mine by KNLA Battalion #9 soldiers between Kat Pe base camp and Mu Theh village. Flooding in Kyauk Kyi area that started in July is also reported, which caused villagers problems with travel and work and destroyed rice paddies. World Food Programme staff visited flood victims and provided some relief during this time as well and, in August, Back Pack Health Worker Team members distributed rice on behalf of Emergency Assistance Team-Burma and also delivered soap and medicine to flood victims in Ma Au Pin village tract. During the period of flooding, villagers were worried that if gold mining operations continued along the Tha Ye stream that polluted water would contaminate their paddies and cause destruction. Villagers thus requested that gold mining stop during the floods. This request was not heeded, and all paddies in 30 acres of flat field farms died during flooding. The report also details that road builders and village officials demanded 200 kyat (US $.21) from each traveler along the road through M--- village, including students from the M--- primary school. Additionally, it details financial offers made to villagers by the Burma government, as well as issues villagers have had with accessing deposits."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (287K)
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2013/khrg13b36.html
Date of entry/update: 10 August 2013


Title: Dooplaya Situation Update: Kya In Seik Kyi Township, September 2012
Date of publication: 07 June 2013
Description/subject: This report includes a situation update submitted to KHRG in September 2012 by a community member describing events occurring in Dooplaya District, during September 2012. Specifically detailed is the situation and location of armed groups (Tatmadaw, DKBA and BGF); the villagers’ situation and opinions of the KNLA; and development projects in the area. This report also contains information about Tatmadaw practices such as the killing of villager’s livestock without permission or compensation; forcing villagers to be guides; and use of villagers’ tractors; villagers were however, given payment for this. The report also describes villagers’ difficulties associated with the payment of government-required motorbike licenses, as well as difficulties regarding the education system. The lack of healthcare in local villages is described, as well as the ailments that villagers suffer from. Further, this report includes information about antimony mining projects in the area carried out by companies such as San Mya Yadana Company and Thu Wana Myay Zi Lwar That Tuh Too Paw Yay owned by Hkin Zaw. Antimony mining is reported to have been going on for four years and the presence of mining companies is reported to have led to food price increases in the area. The community member describes how large mining companies have contributed water pipes and money to a village school. The biggest mining project in the region led by Hkin Maung is discussed and it is reported that mining companies working in the area have permission from the KNU and pay taxes to the KNU. This report and others, was published in March 2013 in Appendix 1: Raw Data Testimony of KHRG’s thematic report: Losing Ground: Land Conflicts and collective action in eastern Myanmar.
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (135K), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2013/khrg13b32.html
Date of entry/update: 27 July 2013


Title: Nyaunglebin Situation Update: Kyauk Kyi and Shwegyin townships, September to November 2012
Date of publication: 06 June 2013
Description/subject: "This report includes a situation update submitted to KHRG in November 2012 by a community member describing events occurring in Nyaunglebin District, during the period between September to November 2012, including information about Tatmadaw activities, the villagers� situation and the community member�s opinion on the Norwegian�s pilot project that is underway in the area. It specifically describes Tatmadaw demands for money to operate gold mines, demands for transportation labour from villagers who own tractors, civilian movement restrictions from new travel document requirements, continued resupply efforts, and road repairs during which one vehicle was damaged by a landmine. There are details on a ceremony celebrating the peace that the Burma government and the KNU are building, as centred around the official transfer of a KNU liaison office out of a Burma government building to a separate KNU-dedicated building. According to the community member, police corruption affects the ability of villagers to engage in business activities, such as when a U--- villager, named Ma L---, was required to pay a tax to sell lottery vouchers, and another 600,000 kyat to release her nephew from jail when he was arrested while assisting her with transporting the vouchers. This report also includes information about the Sittaung Bridge opening ceremony, construction for which damaged villagers� land, but they were not given compensation. In response to demands for tractor owners to transport material for the Tatmadaw, villagers did not send rations for them but instead complained to the soldiers about the problems for the villagers. The community member did describe that the overall situation for the civilians has improved since the ceasefire, but that damage from natural events still cause food security problems..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (382K), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2013/khrg13b31.html
Date of entry/update: 27 July 2013


Title: Hpa-an Situation Update: T'Nay Hsah Township, June 2012 to February 2013
Date of publication: 05 June 2013
Description/subject: "This report includes a situation update submitted to KHRG in February 2013 by a community member describing events occurring in T'Nay Hsah Township, Hpa-an District between June 2012 and February 2013. The report describes monks demanding money and labour from villagers for the building of roads and pagodas. Also detailed in this report is the loss of money and possessions by many villagers through playing the two-digit lottery. Further, the report describes the cutting down of forest in Yaw Ku and in Kru Per village tracts by the DKBA and the BGF, including 30 t'la aw trees, which villagers rely upon for their housing; the Tatmadaw have also designated land for sale without consulting local villagers. This report also describes the prevalence of amphetamine use and sale in the area, involving both young people and armed groups including the BGF, KPF and DKBA. Finally, the report details the ongoing danger posed by landmines, which continue to stop villagers from going about their livelihoods and are reportedly still being planted by armed groups..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (242K)
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2013/khrg13b30.html
Date of entry/update: 27 July 2013


Title: Incident Report: Forced recruitment in Thaton District #1, May 2012
Date of publication: 29 May 2013
Description/subject: The following incident report was written by a community member who has been trained by KHRG to monitor human rights abuses. The community member who wrote this report described that on May 29th 2012, villagers were ordered to be recruited for a one-year service by Moe Nyo, a fomer DKBA leader now serving as a company commander in the BGF Battalion #1014, in order to form a new people's militia group. The cost to avoid service was 50,000 kyat per month, which the villagers reported having difficulties with raising. Some villagers who refused to serve, but lacked the money to opt-out and responded to the order by fleeing their village. This report has been summarized along with three other Incident Reports received from this area in: "BGF Battalion #1014 forced labour and forced recruitment, April to May 2012," KHRG, May 2013.
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (91K), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2013/khrg13b26.html
Date of entry/update: 22 June 2013


Title: Papun Situation Update: Bu Tho Township, August to September 2012
Date of publication: 12 April 2013
Description/subject: "This report includes a situation update submitted to KHRG in November 2012 by a community member describing events occurring in Bu Tho Township, Papun District, in the period between August and September 2012. The community member reports the use of villagers for forced labour by Border Guard Force (BGF) Battalion #1013; from August 5th to September 28th 2012 the Battalion regularly ordered villagers to act as messengers and carry out work in Th'Ree Hta army camp; villagers were also forced to carry ammunitions and food for the soldiers without payment and to cut down bamboo canes. The community member goes on to describe BGF Battalion #1014 Commander Saw Maung Chit's failed attempt to recruit soldiers voluntarily in Meh Pree village tract and Htee Th'Daw Hta village tract, leading him to demand a total of 33 million kyat (US $37,437) from the two village tracts. Further, the report describes the arbitrary arrest, two-day detention and torture of S--- villager, Saw H---, by BGF Battalion #1014 Officer Saw Way Luh. This torture of Saw H--- left him with serious injuries; Officer Saw Way Luh is reported to have explained his torture of Saw H--- by claiming that the villager was a Karen National Liberation Army (KNLA) spy. Villagers' difficulties regarding health care, food shortages and education are also described in this report..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (268K), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2013/khrg13b19.html
Date of entry/update: 01 May 2013


Title: Nyaunglebin Situation Update: Ler Doh Township, November 2012 to January 2013
Date of publication: 09 April 2013
Description/subject: This report includes a situation update submitted to KHRG in January 2013 by a community member describing events occurring in Nyaunglebin District during the period between November 2012 and January 2013. Specifically, it describes the confiscation of more than 2375.14 acres of villagers' land by Tatmadaw Infantry Battalion #60. One villager was required by Light Infantry Battalion #264 soldiers to collect 250,000 kyat per month from the villagers who operate gold ore processing machines. The community member also describes how, despite the January 2012 ceasefire being in effect, the Tatmadaw continues to increase resupply missions in the area, which has created alarm amongst local civilians. As part of a CIDKP pilot project, 173 sacks of rice have been distributed to Muh Theh villagers. The community member reports that there was an increase in medical care in the area, where Tatmadaw medics travelled with armed soldiers to three towns in KNU-controlled areas in Kyauk Kyi Township, while FBR medics travelled with unarmed KNLA soldiers to Tatmadaw-controlled areas. In response to the land confiscation, villagers' reported their complaints by submitting a letter to the Burma government, however, no response had been received as of January.
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (462K)
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2013/khrg13b17.html
Date of entry/update: 30 April 2013


Title: Politics of corruption in Myanmar
Date of publication: 05 April 2013
Description/subject: "Signs of corruption are mounting in Myanmar, a crisis of confidence that threatens to derail President Thein Sein's ambitious reform program. Whether Thein Sein is willing to push through top-level prosecutions, including at the tainted telecommunications ministry, could make or break the country's transition from military to democratic rule. Underscoring decades of unaccountable military rule, Myanmar has consistently ranked near the top of Transparency International's global corruption rankings. Now, with financial reforms and economic liberalization measures promising to lure big new foreign investments and boost asset prices across the economy, officials are increasingly leveraging their positions for personal gain, according to government insiders situated at the president's office..."
Author/creator: Larry Jagan
Language: English
Source/publisher: "Asia Times Online"
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 30 May 2014


Title: Border Guard #1014 demands for labour and goods in Papun District, May 2012
Date of publication: 25 March 2013
Description/subject: "This report is based on information submitted to KHRG in May 2012 by a community member[1] describing events occurring in Papun District, in May 2012, involving soldiers from Border Guard Battalion #1014, which is based out of K'Ter Tee and Hpaw Htee Hku villages. Commander Nyunt Thein and his Battalion Commander Maung Chit from the Battalion #1014 were identified, by name, as the ones who committed the abuses. Villagers were forced to build a camp for the Battalion #1014, which was also reported to have looted items from the villagers and forced them to do the camp's work, all of which is uncompensated..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (254K), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2013/khrg13b9.html
Date of entry/update: 01 May 2013


Title: Incident Report: Looting in Papun District #1, May 2012
Date of publication: 25 March 2013
Description/subject: "The following incident report was submitted to KHRG in May 2012 by a community describing an incident that occurred on May 17th 2012, where Border Guard Force (BGF) Battalion #1014 soldiers looted livestock and durian from H---, X--- and Y--- villages in Meh Pree village tract, Bu Tho Township, Papun District. The report also includes villagers' opinions on the changing human rights situation, and expresses concern that looting and forced labour demands by armed groups is likely to persist."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (267K), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2013/khrg13b10.html
Date of entry/update: 01 May 2013


Title: Situation Update | Moo, Ler Doh and Hsaw Htee townships, Nyaunglebin District (January to June 2012)
Date of publication: 17 October 2012
Description/subject: This report includes a situation update submitted to KHRG in July 2012 by a community member describing events occurring in Nyaunglebin District between January and June 2012. Specifically discussed are Tatmadaw demands, including new gold mining taxes imposed by Light Infantry Battalion #264 and their demands for sentries, and the construction of a bridge inside Na Tha Kway village, which has displaced many villagers without providing compensation. This report also includes information about 400 villagers who gathered together on March 12th to protest the construction of Kyauk N'Ga Dam on the Shwegyin River in Hsaw Htee and Ler Doh townships; the opening of a Karen Nation Union (KNU) liaison office in Ler Doh town on April 9th, during which over 10,000 villagers awaited government officials; the arrival of representatives from the Norwegian government to the internally displaced persons (IDP) area in Mu The; and a visit by a United States Senator on May 29th in Ler Doh town and subsequently in Nay Pyi Daw. The report also describes work and food security problems in Nyaunglebin, where some villagers have migrated to neighbouring Thailand and Malaysia for employment, or to work in Yangon's growing entertainment industry. The community member spoke with villagers in the area who expressed overall satisfaction with the peace and ceasefire process, and they hope that it will continue to be stable.
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (438k), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b80.html
Date of entry/update: 08 November 2012


Title: Civilian and Military order documents: August 2009 to August 2012
Date of publication: 03 October 2012
Description/subject: "This report contains a total of 58 translated copies of order documents issued by military and civilian officials of Burma's central government, as well as 'Border Guard' battalions, to village heads in eastern Burma between August 2009 and August 2012, including 44 order documents issued since February 2011. To provide additional context for forced labour incidents documented by KHRG community members during 2012, original excerpts from 23 pieces of KHRG field information are also included. These documents cumulatively serve as primary evidence of ongoing exploitative local governance in rural Burma. During 2012, systemic forms of forced labour consisted of military camp maintenance or building; portering; labour for community or development projects; and agricultural labour. This report thus supports the continuing testimonies of villagers regarding regular demands for labour, money, food and other supplies to which their communities are subject to by local civilian and military authorities. The order documents collected here include demands for attendance at meetings; the provision of money and food; the production and delivery of thatch, bamboo and other materials; forced labour as messengers and porters for the military; forced labour on road construction and repair; the provision of information on individuals, households and non-state armed groups; and the imposition of movement restrictions. In almost all cases, demands were uncompensated and backed by implicit or explicit threats of violence or other punishments for non-compliance. Most demands articulated in the orders presented in this report involved some element of forced labour in their implementation."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (7.56MB), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg1202.html
Date of entry/update: 08 November 2012


Title: Villager shot and killed in Papun District
Date of publication: 02 October 2012
Description/subject: On June 13th 2012, Saw N---, a 48-year-old former resident of M--- village, Naw Yoh Hta village tract, Lu Thaw Township, Papun District was shot and killed while collecting truffles in Pa Heh village tract, Bu Tho Township, Papun District. The shooting took place close to where the Tatmadaw soldiers from Infantry Battalion #19 are based at Hpah Hkeh Kyo, leading local villagers and a security leader to believe that it was troops from the camp in question who were the perpetrators of the shooting. Also during the incident, 30,000 baht (US $973.72), which Saw N—had brought along to purchase truffles from others on the trip went missing. This incident is also described by villagers in two other published KHRG reports.
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (252K), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b78.html
Date of entry/update: 08 November 2012


Title: Dooplaya Situation Update: Kawkareik Township and Kya In Township, April to June 2012
Date of publication: 14 September 2012
Description/subject: "This report includes a situation update submitted to KHRG in June 2012 by a community member who described events occurring in Dooplaya District during the period between April 2012 and June 2012, specifically in relation to landmines, education, health, taxation and demand, forced labour, land confiscation, displacement, and restrictions on freedom of movement and trade. After the 2012 ceasefire between the Burma government and the KNU, remaining landmines still present serious risks for local villagers in Kawkareik Township because they are unable to travel. Details are provided about 57-year-old B--- village head, Saw L---, 70-year-old Saw E--- and Saw T---, who each stepped on landmines. During May 2012, Tatmadaw soldiers ordered three villagers' to supply hand tractors to transport materials for them from Aung May K' La village to Ke---, plus Tatmadaw soldiers ordered five hand tractors to transports materials from Kyaik Doh village to Kya In Seik Gyi Town. Also described in the report are villagers' opinions on the ongoing ceasefire and whether or not they feel it is benefiting them, as well as village responses to land confiscation by Tatmadaw forces. After a village head was informed that any empty properties found would be confiscated, villagers in the area stayed temporarily in other peoples' houses on request of the owner..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (215K), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b76.html
Date of entry/update: 08 November 2012


Title: Toungoo Interview: Saw H---, April 2011
Date of publication: 05 September 2012
Description/subject: This report contains the full transcript of an interview conducted during April 2011 in Tantabin Township, Toungoo District by a community member trained by KHRG to monitor human rights conditions. The community member interviewed a 37 year-old township secretary, Saw H---, who described abuses committed by several Tatmadaw battalions, including forced relocation, land confiscation, forced labour, restrictions on freedom of movement, denial of humanitarian access, targeting civilians, and arbitrary taxes and demands. Saw H--- provided a detailed description of three development projects that the Tatmadaw has planned in the area. Most notable is Toh Boh[1] hydroelectric dam on the Day Loh River, which is expected to destroy 3,143 acres of surrounding farmland. Asia World Company began building the dam in Toh Boh, Day Loh village tract during 2005. The other two projects involved the confiscation of 2,400 acres, against which the villagers formed a committee to petition for compensation and were met with threats of imprisonment. Saw H--- also described how 30 people working on the dam die each year. Also mentioned is the Tatmadaw's burning of villagers' cardamom plantations, and the villagers' attempts to limit the fire damage using fire lines. It is also described by Saw H--- how some villagers have chosen to remain in KNLA/KNU-controlled areas and produce commodities for sale, despite the attendant increase in the price of goods purchased from Tatmadaw-controlled villages, while others have fled to refugee camps in other countries. For photos of the Toh Boh Dam taken by a different community member in March 2012, see "Photo Set: More than 100 households displaced from Toh Boh Dam construction site in Toungoo," published by KHRG on August 23rd
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (225K), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b72.html
Date of entry/update: 05 November 2012


Title: Papun Interview: Saw N---, January 2012
Date of publication: 27 July 2012
Description/subject: "This report contains the full transcript of an interview conducted during January 2012 in Bu Tho Township, Papun District by a community member trained by KHRG to monitor human rights conditions. The community member interviewed Saw N---, a 39 year-old married father of four, who is both a hill field farmer and village head from K--- village in Day Wah village tract, who described the forced recruitment of soldiers into the Border Guard, and how he had arranged for the release of a local villager who had been prohibited from leaving the DKBA by making a cash payment totalling 1,000,000 kyat (US $1,135). Also described in the report, are instances of theft of villagers' livestock, forced labour and forced portering instigated by the Border Guard. Saw N--- mentions the continuous physical assault and other abuse of local villagers, specifically by a Border Guard soldier called Thaw Kweh. Saw N--- also provides information on village life in regards to healthcare, food security, and education. Saw N--- mentions that villagers have avoided paying for a government teacher and choose to pay a local teacher, whom they pay 5,000 kyat (US $5.65) per student for a year. Concerns are also raised in regards to construction projects in the local area."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (308K), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b70.html
Date of entry/update: 12 August 2012


Title: Mergui/Tavoy Interview: Saw K---, April 2012
Date of publication: 18 July 2012
Description/subject: "This report contains the full transcript of an interview conducted during April 2012 in Ler Mu Lah Township, Mergui/Tavoy District by a community member trained by KHRG to monitor human rights conditions. The community member interviewed 40-year-old G--- village head, Saw K---, who described abusive practices perpetrated by the Tatmadaw in his village throughout the previous four year period, including forced labour, arbitrary taxation in the form of both goods and money, and obstructions to humanitarian relief, specifically medical care availability and education support. Saw K--- also discussed development projects and land confiscation that has occurred in the area, including one oil palm company that came to deforest 700 acres of land next to G--- village in order to plant oil palm trees, as well as the arrival of a Malaysian logging company, neither of which provided any compensation to villagers for the land that was confiscated. However, the Malaysian logging company did provide enough wood, iron nails and roofing material for one school in the village, and promised the villagers that it would provide additional support later. Saw K--- raised other concerns regarding the food security, health care and difficulties with providing education for children in the village. In order to address these issues, Saw K--- explained that villagers have met with the Ler Mu Lah Township leaders to solve land confiscation problems, but some G--- villagers have had to give up their land, including a full nursery of betel nut plantations, based on the company’s claim that the plantations were illegally maintained."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (136K), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b64.html
Date of entry/update: 12 August 2012


Title: Pa'an Situation Update: Dta Greh and Lu Pleh Townships, September 2011
Date of publication: 05 July 2012
Description/subject: "This report includes a situation update submitted to KHRG in November 2011 by a community member describing events that occurred in Pa'an District in September 2011. It contains updated information concerning military activity, specifically Border Guard and Tatmadaw troops' demands for villagers to provide forced labour. Villagers from Eg--- were ordered by Border Guard troops to repair the vehicle road between Eg--- and M---, and were forced to clear vegetation from Border Guard Advisor Hpah Nwee's rubber plantation – an incident that was previously reported by KHRG in June 2012 in "Pa'an Interview: Saw T---, September 2011". Villagers who were sick or could not spare the time to meet the forced labour demands had to hire other villagers to work in their place, highlighting how such demands can prevent villagers from engaging fully in their livelihood activities."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (254K), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b55.html
Date of entry/update: 13 July 2012


Title: Shan Human Rights Foundation Monthly Report, July 2012 - Extortion [in Shan State]
Date of publication: July 2012
Description/subject: Commentary: Extortion Everywhere... Contents: Themes & Places of Violations reported in this issue... Acronyms... MAP... Situation of extortion in various government civil and social services department in Shan State... Extortion on issuance of citizen identity cards in Keng-Tung... Extortion on issuance of citizen identity card in Ta-Khi-Laek... Extortion concerning electricity department in Kaeng-Tung... Extortion by electricity department in Kaeng –Tawng sub-township, Murng-Nai township... Extortion by land survey department in Kaeng Tawng sub-township, Murng-Nai township... Extortion by authorities in charge of anti-human-trafficking, at airports and checkpoints in Kaw-Law and Ta-Khi-Laek... Extortion by members of telephone department in Kaeng-Tung... Extortion by road and vehicle control department in Kaeng-Tung... Situation of extortion by police and military at checkpoints in Shan State... Extortion at checkpoints near Thai-Border in Murng-Ton.
Language: English
Source/publisher: Shan Human Rights Foundation (SHRF)
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 08 January 2013


Title: Forced labour and extortion in Pa'an District
Date of publication: 22 June 2012
Description/subject: "During March, April and May 2012, residents of five village tracts in Pa'an District were ordered to perform forced labour without payment and pay arbitrary fees in lieu of forced labour and for damage to crops by animals. Villagers from Htee Hpoh Kyaw, Mya P'Deh and Noh Ta Pweh village tracts in T'Nay Hsah Township were ordered to cultivate land for Tatmadaw and Border Guard troops, while T'Kaw Bee village tract residents were ordered to transport building materials from Kawkareik town and perform forced labour building a water well for the DKBA. Most recently, in May 2012, residents of Htee Wah Blaw village tract were ordered to pay a total of 600,000 kyat (US $733.50) in lieu of sending six villagers to serve as porters for Border Guard troops."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (952K), html
Date of entry/update: 13 July 2012


Title: Pa'an Interview: Saw P---, September 2011
Date of publication: 06 June 2012
Description/subject: "This report contains the full transcript of an interview conducted during September 2011 in Dta Greh Township, Pa'an District by a community member trained by KHRG to monitor human rights conditions. The community member interviewed 31-year-old Saw P---, a hill field farmer from T--- village, who described the problems faced by T--- villagers as a result of Border Guard troops' activities in Dta Greh Township, specifically concerning their demands for food and the theft of villagers' livestock. He provided details of an incident that occurred in August 2011, in which a villager's pig, worth approximately US $110, was shot and eaten without permission and furthermore no compensation was provided. Saw P--- also explained that the presence of KNLA troops in the area has led to a decrease in such incidents of theft, by serving to deter Border Guard soldiers from approaching T--- village when they are aware that KNLA troops are operating nearby."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (155K), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b56.html
Date of entry/update: 13 July 2012


Title: Forced labour in Bilin Township
Date of publication: 31 May 2012
Description/subject: "During April 2012, residents of four village tracts in Bilin Township faced demands from Tatmadaw LID #44 for building materials, including 5,000 bamboo poles and more than 20,000 thatch shingles, as well as for service as set tha messengers. Villagers responded to demands for building materials by providing less than the amount ordered and, in at least one case, by confronting armed soldiers and requesting payment, which was denied. The use of villagers to perform unpaid set tha messenger service at the Tatmadaw LID #44 camp in Lay Kay was ongoing as of April 30th 2012."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (293K), html (6.6K)
Date of entry/update: 25 June 2012


Title: Papun Situation Update: Dweh Loh Township, January to March 2012
Date of publication: 24 May 2012
Description/subject: "This report includes a situation update submitted to KHRG in April 2012 by a community member describing events occurring in Papun District, in the period between January and March 2012. It provides information on land confiscation by Border Guard Battalion #1013, which has appropriated villagers’ communal grazing land between D--- and M--- villages for the construction of barracks for housing soldiers' families. Related to this project is the planned construction of a dam on the Noh Paw Htee River south of D--- village, which is expected to result in the subsequent flooding of 150 acres of D--- villagers’ farmland, valued at US $91,687. Villagers from K’Ter Tee, Htee Th’Bluh Hta, and Th’Buh Hta village tracts have also reported facing demands for materials used for making thatch shingles, for which villagers receive either minimal or no payment. Updated information concerning other military activity is also provided, specifically on troop augmentation, with LID #22, and IB #8 and #96 reported to have joined Border Guard Battalion #1013 by establishing bases at K’Ter Tee, as well as reports of increased transportation of rations, weapons and troops to camps in the border regions. Details are also provided on new restrictions introduced since the January 2012 ceasefire agreement on the movement of Tatmadaw units; similar restrictions have been documented in Toungoo District in a report published by KHRG in May 2012, "Toungoo Situation Update: Tantabin Township, January to March 2012." Information is also given on a recent Tatmadaw directive, which stipulates that soldiers and villagers living near to military camps must inform any KNU officials they encounter that they are welcome to meet with Tatmadaw commanders or officers."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (295K), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b45.html
Date of entry/update: 13 June 2012


Title: Nyaunglebin Interview: Naw P---, October 2011
Date of publication: 18 May 2012
Description/subject: "This report contains the full transcript of an interview conducted during October 2011 in Nyaunglebin District by a community member trained by KHRG to monitor human rights conditions. The community member interviewed Naw P---, a 42-year-old flat field farmer, who described her experiences being forcibly relocated by Tatmadaw troops, most recently in 2004 from D--- to T--- relocation village. Villagers continue to face movement restrictions, specifically a curfew which prevents villagers from leaving T--- after 6:00 pm, as well as demands from people's militia and Tatmadaw troops for food on a bi-monthly basis following troop rotations, and monthly demands for a big tin (16 kg. / 35.2 lb.) of rice. Payments are also reported in lieu of sentry duties for the Tatmadaw. An incident involving the disappearance and suspected killing of a previous village head in the past was also mentioned. Relocation is reported to have severely undermined villagers’ food security; food scarcity in the relocation village has been exacerbated by the area being more highly populated, with less agricultural land available for villagers to cultivate or on which to graze cattle, and as a consequence they are forced to purchase the bulk of their food in order to survive."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (249K), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b42.html
Date of entry/update: 13 June 2012


Title: Dooplaya Interview: Saw L---, June 2011
Date of publication: 01 May 2012
Description/subject: "This report contains the full transcript of an interview conducted during June 2011 in T--- village, Kya In Township, Dooplaya District by a villager trained by KHRG to monitor human rights conditions. The villager interviewed 17-year-old T--- villager, Saw N---, who described an incident in which the Tatmadaw Light Infantry Battalion (LIB) #--- fired mortar rounds towards T--- village, in response to an attack by Democratic Karen Buddhist Army (DKBA) #107 on their camp near H--- village. Saw N--- and two other T--- villagers were injured by two shells, with one villager, Kyaw M---, later dying as a result of his injuries. Saw N--- highlighted other issues that arose as a consequence of the attack, particularly concerning the cost of healthcare as his relatives had to borrow money to ensure that he received hospital treatment for his injuries. Demands for food from the Tatmadaw were also cited, as well as arbitrary taxation demands levied by armed groups, and taxes on houses and land. Villagers also have to pay the schoolteachers' salaries which comprise 40 baskets of rice paddy shared between the villagers and 4,000 baht (US $133.33) per household each year..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (331K), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b39.html
Date of entry/update: 10 May 2012


Title: Toungoo Interview Transcript: Saw B---, December 2011
Date of publication: 19 April 2012
Description/subject: "This report contains the full transcript of an interview conducted during December 2011 in W--- village, Daw Hpa Hkoh Township, Toungoo District by a villager trained by KHRG to monitor human rights conditions. The villager interviewed 50-year-old Saw B---, a church leader in W--- village, who described demands for forced labour by Tatmadaw Light Infantry Battalion (LIB) #378 in November 2011, including cutting and portering bamboo poles for the rebuilding of LIB #378 military camp near W--- village, and portering food and performing messenger duty. Saw B--- raised concerns regarding food and livelihood security due to the destruction of W--- villagers' cardamom and coffee plantations by rats. He also explained how the Tatmadaw accused villagers of providing assistance to the Karen National Liberation Arm (KNLA) and placed explicit restrictions on the movement of villagers going to work in their cardamom and coffee plantations, which negatively impacts harvests and food security, in addition to restrictions on the transportation of batteries and medicine. Saw B--- also described the death of one villager due to the lack of medical facilities in the village. Other concerns raised include the absence of accessible education beyond grade seven, an insufficient number of teachers, and the omission of the Karen language from the W--- village school curriculum. Saw B--- noted that since the 2010 General Elections in Burma, the Tatmadaw began to increasingly frame demands for forced labour in terms of loh ah pay; a term traditionally referring to voluntary service for community projects. Saw B--- explained that villagers have responded to such concerns by deciding amongst themselves to only send those villagers who are available to go for forced labour, as well as by sharing food and lending money during times of hardship, and teaching the Karen language in church on Sundays."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (133K), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b38.html
Date of entry/update: 21 April 2012


Title: Toungoo Situation Update: Received in November 2011
Date of publication: 19 April 2012
Description/subject: "This report includes a situation update submitted to KHRG in November 2011 by a villager describing events occurring in Toungoo District prior to October 2011. It frames present village conditions within the context and consequences of the 2005 – 2008 Northern Offensive by Tatmadaw forces and details the following human rights abuses: forced relocation of villages; movement restrictions; forced labour by adult and child villagers; arbitrary taxation and demands; beating and torture of villagers, especially of village leaders; and attacks on and killing of villagers. This situation update also documents a number of villagers' concerns related to village leadership systems, livelihood challenges, the provision of education for children and food shortages. Moreover, this report describes ways by which villagers have sought to mitigate aspects of the abuses and concerns noted above, namely villagers bribing soldiers in order to allow them to transport more supplies than permitted to their village and establishing a rotating village governance system."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (124K)
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b37.html
Date of entry/update: 21 April 2012


Title: Toungoo Situation Update: August to October 2011
Date of publication: 17 April 2012
Description/subject: "This report includes a situation update submitted to KHRG in November 2011 by a villager describing events occurring in Toungoo District between August and October 2011. It contains information concerning military activity in the district, specifically demands for forced labour by Tatmadaw Light Infantry Battalion (LIB) #375. Villagers from D--- and A--- were reportedly forced to clear vegetation surrounding their camp and some A--- villagers were also used to sweep for landmines. Villagers in the A--- area faced demands for bamboo poles and some villagers from P--- were ordered to undertake messenger and portering duties for the Tatmadaw. The situation update provides information on two incidents that occurred on September 21st 2011, in which several villagers from Y--- were shot, and four other Y--- villagers were arrested by Tatmadaw Infantry Battalion (IB) #73 and detained until the Y--- village head paid 300,000 kyat (US $366.75) to secure their release. It also provides details of the arrest of five villagers from D--- village by LIB #375 in August 2011, who remained in detention as of November 2011. It documents the killing of two villagers from E--- village by Military Operations Command (MOC) #9, and the shooting of 54-year-old A--- villager, Saw O---, by LIB #375 for violating movement restrictions. Information was also given concerning a mortar attack on W--- village by LIB #603 and IB #92, which was previously reported in the KHRG News Bulletin "Tatmadaw soldiers shell village, attack church and civilian property in Toungoo District, November 2011", in which shells hit the village church and destroyed five villagers’ houses. Tatmadaw soldiers also shot the statue of Mother Mary in W--- village and damaged pictures on the church walls; stole villagers' belongings, including money and staple foods; and destroyed villagers’ household supplies, livestock, and food."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (132K), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b36.html
Date of entry/update: 21 April 2012


Title: Papun Interview Transcript: Naw P---, November 2011
Date of publication: 11 April 2012
Description/subject: "This report contains the full transcript of an interview conducted during November 2011 in B--- village, Bu Tho Township, Papun District by a villager trained by KHRG to monitor human rights conditions. The villager interviewed 30-year-old hill field farmer Naw P---, who described how B--- villagers were forced to porter supplies for the Border Guard and Tatmadaw, and porter ammunition for the Democratic Karen Buddhist Army (DKBA). She also detailed an incident in which all of the B--- villagers were ordered by Border Guard Company Commander Hpu Meh Ka to repair the B--- village vehicle road and clear vegetation and discarded coconut skins from the roadside, and villagers were violently abused by Border Guard soldiers. Naw P--- also provided information pertaining to the killing of three villagers; the former B--- village head was killed by a remote controlled explosive device in approximately April 2011 whilst portering for the Tatmadaw, and a T--- villager named L--- was killed in 2010 by a Border Guard landmine when portering for the DKBA. Also in Papun District, the DKBA was reported to have killed 50-year-old N--- from W--- village. Tatmadaw, Border Guard, and DKBA soldiers were consistently implicated in the theft and looting of villagers' livestock, as well as demands for food. Tatmadaw soldiers were also described as issuing demands for building materials, such as bamboo poles."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (308K), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b35.html
Date of entry/update: 12 April 2012


Title: Toungoo Interview Transcript: Saw L---, December 2011
Date of publication: 04 April 2012
Description/subject: "This report contains the full transcript of an interview conducted during December 2011 in Day Loh Muh village tract, Daw Pa Ko Township, Toungoo District by a villager trained by KHRG to monitor human rights conditions. The villager interviewed Saw L---, who described the destruction of Y--- villagers' cardamom and coffee fields in 2006 for the construction of a Tatmadaw camp. He also noted the forced portering of building materials and food rations, the forced construction of a food storage building, and demands for bamboo poles in the period between 2006 and 2007. Saw L--- described how in 2010 and 2011, villagers from Y--- and surrounding villages were forced by Light Infantry Battalion (LIB) #306 to clear vegetation from the road between Lay Loh Day village and the military camp. Saw L--- also talked about the torture of A--- village heads for failing to comply with orders for food from LIB #306. He also detailed an incident in which a villager, Saw P--- from B--- village, was killed by Tatmadaw soldiers. Other concerns noted include food shortages, exacerbated by the rising price of food; the cost of medical treatment; and the prohibition on the transportation of medicine. The absence of accessible education beyond grade four, and the omission of the Karen language from the Y--- village school curriculum were also raised."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (381K), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b33.html
Date of entry/update: 12 April 2012


Title: Shan Human Rights Foundation Monthly Newsletter, April 2012 - extortion and robbery in Shan State
Date of publication: April 2012
Description/subject: Commentary: Rampant Robbery and Extortion... Robbery or random extortion during military patrols... A village family robbed of their money, valuables and other property, an old woman kicked, in Kaeng-Tung... Villager accused of holding back information, money extorted as punishment, in Lai-Kha... Villagers robbed of their money and chickens in Murng-Kerng... Villagers found fault with, money extorted, in Murng-Nai... Extortion as punishment after a skirmish, in Kun-Hing... Robbery and extortion at checkpoints on the roads... Situation of extortion at checkpoints along the main roads between Loi-Lem and Ta-Khi-Laek... Extortion at checkpoints in Paang Long Sub-Township, Loi-Lem Township... Money extorted from travelers in Lai-Kha... Extortion at “Ta Saang” bridge in Murng-Ton... More Money extorted from travelers in Murng-Ton.
Language: English
Source/publisher: Shan Human Rights Foundation (SHRF)
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 10 January 2013


Title: Thaton Situation Update: October 2010 to June 2011
Date of publication: 29 March 2012
Description/subject: "This report includes a situation update submitted to KHRG by a villager describing events occurring in Thaton District between October 2010 and June 2011. It contains updated information concerning the Democratic Karen Buddhist Army (DKBA) Border Guard transformations and Tatmadaw and Border Guard camp locations. It also provides details on the forced recruitment of villagers by former members of the DKBA, who were not accepted into the Border Guard, towards the establishment of pyi thu sit (people’s militia). While the villager who wrote this report notes a significant reduction in the frequency of human rights abuses, they also note the persistence and expansion of several kinds of abuses, namely: indirect demands for forced labour levied on villagers by the Tatmadaw through religious leaders; expropriation of villagers’ lands by extractive industry companies; monetary demands on villages in lieu of forced recruitment of villagers into local pyi thu sit units; and taxation and demands by the Border Guard, accompanied by threats for non-compliance. Furthermore, the villager expressed concerns regarding the impact of abnormal weather patterns on rice and plantation crops, which have exacerbated food scarcity and prompted many villagers to seek work abroad in Thailand and Malaysia."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (136K)
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b31.html
Date of entry/update: 12 April 2012


Title: Villagers used as human shields in Pa’an District, October 2011
Date of publication: 23 March 2012
Description/subject: "The following report was written by a villager trained by KHRG to document human rights abuses, and describes an incident that occurred in October 2011 in M--- village, H--- village tract, Dta Greh Township, in which soldiers from Tatmadaw LIB #230 forced villagers to carry injured soldiers and act as human shields from M--- village to T--- village, following fighting between LIB #230 and the KNLA. Male villagers were forced to porter, whilst women and children were used to protect the soldiers from KNLA gunfire. The villagers were detained overnight and released the following morning. Tatmadaw soldiers reportedly also looted villagers’ money and food upon entering M--- village."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (743K), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b29.html
Date of entry/update: 12 April 2012


Title: Dooplaya Situation Update: August to October 2011
Date of publication: 16 March 2012
Description/subject: "This report includes a situation update submitted to KHRG in January 2011 by a villager describing events occurring in Dooplaya District, during the period between August and October, 2011. The villager who wrote this report provides information concerning increasing military activity in Kyone Doh Township, including the confiscation of 600 acres of farmland for building a camp in Da Lee Kyo Waing town by Border Guard Battalion #1021, and the construction of new military camps, one by LIB #208 in Htee Poo Than village and another by the KPF near to Htee Poo Than village. The villager who wrote this report also noted demands from the Burmese Army that local villagers cover half of the cost of the construction of two bridges in Kyone Doh Township, as well as ongoing taxation demands from various armed groups, including the KNU, SPDC, Border Guard, DKBA, KPF, KPC and a distinct branch of the KPC known as Kaung Baung Hpyoo, and expressed serious concerns about the intended use of villagers to provide unpaid labour on infrastructure projects that will be implemented by civilian and military officials, as well as the severe degradation of forest and agricultural land due to an expansion of commercial rubber plantations..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (133K), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b28.html
Date of entry/update: 12 April 2012


Title: Pa’an Interview Transcript: Naw D---, November 2011
Date of publication: 14 March 2012
Description/subject: "This report contains the full transcript of an interview conducted during November 2011 in Dta Greh Township, Pa’an District by a villager trained by KHRG to monitor human rights conditions. The villager interviewed 70-year-old Naw D---, a dry paddy hill field farmer from M--- village, who described an incident that took place on October 29th 2011, during which a mortar was fired towards M--- village, and Tatmadaw soldiers from IB #230 looted a full sack of rice costing 750 baht (US $25) and 5,000 baht (US $166) in cash, as well as betelnuts and betel leaves whilst she was in her hill field and the rest of her family had fled their home and were hiding from the mortar fired in M--- village. Naw D--- discussed how this theft has considerably undermined her family’s economic and food security, and described how she threatened to inform the soldiers’ commander about the incident..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (134K), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b25.html
Date of entry/update: 12 April 2012


Title: Ongoing forced labour and movement restrictions in Toungoo District
Date of publication: 12 March 2012
Description/subject: "In Toungoo District between November 2011 and February 2012 villagers in both Than Daung and Tantabin Townships have faced regular and ongoing demands for forced labour, as well movement and trade restrictions, which consistently undermine their ability to support themselves. During the last few months, the Tatmadaw has demanded villagers to support road-building activities by providing trucks and motorcycles to send food and materials, to drive in front of bulldozers in potentially-landmined areas, to clean brush, dig and flatten land during road-building, and to transport rations during MOC #9 resupply operations as recently as February 7th 2012."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (314K), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12f1.html
Date of entry/update: 13 March 2012


Title: Papun Interview Transcript: Saw L---, June 2011
Date of publication: 02 March 2012
Description/subject: "This report contains the full transcript of an interview conducted in Dweh Loh Township, Papun District by a villager trained by KHRG to monitor human rights conditions. The villager interviewed Saw L---, a 49 year old Buddhist paddy farmer, who described demands for forced labour by Tatmadaw soldiers, including portering and guide duty, as well as clearing vegetation for the Border Guard. Saw L--- stated that villagers undertaking forced labour for the Tatmadaw were denied medical treatment and provided with unsuitable rations, such as stale rice. Forced recruitment into the Border Guard was also cited, with villagers from three different villages forced to pay US $389.61 in lieu of military service. Saw L--- also described Tatmadaw soldiers' demands for chicken and rice as putting pressure on already strained resources, and contributing to villagers' food insecurity. Saw L--- noted that some villagers who are unable to produce enough rice engage in daily wage labour in order to meet their basic food requirements, and that villagers who live in Lay Poh Hta village tract have developed support networks at the village level and reportedly share food with others in times of crisis."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (288K), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b23.html
Date of entry/update: 13 March 2012


Title: Thaton Interview Transcript: Saw S---, April 2011
Date of publication: 01 March 2012
Description/subject: "This report contains the full transcript of an interview conducted during April 2011 in Pa'an Township by a villager trained by KHRG to monitor human rights conditions. The villager interviewed Saw S---, a 43-year-old Buddhist farmer who, at the time of the interview, described ongoing demands by Tatmadaw soldiers and police, particularly for the production and delivery of building materials such as thatch shingles and bamboo poles, for the rebuilding of a police station and for villagers to perform messenger duty. He also noted that villagers faced arbitrary taxation demands for Karen State Festival and for sporting events organised by the Burma government. Other concerns include food shortages, worsened by flooding in the district, and a lack of accessible healthcare, as the nearest hospital is located in Pa'an town. To alleviate the strain associated with village head duties, Saw S--- described how villagers have implemented a system whereby the villagers serve as village head on a monthly basis, as well as negotiating with township officials to lessen the burden of taxation demands Villagers also reportedly share food to offset the impact of food shortages."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (168K)
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b21.html
Date of entry/update: 13 March 2012


Title: Papun Interview: Maung R---, August 2011
Date of publication: 29 February 2012
Description/subject: "This report contains the full transcript of an interview submitted to KHRG in August 2011 by a villager trained by KHRG to monitor human rights conditions in Bu Tho Township, Papun District. The villager interviewed Maung R---, a 31-year-old village head, who described extensive demands for forced labour, specifically for villagers to porter military rations, produce thatch shingles and bamboo poles, and tend to plantations owned by Border Guard soldiers. He also detailed demands for money including mandatory payments in lieu of recruitment for portering duties and arbitrary taxation. Threats against villagers were used to ensure compliance with these demands. Past instances of forced recruitment into the Border Guard were mentioned, as well as cases of direct violence, including an attack against villagers with three reported deaths. Other concerns expressed include the absence of basic medical care, and the poor quality of farmland which contributes to food insecurity and can force villagers to seek daily wage work in order to meet their basic food requirements. To mitigate this insecurity villagers employ a range of tactics including the sharing of food, as described by Maung R--- below."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (288K), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b20.html
Date of entry/update: 13 March 2012


Title: Toungoo Interview: Saw T---, September 2011
Date of publication: 28 February 2012
Description/subject: "This report contains the full transcript of an interview conducted during September 2011 in Than Daung Township by a villager trained by KHRG to monitor human rights conditions. The villager interviewed Saw T---, a 46 year old betelnut and cardamom plantation farmer who described movement and trade restrictions during 2011, specifically the closure of a vehicle road, that disrupted the transport of staple food supplies, as previously reported by KHRG in "Toungoo Situation Update: May to July 2011". Saw T--- described past instances of the theft and looting of food supplies and the burning of cardamom plantations and noted that the sale price of villagers' agricultural outputs has fallen, while the cost of basic commodities has risen. He also described previous incidents in which a villager portering for Tatmadaw soldiers was shot whilst attempting to escape, and one villager was killed and another seriously injured by landmines, providing insight into the way past experience with violence continues to circumscribe villagers' options for responding to abuse. Saw T---nonetheless described how villagers hide food to prevent theft, and covertly trade in food staples and other commodities to evade movement and trade restrictions. Saw T--- also noted that villagers have introduced a monthly rota system in order to share village head duties."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (388K), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b19.html
Date of entry/update: 29 February 2012


Title: Thaton Interview: U Kh---, December 2011
Date of publication: 17 February 2012
Description/subject: "This report contains the full transcript of an interview conducted during September 2011 by a villager trained by KHRG to monitor human rights conditions. The villager interviewed U Kh---, a 48-year-old farmer who described being forced to porter for Tatmadaw LIB #220 troops for four days at the beginning of September 2011 during which time he witnessed the looting of villagers' animals, as well as the arrest and detention of two P--- villagers to serve as recruits for Border Guard troops and subsequent demands for the payment of 200,000 kyat (US $259.74) in lieu of each recruit. He described the firing of mortars and small arms in civilian areas and detailed demands for food, weapons, and a motorboat to Border Guard troops. U Kh--- mentioned that he anticipated widespread food shortages as a result of extensive flood damage to paddy crops during the 2011 monsoon season and noted that demands for unpaid forced labour further strained villagers' ability to pursue their own livelihoods effectively. U Kh--- explained that villagers counter burdensome demands by negotiating with local commanders to reduce the number of recruits and pay a smaller sum than demanded in lieu of the provision of recruits"
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (287K)
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b17.html
Date of entry/update: 17 February 2012


Title: Papun Interview: Saw H---, March 2011
Date of publication: 08 February 2012
Description/subject: "This report contains the full transcript of an interview conducted during March 2011 in Bu Tho Township, Papun District, by a villager trained by KHRG to monitor human rights conditions. The villager interviewed Saw H---, a 34-year-old hillfield farmer and the head of N--- village. Saw H--- described an incident in which a 23-year-old villager stepped on and was killed by a landmine at the beginning of 2011, at the time when he, Saw H--- and three other villagers were returning to N--- after serving as unpaid porters for Border Guard soldiers based at Meh Bpa. Saw H--- also detailed demands for the collection and provision of bamboo poles for construction of soldiers’ houses at Gk’Ter Tee, as well as the payment of 400,000 kyat ((US $ 519.48) in lieu of the provision of porters to Maung Chit, Commander of Border Guard Battalion #1013, by villages in Meh Mweh village tract. These payments were described in the previous KHRG report "Papun Situation Update: Bu Tho Township, April 2011." Saw H--- also described demands for the provision of a pig to Border Guard soldiers three days before this interview took place and the beating of a villager by DKBA soldiers in 2010. He noted the ways in which movement restrictions that prevent villagers from travelling on rivers and sleeping in or bringing food to their farm huts negatively impact harvests and food security. Saw H--- explained that villagers respond to such concerns by sharing food amongst themselves, refusing to comply with forced labour demands, and cultivating relationships with non-state armed groups to learn the areas in which landmines have been planted."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (297K), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b14.html
Date of entry/update: 08 February 2012


Title: Thaton Interview: Naw D---, May 2011
Date of publication: 08 February 2012
Description/subject: "This report contains the full transcript of an interview conducted in May 2011 by a villager trained by KHRG to monitor human rights conditions. The villager interviewed Naw D---, a 48-year-old community leader in a government-controlled area of Pa’an Township, Thaton District, who described regular and ongoing demands for villagers to perform forced labour as messengers for local civilian and military officials, as well as challenges faced by villagers with regard to the cost and provision of education for children and access to healthcare. Naw D--- also expressed concerns regarding the debt burden on villagers who rent agricultural land and farm using rented animals and equipment; according to Naw D---, villagers are forced to provide landowners a disproportionate share of their harvested yields, leaving insufficient paddy for themselves and their families, leading to subsequent food shortages. She explained certain strategies villagers have adopted to address concerns, including the establishment of a community healthcare committee and a community health fund which work to assist villagers with health-related issues and to cover the costs incurred by villagers seeking care outside the village."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (287K), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b15.html
Date of entry/update: 08 February 2012


Title: Incident Report: Three villages fined after fighting between Tatmadaw and NSAGs, two villagers arrested, one killed
Date of publication: 03 February 2012
Description/subject: "The following incident report was written by a villager trained by KHRG to document human rights abuses in Dooplaya District and describes several incidents that occurred in the middle of January 2011. The villager who wrote this report describes the seizure of Tatmadaw supplies by KNLA troops, after which local Te--- villagers were forced to repay the cost of the supplies seized and Sh--- villagers were ordered to pay a fine for the theft. The report describes a third fine levied on Na—village after Tatmadaw troops met and fought with DKBA #999 troops in the Na--- area, as well as the looting of two Na--- villagers' homes after home-owners fled the fighting, the destruction of a third Na--- villager's zinc roof by small arms fire, and the killing of a fourth Na--- villager's pig. The villager who wrote this report also describes the arrest of two other Na--- villagers suspected of being KNLA soldiers, one of whom was subsequently killed. Despite guarantees that the other detained Na--- villager was not a KNLA soldier by the Na--- village head, a monk and one of his relatives, his release was not secured until an additional fine of 300,000 kyat (US $389.60) was paid."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (104K), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b12.html
Date of entry/update: 07 February 2012


Title: Papun Situation Update: Bu Tho Township, May to June 2011
Date of publication: 03 February 2012
Description/subject: "This report includes a situation update submitted to KHRG in August 2011 by a villager describing events occurring in Bu Tho Township, Papun District, between May and June 2011. It contains detailed information about demands by Border Guard Battalion #1013 troops for a total of 10,400,000 kyat (US $13,506.49) from 65 villages, each of which was ordered to pay a share of the total in lieu of providing villagers to serve as unpaid porters. The villager who wrote this report also details villagers’ concerns regarding excessive fees for school attendance, abnormal rains leading to damage to crops and subsequent food insecurity, as well as the collection of arbitrary fees by an organisation that purported to assist families to pay funeral and burial costs, but which subsequently disbanded. The villager who wrote this report points repeatedly to ongoing arbitrary taxation by public officials and expresses villagers’ frustrations at what they perceive to be a lack of material change at the village-level in eastern Burma since the November 2010 elections."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (279K) , html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b13.html
Date of entry/update: 07 February 2012


Title: Thaton Situation Update: Thaton Township, August 2011
Date of publication: 20 January 2012
Description/subject: "This report includes a situation update submitted to KHRG in August 2011 by a villager describing ongoing abuses occurring in Thaton Township in 2011, including frequent demands for forced labour from six villages, for villagers to serve as guards at a Tatmadaw LIB #218 camp, and for payments in lieu of forced labour. It outlines some difficulties faced by civilians in pursuit of their livelihoods, including the negative impact of forced labour demands, the lack of employment options available for villagers attempting to support their families and the destruction of paddy crops caused by flooding during the 2011 monsoon. It details restrictions on access to healthcare, specifically the high cost of medical treatment at government clinics and the denial of access for healthcare groups, and also expresses villagers’ frustrations at obstacles to children’s education caused by the need for children to work to support their families and the prohibitive costs of school attendance and supplies."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: html, pdf (245K)
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b7.html
Date of entry/update: 23 January 2012


Title: Nyaunglebin Situation Update: August to October 2011 [News Bulletin]
Date of publication: 09 December 2011
Description/subject: "This report includes a situation update submitted to KHRG in November 2011 by a villager describing events occurring in Ler Doh Township, Nyaunglebin District between August and October 2011. The report describes the an incident of forced labour in which villagers were forced to clear undergrowth from a palm oil plantation at IB #60 military headquarters, as well as arbitrary demands for villagers to provide money, firewood, wooden logs and food to Tatmadaw troops. The villager who wrote this report notes that governmental administrative reforms at the village tract level have resulted in increased demands for payment from civilian officials at a time when flooding in flat areas of paddy cultivation adjacent to the Sittaung River at the end of the 2011 monsoon has substantially impacted villagers’ food security. The villager also raises local communities’ concerns regarding the proposed construction of a dam on the Theh Loh River; and requirements that civilians provide guarantees that non-state armed groups will not attack Tatmadaw troops, which villagers fear will lead to reprisals from Tatmadaw soldiers if fighting does occur. This report also documents several ways in which villagers in Ler Doh Township have responded to abuses, including the formation of Mu Kha Poe village security groups to monitor Tatmadaw troop activity and warn other community members of incoming Tatmadaw patrols and attacks;; and cooperation with other villagers and with local community-based aid groups to secure food support, communication equipment, education materials and medical treatment."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: html, pdf (867K)
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2011/khrg11b52.html
Date of entry/update: 18 January 2012


Title: Shan Human Rights Foundation Monthly Newsletter, December 2011 - Robbery and extortion in Shan State
Date of publication: December 2011
Description/subject: Commentary: Stealing and Extortion of Livestock; Random shooting and stealing of cattle; Villager’s cows shot and stolen, tractor conscripted for forced labour, in Kae-See and Si-Paw; A draught buffalo shot and stolen, a truck taken for forced labour, in Kae-See; A pig extorted, a cow shot and stolen, in Murng-Nai; A buffalo shot and stolen, porters conscripted, in Murng-Kerng; A cow killed, its legs cut and stolen, in Murng-Nai; Shooting and stealing of pigs; A pig shot and stolen in Lai-Kha; A pig forcibly taken away in front of its owner, in Murng-Nai; A pig shot and stolen while the owners were away, in Kun-Hing; A pig stolen, villagers forced to serve as guides and porters, in Kae-See; Extortion of chickens; Extortion of chickens in Murng-Nai; Extortion of chickens and other food stuff, conscription of vehicles, in Murng-Kerng.
Language: English
Source/publisher: Shan Human Rights Foundation (SHRF)
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 10 January 2013


Title: Nyaunglebin Situation Update: Ler Doh Township, May to July 2011
Date of publication: 18 November 2011
Description/subject: "This report includes a situation update submitted to KHRG in August 2011 by a villager describing events occurring in Ler Doh [Kyauk Kyi] Township, Nyaunglebin District, between May and July 2011. It provides details on human rights abuses committed by Tatmadaw Light Infantry Battalion (LIB) #345 including: demands for forced labour clearing vegetation around Tatmadaw camps, serving as set tha at Tatmadaw camps, and collecting and delivering building materials and firewood; the imposition of movement restrictions and the requirement that villagers purchase travel permission documents to access agricultural workplaces; arbitrary demands for food and payment; and an order to dismantle field huts. This report also notes that villagers were directly ordered by LIB #345 Captain Thet Zaw Win not to discuss or report demands for payment, and describes cooperation between public and military sector officials to levy demands for payment. This report also mentions that some villagers have responded to abuses by negotiating with Tatmadaw officers to avoid orders to dismantle their field huts, and by moving to areas beyond consolidated Tatmadaw control to access humanitarian support and pursue livelihoods activities."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (222K), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2011/khrg11b45.html
Date of entry/update: 23 January 2012


Title: Thaton Situation Update: June to October 2011
Date of publication: 18 November 2011
Description/subject: "This report includes a situation update submitted to KHRG in November 2011 by a villager describing events occurring in Pa'an Township, Thaton District between June and October 2011, specifically forced labour demands for villagers to clear vegetation from roads, to rebuild Tatmadaw Border Guard camps, to porter for three-month periods, and to guide and serve as human shields for Tatmadaw soldiers on active patrol duty. This report also details demands for villages to provide recruits and payments to support recruits' salaries to Tatmadaw Border Guard Battalion #1014; arbitrary demands for payment in lieu of the provision of villagers to fill demands for forced labour; as well as an explicit threat of violence issued against village heads if they failed to comply with a Battalion #1014 demand to send villagers as porters. The report further documents the imposition of movement restrictions preventing villagers from accessing agricultural workplaces, and raises concerns about the future food security of residents living in areas proximate to the Salween River whose paddy fields were flooded and destroyed during the last rainy season."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: html, pdf (245K)
Date of entry/update: 23 January 2012


Title: Pa'an Situation Update: September 2011
Date of publication: 03 November 2011
Description/subject: "This report includes a situation update submitted to KHRG in September 2011 by a villager describing events occurring in T'Nay Hsah Township, Pa'an District during September 2011. It details an incident in which a soldier from Tatmadaw Border Guard #1017 deliberately shot at villagers in a farm hut, resulting in the death of one civilian and injury to a six-year-old child. The report further details the subsequent concealment of this incident by Border Guard soldiers who placed an M16 rifle and ammunition next to the dead civilian and photographed his body, and ordered the local village head to corroborate their story that the dead man was a Karen National Liberation Army (KNLA) soldier. The report also relates villagers' concerns regarding the use of landmines by both KNLA and Border Guard troops, which prevent villagers from freely accessing agricultural land and kill villagers' livestock and pets, and also relates an incident in September 2011 in which a villager was severely maimed when he stepped on a landmine that had been placed outside his farm."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (219K), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2011/khrg11b43.html
Date of entry/update: 23 January 2012


Title: Toungoo Situation Update: April to July 2011
Date of publication: 13 October 2011
Description/subject: "This report includes a situation update submitted to KHRG in August 2011 by a villager describing events occurring in Toungoo District between April and July 2011. It describes a May 2011 attack on villages and the destruction of paddy and rice stores in the Maw Thay Der area of Tantabin Township, previously reported by KHRG, and relates the following human rights abuses by Tatmadaw forces: restrictions on movement and trade; including regular closure of vehicle roads and levying of road tolls; forced production and delivery of thatch shingles and bamboo poles; forced portering of military rations; and the theft and looting of villagers' livestock. This report also explains how community members share food when confronting food insecurity, and attempt to ensure that children receive education despite financial barriers and teacher shortages."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (175K), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2011/khrg11b37.html
Date of entry/update: 29 January 2012


Title: Dooplaya Situation Update: August 2011
Date of publication: 12 October 2011
Description/subject: "This report includes a situation update submitted to KHRG in August 2011 by a villager describing events occurring in Kawkareik, Kya In and Waw Raw (Win Yaw) townships of Dooplaya District between April and August 2011. The villager describes human rights abuses committed by soldiers from at least three Tatmadaw battalions, including: shelling of villages, resulting in civilian injuries and destruction of houses and food supplies; demands for the fabrication and delivery of thatch and bamboo, and for the provision of food; restrictions on villagers; detention, physical abuse, and killing of villagers; shooting of villagers; and a demand for villagers, including children, to clear the perimeter of a Tatmadaw camp. The villager also expresses concern that these abuses disrupt villagers' livelihoods and the provision of education for children."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (210K), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2011/khrg11b36.html
Date of entry/update: 29 January 2012


Title: Civilian and Military order documents: March 2008 to July 2011
Date of publication: 05 October 2011
Description/subject: "This report includes translated copies of 207 order documents issued by military and civilian officials of Burma's central government, as well as non-state armed groups now formally subordinate to the state army as 'Border Guard' battalions, to village heads in eastern Burma between March 2008 and July 2011. Of these documents, at least 176 were issued from January 2010 onwards. These documents serve as primary evidence of ongoing exploitative local governance in rural Burma. This report thus supports the continuing testimonies of villagers regarding the regular demands for labour, money, food and other supplies to which their communities are subject by local civilian and military authorities. The order documents collected here include demands for attendance at meetings; the provision of money and food; the production and delivery of thatch, bamboo and other materials; forced recruitment into armed ceasefire groups; forced labour as messengers and porters for the military; forced labour on bridge construction and repair; the provision of information on individuals, households and non-state armed groups; and the imposition of movement restrictions. In almost all cases, demands were uncompensated and backed by implicit or explicit threats of violence or other punishments for non-compliance. Almost all demands articulated in the orders presented in this report involved some element of forced labour in their implementation."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (656K)
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2011/khrg1103.html
Date of entry/update: 31 January 2012


Title: Tenasserim Interview: Saw P---, Received in May 2011
Date of publication: 01 October 2011
Description/subject: "This report contains the full transcript of an interview conducted during May 2011 in Te Naw Th’Ri Township, Tenasserim Division by a villager trained by KHRG to monitor human rights conditions. The villager interviewed Saw P---, the 36-year-old head of a village in which Tatmadaw soldiers maintain a continuous presence. Saw P--- described the disappearance of a male villager who has not been seen since February 2010 when he was arrested by Tatmadaw soldiers as he was returning from his hill plantation, on suspicion of supplying food assistance to Karen National Liberation Army (KNLA) troops. Saw P--- also described human rights abuses and livelihoods difficulties faced regularly by villagers, including: forced labour, specifically road construction and maintenance; taxation and demands for food and money; theft of livestock; and movement restrictions, specifically the imposition of road tolls for motorbikes and the prohibition against travel to villagers’ agricultural workplaces, resulting in the destruction of crops by animals. Saw P--- also expressed concerns about disruption of children’s education caused by the periodic commandeering of the village school and its use as a barracks by Tatmadaw soldiers. He explained how villagers respond to abuses and livelihoods challenges by avoiding Tatmadaw soldiers, harvesting communally, sharing food supplies and inquiring at the local jail to investigate the disappearance of a fellow villager."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (243K) html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2011/khrg11b33.html
Date of entry/update: 31 January 2012


Title: Tenasserim Interview: Saw C---, Received in May 2011
Date of publication: 09 September 2011
Description/subject: "This report contains the full transcript of an interview conducted prior to Burma's November 2010 elections in Te Naw Th’Ri Township, Tenasserim Division by a villager trained by KHRG to monitor human rights conditions. The villager interviewed Saw C---, a 30-year-old married hill field farmer who told KHRG that he was appointed to the position of village head by his local VPDC in an area of Te Naw Th’Ri Township that is frequently accessed by Tatmadaw troops, and in which there is no KNLA presence. Saw C--- described human rights abuses faced by residents of his village, including: demands for forced labour; theft and looting of villagers' property; and movement restrictions that prevent villagers from accessing agricultural workplaces. He also cited an incident in which a villager was shot and killed by Tatmadaw soldiers while fishing in a nearby river, and his death subsequently concealed; and recounted abuses he witnessed when forced to porter military rations and accompany Tatmadaw soldiers during foot patrols, including the theft and looting of villagers’ property and the rape of a 50-year-old woman. Saw C--- told KHRG that villagers protect themselves in the following ways: collecting flowers from the jungle to sell in local markets in order to supplement incomes, failing to comply with orders to report to a Tatmadaw camp, and using traditional herbal remedies due to difficulties accessing healthcare. He noted, however, that these strategies can be limited, for example by threats of violence against civilians by Tatmadaw soldiers or scarcity of plants commonly used in herbal remedies."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (169K)
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2011/khrg11b29.html
Date of entry/update: 01 February 2012


Title: Papun Interview: Maung Y---, February 2011
Date of publication: 02 September 2011
Description/subject: "This report contains the full transcript of an interview conducted in February 2011 in Dweh Loh Township, Papun District, by a villager trained by KHRG to monitor human rights conditions. The villager interviewed Maung Y---, a 32 year-old married hill field farmer, who described an incident that occurred on February 5th 2011, in which he and eight other villagers were arrested at gunpoint by Tatmadaw Border Guard Battalion #1013 soldiers and arbitrarily detained. During this time, Maung Y--- reported that they were forced to porter military rations and sweep for landmines using basic tools. He described how one villager was denied access to medical treatment and forced to porter despite serious illness, and reported that families of the detained villagers were forced to pay arbitrary amounts of money to the Battalion #1013 troops in order to secure their release. Maung Y--- also reported that, after this incident, his village was ordered by Battalion #1013 to produce and deliver 7,000 thatch shingles, as well as to provide four more villagers to serve as porters. In response to this, Maung Y--- reported that villagers had, at the time of interview, refused to comply with these forced labour demands."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (684K), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2011/khrg11b28.html
Date of entry/update: 01 February 2012


Title: Papun Situation Update: Bu Tho Township, April 2011
Date of publication: 02 September 2011
Description/subject: "This report includes a situation update submitted to KHRG in April 2011 by a villager describing events occurring in Bu Tho Township, Papun District, during the period between January and April 2011. The villager describes the embezzlement of funds earmarked for road repair by government officials; increased taxation on vehicles, road use and the transport of goods; and demands for payment in lieu of forced labour levied by Border Guard Battalion #1013."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (266K) , html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2011/khrg11b27.html
Date of entry/update: 01 February 2012


Title: Papun Situation Update: Dweh Loh Township, May 2011
Date of publication: 02 September 2011
Description/subject: "This report includes a situation update submitted to KHRG in May 2011 by a villager describing events occurring in Dweh Loh Township, Papun District between January and April 2011. It contains information concerning military activities in 2011, specifically resupply operations by Border Guard and Tatmadaw troops and the reinforcement of Border Guard troops at Manerplaw. It documents twelve incidents of forced portering of military rations in Wa Muh and K'Hter Htee village tracts, including one incident during which villagers used to porter rations were ordered to sweep for landmines, as well as the forced production and delivery of a total of 44,500 thatch shingles by civilians. In response to these abuses, male villagers remove themselves from areas in which troops are conducting resupply operations, in order to avoid arrest and forced portering. This report additionally registers villagers' serious concerns regarding the planting of landmines by non-state armed groups in agricultural workplaces and the proposed development of a new dam on the Bilin River at Hsar Htaw. It includes an overview of gold-mining operations by private companies and non-state armed groups along three rivers in Dweh Loh Township, and documents abuses related to extractive industry, specifically forced relocation and land confiscation."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (628K - OBL version; 1.1MB - original), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2011/khrg11b26.html
http://www.khrg.org/khrg2011/khrg11b26.pdf
Date of entry/update: 01 February 2012


Title: Papun Incident Reports: November 2010 to January 2011
Date of publication: 24 August 2011
Description/subject: This report contains 12 incident reports written by a villager trained by KHRG to monitor human rights conditions, based on information provided by 12 different villagers living in hiding sites in Lu Thaw Township, Papun District between November 2010 and January 2011.[1] The twelve villagers described human rights concerns for civilians prior to and during displacement to their current hiding sites, including: deliberate firing of mortars and small arms into civilian areas; burning and destruction of houses, food and food preparation equipment; theft and looting of villagers' animals and possessions; and use of landmines by the Tatmadaw, non-state armed groups, and local gher der 'home guard' groups in civilian areas, resulting in at least one civilian death and two civilian injuries. The reports register villagers' serious concerns about food security in hiding areas beyond Tatmadaw control, caused by effective limits on access to arable land due to the risk of attack when villagers cultivating land proximate to Tatmadaw camps, depletion of soil fertility in cultivable areas, and a drought during the 2010 rainy season which triggered widespread paddy crop failure.[2] To address the threat of Tatmadaw attacks targeting villagers, their food stores and livelihoods activities, villagers reported that they form gher der groups to monitor and communicate Tatmadaw activity; utilise early-warning systems; and communicate amongst themselves and with non-state armed groups to share information about Tatmadaw troop movements. Two villagers stated that the deployment of landmines by gher der groups and KNLA soldiers prevents access to civilian areas by Tatmadaw troops and facilitates security for villagers to pursue their agricultural activities. Another villager described how his community maintained communal agricultural projects to support families at risk from food shortages. These reports were received by KHRG in May 2011, along with other information concerning the situation in Papun District, including 11 other incident reports, 25 interviews, 137 photographs and a general update on the situation in Lu Thaw Township.[3]
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (840K), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2011/khrg11b25.html
Date of entry/update: 12 February 2012


Title: Nyaunglebin Interview: Naw Sa---, May 2011
Date of publication: 05 August 2011
Description/subject: "This report contains the full transcript of an interview conducted by a KHRG researcher in May 2011 with a villager from Ler Doh Township, Nyaunglebin District. The researcher interviewed Naw Sa---, a 26-year-old villager who described human rights and humanitarian conditions in her village, in a mixed administration area under effective Tatmadaw control. Naw Sa--- cited the following human rights concerns: forced relocation and displacement; demands for provision of food; shelling of civilian areas, resulting in civilian injuries; arrest and detention of villagers; physical violence against detained villagers; forced labour, including sentry duty; and movement restrictions. She also explained the challenges to accessing medical care and adequate education for children faced by members of her community; and described how villagers returned to work covertly on their agricultural projects in order to protect their livelihoods, after they were ordered by the Tatmadaw to abandon their village."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (690K), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2011/khrg11b23.html
Date of entry/update: 12 February 2012


Title: Nyaunglebin Interview: Saw Th---, May 2011
Date of publication: 02 August 2011
Description/subject: "This report contains the full transcript of an interview conducted by a KHRG researcher during May 2011 with a villager from Ler Doh Township, Nyaunglebin District. The researcher interviewed Saw Th---, a 37-year-old farmer and village elder, who described his experiences living in Tatmadaw-controlled relocation sites for over two years and in a village in a mixed-administration area, in which various Tatmadaw battalions and non-state armed groups operated. Saw Th--- described the following abuses: forced relocation; movement restrictions; taxation and demands; and forced labour including forced portering and camp maintenance. He said he believed that forced labour demands have decreased due to media attention on the issue. Saw Th--- also explained that villagers pursued agricultural livelihoods activities secretly while living in forced relocation sites, to lessen the impact of movement restrictions; and used herbal medicines because medical infrastructure and access to medical care were inadequate."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (694K), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2011/khrg11b20.html
Date of entry/update: 18 February 2012


Title: Nyaunglebin Interview: Saw S---, May 2011
Date of publication: 30 July 2011
Description/subject: "This report contains the full transcript of an interview conducted by a KHRG researcher in May 2011 with a villager from Ler Doh Township, Nyaunglebin District. The researcher interviewed Saw S---, a 17 year-old student who compared his experiences living in a Tatmadaw-controlled relocation site, and in his own village in a mixed-administration area under effective Tatmadaw control. Saw S--- described the following abuses: killing of villagers; forced relocation; movement restrictions; taxation and demands; theft and looting; and forced labour including portering, sentry duty, camp maintenance and road construction. Saw S--- also discussed the impact of forced labour and movement restrictions on livelihoods; access to, and cost of, health care; and constraints on children's access to education, including the prohibition on Karen-language education. In order to address these issues, Saw S--- explained that villagers attempt to bribe military officers with money to avoid relocation, and with food and alcohol to lessen forced labour demands; conceal from Tatmadaw commanders that villagers sometimes leave the village to work without valid permission documents; and go into hiding to protect their physical security when conflict occurs near the village."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (744K), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2011/khrg11b19.html
Date of entry/update: 18 February 2012


Title: Nyaunglebin Interview: Naw P---, May 2011
Date of publication: 26 July 2011
Description/subject: "This report contains the full transcript of an interview conducted by a KHRG researcher in May 2011 with a villager from Ler Doh Township, Nyaunglebin District. The researcher interviewed Naw P---, a 40-year-old farmer who described her experiences living in a Tatmadaw-controlled relocation site, and in her original village in a mixed-administration area under effective Tatmadaw control. Naw P--- described the following human rights abuses: rape and sexual violence; indiscriminate firing on villagers by Tatmadaw soldiers; forced relocation; arrest and detention; movement restrictions; theft and looting; and forced labour, including use of villagers as military sentries and porters. Naw P--- also raised concerns regarding the cost of health care and about children's education, specifically Tatmadaw restrictions on children's movement during perceived military instability and the prohibition of Karen-language education. In order to address these concerns, Naw P--- told KHRG that some villagers pay bribes to avoid forced labour and to secure the release of detained family members; lie to Tatmadaw commanders about the whereabouts of villagers working on farms in violation of movement restrictions; and organise covert Karen-language education for their children."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (158K)
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2011/khrg11b18.html
Date of entry/update: 19 February 2012


Title: Toungoo Interviews: March and April 2011
Date of publication: 20 July 2011
Description/subject: "This report contains the full transcripts of three interviews conducted during March and April 2011 in Tantabin Township, Toungoo District by a villager trained by KHRG to monitor human rights conditions. The three female interviewees described the following abuses: attacks on villages, villagers and livelihoods; killing of villagers; theft and looting; taxation and demands; forced displacement; and forced labour, including the production and supply of building materials and forced portering. They also raised concerns regarding food shortage, the provision of education for children during displacement caused by Tatmadaw attacks, and access to healthcare. One of the women explained that villagers communicate with non-state armed groups and other villagers to share information about Tatmadaw movements, prepare secret caches of food in the forest outside their village in case of a Tatmadaw attack, and hold school classes outside of their village in agricultural areas during displacement caused by Tatmadaw attack. These interviews were received along with other information from Toungoo District, including a general update on the situation in Toungoo District, ten incident reports, seven other interviews and 350 photographs.Toungoo Interviews: March and April 2011
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (286K), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2011/khrg11b16.html
Date of entry/update: 19 February 2012


Title: Shan Human Rights Foundation Monthly Newsletter, July 2011 - land grabbing, forced relocation and extortion in Shan State
Date of publication: July 2011
Description/subject: Commentary: Confiscation and Extortion... Forcible rice procurement continues in Kaeng - Tung... Confiscation of rice fields in Kaeng-Tung... Farmland confiscated for building new military base in Kun-Hing... Confiscation of rice fields in Murng – Nai... Leased rice field threatened to be forcibly taken, rent not paid in full, in Murng - Ton... Houses forcibly taken in Murng-Ton... Extortion of money from travelers worsens in Kun-Hing... People forced to pay for election expenses long after poll, in Kaeng-Tung... Extortion of money intensifies, becomes more frequent, for constructing military bases, in Kun-Hing... High interest charged on a loan without advance knowledge, in Kun-Hing.
Language: English
Source/publisher: Shan Human Rights Foundation (SHRF)
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 10 January 2013


Title: Pa'an interviews: Conditions for villagers returned from temporary refuge sites in Tha Song Yang
Date of publication: 06 May 2011
Description/subject: "This report contains the full transcripts of seven interviews conducted between June 1st and June 18th 2010 in Dta Greh Township, Pa'an District by a villager trained by KHRG to monitor human rights conditions. The villager interviewed seven villagers from two villages in Wah Mee Gklah village tract, after they had returned to Burma following initial displacement into Thailand during May and June 2009. The interviewees report that they did not wish to return to Burma, but felt they had to do so as the result of pressure and harassment by Thai authorities. The interviewees described the following abuses since their return, including: the firing of mortars and small arms at villagers; demands for villagers to porter military supplies, and for the payment of money in lieu of the provision of porters; theft and looting of villagers' houses and possessions; and threats from unexploded ordnance and the use of landmines, including consequences for livelihoods and injuries to civilians. All seven interviewees also raised specific concerns regarding the food security of villagers returned to Burma following their displacement into Thailand."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (836K), html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2011/khrg11b5.html
Date of entry/update: 27 February 2012


Title: Shan Human Rights Foundation Monthly Newsletter, May 2011 - extortion and land grabbing in Shan State
Date of publication: May 2011
Description/subject: Commentary: Confiscation and Extortion... Situation of land confiscation... Confiscation of cultivated land for state infrastructure in Murng-Nai and Kaeng- Tung... Land confiscated for reselling in Murng-Pan... Rice fields confiscated and cultivated by military using forced labour, in Murng - Pan... Situation of abuses related to civilian vehicles... Confiscation of civilian vehicles in Nam-Zarng,Ta-Khi-Laek and Kaeng-Tung... Confiscation of civilian motorcycles in Loi-Lem... Extortion of money from civilian vehicles at checkpoints in Southern and Eastern Shan State... Villagers’ pigs extorted, chickens stolen, in Kae-See... Situation of extortion and stealing of villagers livestock... Extortion of chickens, forced labour, in Kun-Hing... Situation of other types of extortion... Extortion in Kaeng-Tung.
Language: English
Source/publisher: Shan Human Rights Foundation (SHRF)
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 10 January 2013


Title: Tatmadaw attacks destroy civilian property and displace villages in northern Papun District
Date of publication: 08 April 2011
Description/subject: "Tatmadaw forces continue to deliberately target civilians, civilian settlements and food supplies in northern Papun District. On February 25th 2011 shelling directed at communities in Saw Muh Bplaw, Ler Muh Bplaw and Plah Koh village tracts in Lu Thaw Township displaced residents of 14 villages as they sought temporary refuge at hiding sites in the forest. After villagers fled, Tatmadaw troops looted civilians' possessions, burned parts of settlement areas and destroyed buildings and food stores in Dteh Neh village. No civilian deaths or injuries were reported to result from this shelling; local village heads confirmed that all villagers affected managed to flee to safe locations during the shelling, many because of warnings received through a locally-developed system to alert community members of attacks. This report is informed by KHRG photo documentation, as well as interviews with and written testimony from a total of nine village heads, village tract leaders and village officials from communities located or hiding in the affected area. An additional 41 interviews conducted during February and March 2011 in Lu Thaw Township were also drawn upon."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: pdf (1.35MB) html
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2011/khrg11b4.html
Date of entry/update: 27 February 2012


Title: Shan Human Rights Foundation Monthly Newsletter, December 2010 - Robbery and extortion in Shan State
Date of publication: December 2010
Description/subject: Commentary: Extortion and Stealing of Livestock... Situation of shooting and stealing of villagers’ cattle in Shan State... Villager’s buffalos shot for meat in Murng-Ton... Extortion and stealing of chickens and cattle in Kun-Hing... A farmer’s buffalo, used for ploughing rice field, shot and stolen, in Larng-Khur... Vegetables extorted, cow shot for meat, in Murng-Kerng... Villager’s Buffalo shot dead in Murng- Yai... Situation of extortion and stealing of pigs and chickens... Extortion and stealing of chickens and pigs in Murng-Kerng... Extortion of chickens, rice and money, in Loi-Lem... Stealing of chickens in Lai-Kha... Intimidation and extortion of chickens in Larng-Khur.
Language: English
Source/publisher: Shan Human Rights Foundation (SHRF)
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 10 January 2013


Title: SPDC and DKBA order documents: January 2009 to June 2010
Date of publication: 14 September 2010
Description/subject: Abstract: "This report includes translated copies of 94 order documents issued by State Peace and Development Council Army and Democratic Karen Buddhist Army officers to village heads in Karen State between January 2009 and June 2010. These documents serve as supplementary evidence of ongoing exploitative local governance in rural Burma. The report thus supports the continuing testimonies of villagers regarding the regular demands for labour, money, food and other supplies to which their communities are subject by local military forces. The order documents collected here include demands for attendance at meetings; the provision of money and food; the production and delivery of thatch shingles and bamboo poles; forced labour as messengers and porters for the military; forced labour on bridge repair, the provision of information on individuals and households; and restrictions on trade. In almost all cases, such demands are uncompensated and backed by an implicit or explicit threat of violence or other punishment for non-compliance. Almost all demands articulated in the orders presented in this report involve some element of forced labour in their implementation.
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG #2010-05)
Format/size: pdf (604K)
Date of entry/update: 26 September 2010


Title: Supporting local responses to extractive abuse: Commentary on the ND-Burma report "Hidden Impact..."
Date of publication: 06 September 2010
Description/subject: "Eighteen years of KHRG field research indicates that regular extractive abuses by the SPDC Army and NSAGs threaten local livelihoods and are a fundamental human rights concern for villagers throughout eastern Burma. These abuses appear to be the product of the established SPDC Army and NSAG practice of supporting military units via extraction of significant material and labour resources from the local civilian population, enforced by implicit or explicit threats of violence. These findings were recently affirmed by ND-Burma, which last week released a report documenting the prevalence and impact of arbitrary taxation for communities across Burma. This commentary is designed to support ND-Burma’s report, by offering additional recommendations based upon evidence that civilians have developed and employed a range of strategies for protecting themselves from extractive abuse or its consequences. These responses vary between contexts, and have been formulated based on first-hand awareness of the local dynamics of abuse and potential space for safe response. Seeking to understand, and then support, these local protection efforts should be the starting point for any external actors interested in improving human rights conditions in eastern Burma in both the short and long term."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG #2010-C1)
Format/size: pdf (219K)
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2010/khrg10c1
Date of entry/update: 08 September 2010


Title: The Hidden Impact of Burma’s Arbitrary & Corrupt Taxation
Date of publication: 01 September 2010
Description/subject: "The Network for Human Rights Documentation- Burma (ND-Burma) released its first report, "We have to give them so much that our stomachs are empty of food: The Hidden Impact of Burma's Arbitrary and Corrupt Taxation." Based on 342 interviews, the report reveals how widespread, arbitrary taxation damages the country's economy, exacerbates poverty, and contributes to the ongoing and systematic violation of the people's most basic right to an adequate standard of living, housing, and education. ND-Burma's report reveals how the Burma's ruling military regime, the State Peace and Development Council (SPDC), and its supporting agencies are responsible for this repressive taxation system which includes the appropriation of non-monetary assets including the arbitrary confiscation of land, property and forced labor, indicating serious breaches of international laws. While the majority of the people of Burma live in abject poverty, the regime spends a paltry (CIA) 1.3% of GDP on health and education, and Burma is the only country in the region whose military budget is greater than that of health and education combined. ND Burma's research revealed that households and businesses are excessively taxed leaving more and more people struggling to survive. Not only is taxation excessive but the poor administration of the system means that households and businesses do not know when taxes have to be paid and the size of their tax liabilities. This is coupled with a system of government expenditure that is not directed towards the needs of Burma's population, instead resources are allocated to a bloated military and economically wasteful and expensive infrastructure projects. A villager from Mon State describes the burden of taxation, 'On average, we villagers have to provide military government organizations with more than 10,000 Kyat a month (about 10 USD). Even though we have no food to eat, we still have to pay them. At the hands of the SPDC we have to work harder but we still have not enough food for our families.' "
Language: English, Burmese
Source/publisher: Network for Human Rights Documentation - Burma (ND Burma)
Format/size: pdf (4.2MB - English; 5.7MB - Burmese)
Alternate URLs: http://www.burmalibrary.org/docs09/NDD_tax-report_en.pdf
http://www.bur.nd-burma.org/images/stories/pdf/report-bur.pdf
Date of entry/update: 31 August 2010


Title: Shan Human Rights Foundation Monthly Newsletter, September 2010 - Robbery and extortion in Shan State
Date of publication: September 2010
Description/subject: Commentary: Rampant Extortion... Situation of forcible procurement of rice and other Forcible procurement of peanut in Kae-See... Situation of forcible rice procurement in Murng-Ton... Villagers forced to give money instead of crop quotas and as protection fees for growing opium in Kae-See... Situation of forcible rice procurement in Kaeng-Tung Situation of other types of extortion... People forced to pave roads and buy fire fighting poles... Intimidation and extortion of money from people from Thailand in Ta-Khi-Laek... Extortion of money during issuance of Identity cards in Kaeng-Tung... Money extorted for traditional social activities in Kaeng-Tung... Motorcycle driver doubly fined for failing to show respect to military authorities in Kaeng-Tung...
Language: English
Source/publisher: Shan Human Rights Foundation (SHRF)
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 10 January 2013


Title: Self-protection under strain: Targeting of civilians and local responses in northern Karen State
Date of publication: 31 August 2010
Description/subject: "The SPDC Army continues to attack civilians and civilian livelihoods nearly two years after the end of the 2005-2008 SPDC Offensive in northern Karen State. In response, civilians have developed and employed various self-protection strategies that have enabled tens of thousands of villagers to survive with dignity and remain close to their homes despite the humanitarian consequences of SPDC Army practices. These protection strategies, however, have become strained, even insufficient, as humanitarian conditions worsen under sustained pressure from the SPDC Army, prompting some individual villagers and entire communities to re-assess local priorities and concerns, and respond with alternative strategies - including uses of weapons or landmines. While this complicates discussions of legal and humanitarian protections for at-risk civilians, uses of weapons by civilians occur amidst increasing constraints on alternative self-protection measures. External actors wishing to promote human rights in conflict areas of eastern Burma should therefore seek a detailed understanding of local priorities and dynamics of abuse, and use this understanding to inform activities that broaden civilians' range of feasible options for self-protection, including beyond uses of arms..."
Language: English, Burmese, Karen
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG #2010-04)
Format/size: pdf (1.9MB - full report, English; 986K - Summary, Burmese; 804K - Summary, Karen)
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2010/khrg1004_briefer_Burmese.pdf
http://www.khrg.org/khrg2010/khrg1004_briefer_Karen.pdf
Date of entry/update: 06 October 2010


Title: Southern Papun District: Abuse and the expansion of military control
Date of publication: 30 August 2010
Description/subject: This report presents information on the human rights situation in village tracts along the southern end of the Ka Ma Maung to Papun road in southern Dweh Loh and Bu Tho townships. SPDC and DKBA units maintain control over strategic points in lowland areas of this part of southern Papun, including relocation sites and vehicle roads, and support their presence by levying a range of exploitative demands on the local civilian population. SPDC and DKBA forces also continue to conduct offensive military operations in upland areas of southern Papun; for villagers living beyond permanent military control, these activities entail exploitative abuses, movement restrictions and, in some cases, violence including military attacks. Communities in both lowland and upland areas employ a variety of strategies to protect themselves and their livelihoods from SPDC and DKBA abuses and the effects of abuse. Strategies documented in this report include negotiation; paying fines in lieu of compliance with demands; discreet semi- or false compliance, or overt non-compliance or refusal to meet demands; strategic displacement to areas beyond consolidated SPDC or DKBA control; and actively monitoring local security conditions to inform decisions about further self-protection responses. This is the last of four reports detailing the situation in Papun District's southern townships that have been released in August 2010. Incidents described below occurred between September 2009 and April 2010.
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG #2010-F8)
Format/size: pdf (779K)
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2010/khrg10f8
Date of entry/update: 06 October 2010


Title: Central Papun District: Village-level decision making and strategic displacement
Date of publication: 27 August 2010
Description/subject: This report details a sequence of events in one village in central Papun District in late 2009. The report illustrates how the community responded to exploitative and violent human rights abuses by SPDC Army units deployed near its village in order to avoid or reduce the harmful impact on livelihoods and physical security. It also provides a detailed example of the way local responses are often developed and employed cooperatively, thus affording protection to entire communities. This report draws extensively on interviews with residents of Pi--- village, Dweh Loh Township, who described their experiences to KHRG field researchers, supplemented by illustrations based on these accounts by a Karen artist. This is the third of four field reports documenting the situation in Papun District's southern townships that will be released in August 2010. The incidents and responses documented below occurred in November 2009.
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG #2010-F7)
Format/size: pdf (692K; 1.9MB- illustrated)
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2010/khrg10f7_illustrations.pdf
Date of entry/update: 06 October 2010


Title: Central Papun District: Abuse and the maintenance of military control
Date of publication: 23 August 2010
Description/subject: This report presents information on the human rights situation in village tracts in central Papun District located near the northern section of the Ka Ma Maung to Papun Road, south of Papun Town in Bu Tho Township. Communities must confront regular threats to their livelihoods and physical security stemming from the strong SPDC and DKBA presence in, and control of the area, as these military units support themselves by extracting significant material and labour resources from the local civilian population. Villagers have reported movement restrictions and various exploitative abuses, including arbitrary taxation, forced portering, forced labour fabricating and delivering materials to military units, forced mine clearance and forced recruitment for military service. Some communities have also reported threats or acts of violent abuse, typically in the context of enforcing forced labour orders or where villagers have been accused of contacting or assisting KNLA forces operating in the area. This is the second of four reports detailing the situation in Papun District's southern townships that will be released in August 2010. Incidents documented in this report occurred between April 2009 and February 2010.
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG #2010-C1)
Format/size: pdf (779K)
Date of entry/update: 06 October 2010


Title: Shan Human Rights Foundation Monthly Newsletter, July 2010 - extortion and robbery in Shan State
Date of publication: July 2010
Description/subject: Commentary: No Right to Security of Person... Arbitrary arrest, detention, torture and extortion, in Lai-Kha... Threat and intimidation during forced labour in Kun-Hing... Stealing of vegetables and intimidation in Murng-Nai... Forced conscription and extortion cause people to flee, in Lai-Kha... Child forced labour and extortion in Lai-Kha... Money for forced labour in Nam-Zarng... Extortion and intimidation cause people to flee, in Murng-Nai... Unfair house-phones allotment in Kaeng-Tung... Fire victim unfairly fined in Murng-Nai... Situation of routine extortion and forced labour in Naa Khann village tract in Murng-Nai.
Language: English
Source/publisher: Shan Human Rights Foundation (SHRF)
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 10 January 2013


Title: SPDC shelling destroys villagers' rubber plantations in Dooplaya District
Date of publication: 20 May 2010
Description/subject: "Two villagers have lost nearly 3,000 rubber trees in a fire started when SPDC soldiers from IB #548 fired mortars into their plantations as the men fled in anticipation of fighting between IB #548 and a patrol of KNLA troops on April 23rd 2010. The men will attempt to replant their plantations, but have each effectively lost four-year investments of labour and money..."
Language: English, Karen
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG #2010-B8)
Format/size: pdf (329K - English version; 501K - Karen version)
Alternate URLs: SPDC shelling destroys villagers' rubber plantations in Dooplaya District
Date of entry/update: 10 October 2010


Title: Attacks on cardamom plantations, detention and forced labour in Toungoo District
Date of publication: 13 May 2010
Description/subject: This field report documents recent human rights abuses committed by SPDC soldiers against Karen villagers in Toungoo District. Villagers in SPDC-controlled areas continue to face heavy forced labour demands that severely constrain their livelihoods; some have had their livelihoods directly targeted in the form of attacks on their cardamom fields. In certain cases individuals have also been subjected to arbitrary detention and physical abuse by SPDC soldiers, typically on suspicion of having had contact with the KNU/KNLA after being caught in violation of stringent movement restrictions. Villagers living in or travelling to areas beyond SPDC control, meanwhile, continue to have their physical security threatened by SPDC patrols that practice a shoot-on-sight policy in such areas. This report covers incidents between January and April 2010.
Language: English, Karen
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG #2010-F4)
Format/size: pdf (918K - English version; 1251K - Karen version)
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/reports/karenlanguage/khrg10f4_karen_language.pdf
Date of entry/update: 10 October 2010


Title: Shan Human Rights Foundation Monthly Newsletter, April 2010 - Robbery and extortion in Shan State
Date of publication: April 2010
Description/subject: Commentary: Extortion of Money and Property... Villagers accused of giving false information about opium cultivation, money extorted, in Murng Nai... Forced labour, fault finding and extortion, in Nam-Zarng... Stealing of villager’s vegetables in Murng-Nai... Extortion of money from travelers, in Murng-Ton... Random extortion in Murng-Ton... Random extortion in Kae-See... Extortion during Shan New Year in Kaeng-Tung... Extortion during a football tournament in Kaeng-Tung... Extortion during issuance of identity cards in Kun-Hing... A tractor driver robbed of his money in Loi-Lem... Villagers robbed of their chickens in Murng-Kerng... Stealing of villagers oranges in Murng-Nai... Forced recruitment and extortion in Lai-Kha and Kae-See.
Language: English
Source/publisher: Shan Human Rights Foundation (SHRF)
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 10 January 2013


Title: Forced Labour, Movement and Trade Restrictions in Toungoo District
Date of publication: 01 March 2010
Description/subject: "This field report documents the continuing and worsening demands for forced labour and restrictions on movement and trade imposed on villagers in Toungoo District by the SPDC army. These exploitative and restrictive practices undermine the livelihoods of both individuals living under SPDC control and villagers who have opted to live in hiding. Heavy demands for forced labour limit the time that villagers in relocation sites or SPDC-controlled areas can devote to securing their livelihoods; this strain is exacerbated by increasing restrictions on villagers' freedom to travel for farming and trade, the latter of which is essential for obtaining basic foodstuffs and other necessities in many parts of Toungoo. This situation in turn reduces the availability and accessibility of essential food and medicines to villagers in hiding, who continue to resist SPDC exploitation despite grave risks to their physical security. This report covers incidents between June 2009 and January 2010."
Language: English, Karen
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG #2010-F2)
Format/size: pdf (678K - English version; 690K - Karen version)
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/reports/karenlanguage/khrg10f2_karen_language.pdf
Date of entry/update: 12 October 2010


Title: Shan Human Rights Foundation Monthly Newsletter, March 2010 - Killing, gang rape, beatings, robbery, and extortion in Shan State
Date of publication: March 2010
Description/subject: COMMENTARY: “Crimes Against Humanity or War Crimes”... Random shooting and killing in Larng-Khur... Gang-Rape in Lai-Kha... Villagers beaten up en masse, causing many to flee, in Kun-Hing... Village headman and his deputy severely beaten up, livestock extorted, villagers forced to serve as guides, in Kun-Hing... Village headman severely beaten in Larng-Khur... A villager robbed of his cows, shot at, in Kae-See... Cattle stolen, a displaced couple forced to serve as unpaid porters, in Lai-Kha... A cow shot dead and stolen in Larng-Khur.... Harassment and extortion in Lai-Kha... Extortion as irregular taxes in Nam-Zarng... Money extorted for building house in Nam-Zarng.
Language: English
Source/publisher: Shan Human Rights Foundation (SHRF)
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 10 January 2013


Title: Shan Human Rights Foundation Monthly Newsletter, January 2010 - Killing, torture, rape, arbitrary detention, beating, destruction of crops, Robbery and extortion in Shan State
Date of publication: January 2010
Description/subject: Commentary... Villagers arbitraily arrested, tortured and killed, in Lai-Kha... Rape in Murng-Kerng... Severe beating, causing loss of consciousness, in Kun-Hing... Beating and forced portering in Murng-Kerng... Extortion for construction of state infrastructure, in Murng-Ton.. Looting and destruction of villagers' crops, in Kun-Hing... Money repeatedly extorted for funeral rites, villagers harassed, in Lai-Kha... Extortion for religious and social activities, in Kaeng-Tung... Extortion and land confiscation for road construction, forcible military training, in Murng-Paeng... Money extorted from motorcycle owners in Kun-Hing.
Language: English
Source/publisher: Shan Human Rights Foundation (SHRF)
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 10 January 2013


Title: Military movements, forced labour and extortion in Nyaunglebin District
Date of publication: 15 May 2009
Description/subject: "In some areas of Nyaunglebin District, north-western Karen State, frontline army camps from which SPDC troops withdrew at the end of 2008 remain empty. Elsewhere in the district, however, the Burma Army is active with regular patrols amongst villages in both the plains and hills. In those areas where the SPDC maintains a consolidated hold on the civilian population, Burma Army personnel continue to demand forced labour and extort money and supplies from local communities. This report describes the military situation in Nyaunglebin District from January to March 2009 as well as the Burma Army's continued use of forced labour and extortion of the local population..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Field Reports (KHRG #2009-F10)
Format/size: pdf (651 KB)
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2009/khrg09f10.html
Date of entry/update: 30 October 2009


Title: SPDC and DKBA road construction, forced labour and looting in Papun District
Date of publication: 31 March 2009
Description/subject: "Late last year, during SPDC reconstruction work on two main roads leading from Papun town to SPDC camps in the Kyauk Nya and Dagwin areas of Bu Tho Township, KNU/KNLA forces took the opportunity to launch secret guerrilla attacks against the SPDC site. Believing that local Karen villagers had cooperated with KNLA forces, the SPDC began to force villagers and convict porters to work on the roads and also killed and looted villagers' animals and property when it patrolled villages in the area. DKBA forces have also recently demanded forced labour and forced recruitment from Papun villagers during this time. The incidents detailed in this report occurred between December 2008 and February 2009..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Field Reports (KHRG #2009-F5)
Format/size: pdf (546 KB)
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2009/khrg09f5.html
Date of entry/update: 31 October 2009


Title: SPDC and DKBA extortion and forced labour in Thaton District
Date of publication: 26 November 2008
Description/subject: "Militarisation in practice is not always uniform. As the SPDC and DKBA rotate their army units in Thaton District, western Karen State, villagers confront shifting patterns of authority and abuse. While villagers living around the SPDC's army camp at Yoh Gkla continue to face forced labour, extortion and threats of arbitrary detention and execution, the local SPDC battalion that has been deployed there since July 2008 has patrolled less frequently than its predecessor. This decreased patrolling has led to a weakened ability to enforce movement restrictions on villagers. This report documents incidents which took place between July and October 2008..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Field Reports (KHRG #2008-F16)
Format/size: pdf (520 KB)
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2008/khrg08f16.html
Date of entry/update: 31 October 2009


Title: Daily demands and exploitation: Life under the control of SPDC and DKBA forces in Pa'an District
Date of publication: 18 September 2008
Description/subject: "In SPDC- and DKBA-controlled Pa'an District villagers face regular, and sometimes daily, demands for labour, money, food and other supplies from local military units. With troop rotation ensuring the constant presence of active troops patrolling these areas, villagers are given little respite from the demands which place a constant drain on their time, incomes and food supplies. In addition to forced labour, extortion and arbitrary taxation, looting by soldiers is rife and families face increased and arbitrary fees for their children's education. Such continual exploitation undermines villagers' livelihoods and makes family survival unsustainable, leading many villagers to instead seek more sustainable livelihood opportunities in other areas of Burma or neighbouring Thailand. This report focuses on the situation in Dta Greh township of Pa'an District, detailing incidents which occurred between January and July 2008..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Field Reports (KHRG #2008-F13)
Format/size: pdf (573 KB)
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2008/khrg08f13.html
Date of entry/update: 01 November 2009


Title: Forced labour and extortion in Pa'an District
Date of publication: 08 August 2008
Description/subject: "At a time when civilians in Pa'an District are already struggling with rising food prices and unemployment, an increasing number of villagers are being subjected to forced labour and extortion by local SPDC and DKBA forces. This is especially true in eastern Karen State, near the Thoo Mweh (Moei) river, where DKBA commanders are forcing villagers to ignore their own livelihoods in order to help these leaders cultivate their personal rubber plantations. The result of these abuses is a worsening food crisis and constant economic migration to other areas both in Burma and in neighbouring Thailand, places where villagers hope to find more sustainable employment opportunities. This report describes the situation in the Dta Greh and T'Nay Hsah townships of Pa'an District from January to June 2008..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Field Reports (KHRG #2008-F11)
Format/size: pdf (511 KB)
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2008/khrg08f11.html
Date of entry/update: 01 November 2009


Title: Military expansion and exploitation in Nyaunglebin District
Date of publication: 05 August 2008
Description/subject: "With the SPDC Army's continued expansion in Nyaunglebin District, local villagers not under military control have had to once again flee into the surrounding forest while troops have forcibly interned other villagers in military-controlled relocation sites. These relocation sites, typically in the plains of western Nyaunglebin, alongside army camps or SPDC-controlled vehicle roads, serve as containment centres from which army personnel appropriate labour, money, food and supplies to support the military's ongoing expansion in the region. Extortion by military officers operating in Nyaunglebin District has included forced 'donations' allegedly collected for distribution to survivors of Cyclone Nargis in the Irrawaddy Delta. This field report looks at the situation in Nyaunglebin up to the end of May 2008..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Field Reports (KHRG #2008-F10)
Format/size: pdf (697 KB)
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2008/khrg08f10.html
Date of entry/update: 01 November 2009


Title: The role of coercive measures in forced migration/internal displacement in Burma/Myanmar
Date of publication: 17 March 2008
Description/subject: Conclusion: "Most relevant reports and surveys I have been able to access state essentially that people from all parts of Burma leave home either in obedience to a direct relocation order from the military or civil authorities or as a result of a process whereby coercive measures imposed by the authorities play a major role in forcing down household incomes to the point where the family cannot survive. At this point, leaving home may seem to be the only option. These factors, which include direct forced relocation, forced labour, extortion and land confiscation, operate in, are affected by and exacerbate a situation of widespread poverty, rising inflation and declining real incomes. In other words, people leave home due to a combination of coercive and economic factors. One has to consider the whole process leading to displacement rather than a single, immediate cause. Where coercive measures, as described in this article, are involved, the resulting population movement falls under the Guiding Principles even if the situation that actually triggers movement, frequently food insecurity, may also be described in economic terms."
Author/creator: Andrew Bosson
Language: English
Source/publisher: Andrew Bosson
Format/size: pdf (47K)
Date of entry/update: 17 March 2008


Title: Forced labour, extortion and the state of education in Dooplaya District
Date of publication: 16 October 2007
Description/subject: "As world attention focused last month on the large-scale public demonstrations in Rangoon and other major urban centres around Burma, the magnitude of domestic frustration over the military's systematic impoverishment of the civilian population became evident to the international community. This frustration is keenly felt by the people of Dooplaya District in southern Karen State and found expression last month in local anti-regime gatherings. Amongst other abuses, forced labour and extortion in their many guises have been leading causes in the economic collapse and resultant frustration with militarisation in Dooplaya District. A crucial factor making these abuses even more oppressive in Dooplaya and other areas of Karen State as compared with central Burma is the multiplicity of armed groups which compete with each other and with the region's civilian administration for the spoils of village-level exploitation. Across Dooplaya District the State Peace and Development Council (SPDC) Army; the regime's district and township-level civilian administration; the Democratic Karen Buddhist Army (DKBA); and the Karen Peace Force (KPF) all continue to fatten themselves off of the toil of village labour. Amongst other detrimental consequences, this persistent predation has undermined opportunities for educational advancement and the application of such education beyond traditional village livelihoods or subservience within the local system of militarisation..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Field Report (KHRG #2007-F8)
Format/size: pdf (586 MB)
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2007/khrg07f8.html
Date of entry/update: 07 November 2009


Title: Forced migration/internal displacement in Burma - with an emphasis on government-controlled areas
Date of publication: May 2007
Description/subject: This report is a preliminary exploration of forced migration/internal displacement in Burma/Myanmar in two main areas. The first is the status in terms of international standards, specifically those embodied in the Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement, of the people who leave home not because of conflict or relocation orders, but as a result of a range of coercive measures which drive down incomes to the point that the household economy collapses and people have no choice but to leave home. Some analysts describe this form of population movement as "economic migration" since it has an economic dimension. The present report, however, looks at the coercive nature of the pressures which contribute to the collapse of the household economy and argues that their compulsory and irresistible nature brings this kind of population movement squarely into the field of forced migration, even though the immediate cause of leaving home may also be described in economic terms... The second area is geographic. The report looks at those parts of Burma not covered by the IDP Surveys of the Thailand Burma Border Consortium, which concentrate on the conflict and post-conflict areas of Eastern Burma. It hardly touches on conflict-induced displacement since most parts of Burma covered in these pages, including the major cities, are government-controlled, and there is little overt military conflict in these States and Divisions. Within these parts of the country, the report looks at the coercive measures referred to above. It also carries reports of direct relocation by government agents through which whole rural and urban communities are removed from their homes and either ordered to go to specific places, or else left to their own devices. The report annexes contain more than 500 pages of documentation on forced displacement and causes of displacement in Arakan, Chin, Kachin and Eastern and Northern Shan States as well as Irrawaddy, Magwe, Mandalay, West Pegu, Rangoon and Sagaing Divisions. It also has a section on displacement within urban and peri-urban areas.
Author/creator: Andrew Bosson
Language: English
Source/publisher: Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre (IDMC)
Format/size: pdf (717K)
Alternate URLs: http://www.ibiblio.org/obl/docs4/IDMC-Burma_report_mai07.pdf
Date of entry/update: 15 May 2007