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Internal Displacement/Forced Migration
See also the sections on Refugees, Civil War and Human Rights (Discrimination)

Individual Documents

Title: Tollgates upon tollgates: En route with extortion along the Asian Highway (Field Reports)
Date of publication: 05 October 2009
Description/subject: "As the town of Myawaddy on the Thai-Burma border has grown through increased trade, so too have efforts by local military forces to extract revenue from the workers, traders and travellers who pass through it. With increasing exploitative and military pressures in the surrounding rural areas, many local villagers have also joined the ranks of those seeking economic refuge—or just opportunities to work or buy and sell goods—in town and across the border. Villagers in the area live under a motley patchwork of political and military authorities that operate over 20 checkpoints along the Asian Highway between Myawaddy and Rangoon. At each checkpoint transport trucks and passenger vehicles must pay tolls while travellers may be searched and forced to give 'donations' or 'tea money' to inspecting soldiers. Fixed tolls and ad hoc extortion are used to support the checkpoint itself and the military personnel controlling it. This report includes information collected in August and September 2009..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Right Group Field Report (KHRG #2009-F17)
Format/size: pdf (354 KB)
Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2009/khrg09f17.html
Date of entry/update: 28 October 2009


  • Internal displacement/forced migration: standards and mechanisms -- texts and commentary

    Websites/Multiple Documents

    Title: Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement (English)
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement (Sgaw Karen)
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Web-page of the Representative of the Secretary-General on the human rights of internally displaced persons
    Description/subject: UN Standards, mechanisms, mandate and report of the RSG, other documents.
    Language: English, French, Spanish, Arabic, Chinese, Russian
    Source/publisher: United Nations
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Individual Documents

    Title: Defining 'forced migration’ in Burma - discussion
    Date of publication: 22 April 2008
    Description/subject: Most Burmese people fleeing their homes do so for a combination of reasons. The root causes for leaving, however, determine which ‘category’ they belong to: ‘internally displaced persons’ (IDPs) or ‘economic migrants’. There is some discussion as to whether people leaving their homes due to exhaustion of livelihoods options are IDPs according to the Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement1 – or not. Ashley South and Andrew Bosson present their views below...
    Author/creator: Ashley South and Andrew Bosson
    Language: English, Burmese
    Source/publisher: "Forced Migration Review" No. 30
    Format/size: pdf (Burmese, 123K; English, 269K)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.fmreview.org/FMRpdfs/FMR30Burmese/16.pdf
    Date of entry/update: 30 November 2008


    Title: The international community’s Responsibility to Protect
    Date of publication: 22 April 2008
    Description/subject: "In the face of continuing grave violations of human rights by the Burmese government against its own civilians, it is imperative that the international community start to respond to Burma in terms of the Responsibility to Protect (R2P) principle..."
    Author/creator: Kavita Shukla
    Language: English, Burmese
    Source/publisher: "Forced Migration Review" No. 30
    Format/size: pdf (Burmese, 255K; English, 432K)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.fmreview.org/FMRpdfs/FMR30Burmese/7-9.pdf
    Date of entry/update: 30 November 2008


    Title: Handbook for Applying the Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement
    Date of publication: 1999
    Description/subject: "The Handbook for Applying the Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement was reviewed by UN agencies and NGOs at a meeting at the UN in April 1999. It was decided that the UN would publish and disseminate it together with the Manual on Field Practice in Internal Displacement. The two volumes complement one another and together provide a sound basis for undertaking protection and assistance activities on behalf of internally displaced persons. It is my hope that this Handbook will be widely used by field staff working with internally displaced populations. It can raise awareness to the needs of the internally displaced, measure conditions on the ground, train staff in working with the displaced, and promote compliance by governments and nonstate actors with the provisions of the Guiding Principles. It also can help displaced communities better understand their rights and the responsibilities of governments and non-state actors toward them..." Francis M. Deng Representative of the Secretary-General on Internally Displaced Persons.
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: UN OCHA, The Brookings Institution Project on Internal Displacement
    Format/size: pdf (532K)
    Date of entry/update: 26 March 2007


    Title: Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement (Burmese/ ျမန္မာဘာသာ)
    Language: Burmese/ ျမန္မာဘာသာ
    Source/publisher: UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR)
    Format/size: pdf (344K)
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


  • Internal displacement/forced migration: specialist organisations and resources

    Websites/Multiple Documents

    Title: Back Pack Health Worker Team (BPHWT) home page
    Description/subject: Mission Statement: "The Back Pack Health Worker Team (BPHWT) is an independent, nonprofit, multi-ethnic organization dedicated to providing primary health care to ethnic groups and vulnerable populations in armed conflict and rural areas of Burma, where access to healthcare is otherwise unavailable. Furthermore, by equipping communities with the skills and knowledge necessary to manage their own health issues, the Back Pack Health Worker Team is dedicated to the long-term, sustainable development of a healthy society in Burma. To accomplish its mission, BPHWT utilizes mobile health teams to provide a range of primary medical care, maternal and child health services, and community health education and prevention programs to internally displaced and vulnerable populations in Burma."..... Emergency Assistance Team; Services; Reports and Publications; About Us; Partners; Contact Us; Links... How to Help: Volunteer; Wish List; Donations Download Videos
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Back Pack Health Worker Team (BPHWT)
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 01 November 2010


    Title: Brookings Institution
    Description/subject: Some docs on IDPs in Burma
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Displacement Solutions
    Description/subject: NGO working on housing, land and property rights (HLP) http://mebel-it.com.ua/shkafyi/dlya-odezhdyi http://getenergy.ru/?page_id=10
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Displacement Solutions
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 29 August 2009


    Title: Forced Migration Online
    Description/subject: Definitions, photos, resources, links, journals and Digital Library (129 results for "Myanmar OR Burma"; 21 results for "Rohingya"). The documents tend to be very heavy pdf image files. "The FMO digital library is a unique online resource. It contains approximately 3,000 full-text documents in electronic format which can be searched, read online and printed as required. The documents have been selected from the library of the Refugee Studies Centre at the University of Oxford and Tufts' University Fletcher School and Feinstein Famine Center and include both recent and historical grey (unpublished) literature and research materials. In future, the Digital Library will include further documents from Tufts' University Fletcher School and Feinstein Famine Center together with collections from Columbia University's Program on Forced Migration and The Refugee Studies Program at The American University in Cairo. In addition, full-text articles from back issues of key journals in the field will be available."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Refugee Studies Centre, Oxford
    Format/size: Most documents in pdf
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Free Burma Rangers
    Description/subject: "... The Free Burma Rangers is an organization dedicated to freedom for the people of Burma. "De Oppresso Liber" is the motto of the Free Burma Rangers and we are dedicated in faith to the establishment of liberty, justice, equal rights and peace for all the people of Burma. The Free Burma Rangers support the restoration of democracy, ethnic rights and the implementation of the International Declaration of Human Rights in Burma. We stand with those who desire a nation where God's gifts of life, liberty, justice, pursuit of happiness and peace are ensured for all... MISSION: The mission of the Free Burma Rangers is to bring help, hope and love to the oppressed people of Burma. Its mission is also to help strengthen civil society, inspire and develop leadership that serves the people and act as a voice for the oppressed... ACTIONS: The Free Burma Rangers (FBR), conduct relief, advocacy, leadership development and unity missions among the people of Burma... Relief: ..."...FBR has issued some of the best documented reports on internal displacement/forced migration
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Free Burma Rangers
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 21 May 2004


    Title: Guide to forced migration resources on the Web
    Description/subject: Updated July 2006... "This guide provides examples of the types of resources that will eventually be included in the RSC portal, or Forced Migration Online. It is not an exhaustive inventory..." Contents: I. Purpose; II. Background and Overviews; - Starting Points: - Introduction to the Issues/Definitions of Key Terms; - Country Profiles; III. Finding Out about Research: - Research Collections; - Directories; - Indexes/Journal Contents Search Services; - Bibliographic Tools: Bibliographies, Library Catalogues; - Alerting Services; - Lists. IV. Information Sources (full-text): - News; - Journals/Newsletters; - Annual Reports/Yearbooks; - International Instruments: Specific Titles, Collections; - Policy Statements; - Operational Resources: Operational Guidance Materials, Principles of Humanitarian Assistance and Conflict ;Management - Evaluation Reports. V. Non-Textual Information Sources: - Statistics/Datasets; - Multimedia; VI. Internet Search Tools: - Subject Guides; - Search Engines.
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Forced Migration Online, Refugee Studies Centre, University of Oxford
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: IDP material by the Border Consortium (TBC)
    Description/subject: For IDP material (from 2002), scroll down to IDPs and choose a year....very useful and well-researched and written reports.
    Language: English, Burmese/ ျမန္မာဘာသာ
    Source/publisher: The Border Consortium (TBC)
    Format/size: html, pdf
    Alternate URLs: http://www.theborderconsortium.org/
    Date of entry/update: 11 November 2014


    Title: Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre (IDMC) - Myanmar page
    Description/subject: Highly recommended. Well-organised site. In "list of sources used" are most of the main reports from 1995 bearing on IDPs (though the reports from 1995 to 1997 are missing - temporarily, one hopes) and more Burma pages updated June 2001. Go to the home page for links on IDPs, including the Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement.
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: IDMC
    Format/size: html
    Alternate URLs: http://www.internal-displacement.org (Homepage)
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Karen Human Rights Group - internal displacement
    Description/subject: Scroll down and click on FORCED RELOCATION, LAND CONFISCATION, STRATEGIC DISPLACEMENT or whichever Issue category you think may relate to internal displacement.
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: html, pdf
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/gallery/13/1058
    Date of entry/update: 14 June 2006


    Title: Protection of Civilians in Armed Conflict: Forced Displacement
    Description/subject: Resources,, links, definitions, UN and other reports... "Today's humanitarian crises - caused by conflict or by natural disaster - have resulted in unprecedented waves of human displacement, both within and across borders. Those displaced within borders, known as "internally displaced persons" (IDPs) are today estimated to number over 50 million worldwide (of which 25-30 million have lost their homes due to conflict), far exceeding the global refugee population (11-12 million)..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA)
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 06 December 2010


  • Health and internal displacement/forced migration

    Websites/Multiple Documents

    Title: Back Pack Health Worker Team (BPHWT) home page
    Description/subject: Mission Statement: "The Back Pack Health Worker Team (BPHWT) is an independent, nonprofit, multi-ethnic organization dedicated to providing primary health care to ethnic groups and vulnerable populations in armed conflict and rural areas of Burma, where access to healthcare is otherwise unavailable. Furthermore, by equipping communities with the skills and knowledge necessary to manage their own health issues, the Back Pack Health Worker Team is dedicated to the long-term, sustainable development of a healthy society in Burma. To accomplish its mission, BPHWT utilizes mobile health teams to provide a range of primary medical care, maternal and child health services, and community health education and prevention programs to internally displaced and vulnerable populations in Burma."..... Emergency Assistance Team; Services; Reports and Publications; About Us; Partners; Contact Us; Links... How to Help: Volunteer; Wish List; Donations Download Videos
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Back Pack Health Worker Team (BPHWT)
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 01 November 2010


    Title: Back Pack Health Worker Team (BPHWT) Reports and Publications
    Description/subject: Annual and mid-term reports from 2002; 10-year report (1998-2009); special reports; proposals (2010, 2011) survey (2011)
    Language: English, Burmese, Thai
    Source/publisher: Back Pack Health Worker Team ( BPHWT)
    Format/size: htmlk, pdf
    Date of entry/update: 05 September 2011


    Individual Documents

    Title: Situation Update: Conflict and Displacement in Burma’s Border Areas 31st August 2011
    Date of publication: 31 August 2011
    Description/subject: "Armed conflict in Burma’s Karen, Shan and Kachin States continues to fuel large‐scale displacement of civilians both internally and into neighbouring countries. Between 5,000 and 7,000 civilians remain in temporary, unofficial sites along the Thai‐Burma border in Thailand's Tak Province; approximately 20,000 remain internally‐displaced in Kachin State along the border with China; and thousands have been forced to flee their homes in Shan State due to ongoing armed conflict. Community‐based groups continue in their efforts to provide assistance to these populations, who have no access to international protection mechanisms, and little or no assistance from international humanitarian organisations. The shortage of funding to such community‐based aid networks is a serious cause for concern, particularly with a high likelihood of further fighting resulting in more displacement. There is an urgent need for protection mechanisms and humanitarian assistance for civilians fleeing conflict and human rights abuses in Burma..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Back Pack Health Worker Team
    Format/size: pdf (360K)
    Date of entry/update: 05 September 2011


    Title: Provision of Primary Health Care among Internally Displaced Persons and Vulnerable Populations of Burma - BPHWT 2010 Annual Report:
    Date of publication: 10 June 2011
    Description/subject: 1) Executive Summary Over sixty years of civil war in Burma have resulted in the displacement of hundreds of thousands of people. These people have fled their homes, been obliged to go into hiding for their own safety and have faced forced relocation. Compounding the loss of homes and security is a lack of basic human rights, including the right to health. People living along the country’s borders as well as inside ethnic nationalities’ areas have been severely affected. The Back Pack Health Worker Team (BPHWT) has been providing primary health care for over ten years in the conflict and rural areas of Burma, where access to healthcare is otherwise unavailable. The BPHWT provides a range of medical care, community health education and prevention, and maternal and child healthcare services to internally displaced persons (IDPs) and other vulnerable community members in Burma. Doctors and health workers from Karen, Karenni, and Mon States established the BPHWT in 1998. The organization initially included 32 teams, comprising 120 health workers. Over the years and in response to increasing demand, the number of teams has gradually increased. In 2010, the BPHWT included 81 teams, with each team being comprised of 3 to 5 health workers. BPHWT teams now target displaced and vulnerable communities with no other access to healthcare in Karen, Karenni, Mon, Arakan, Kachin, and Shan States, and the Tenasserim Division. The teams deliver a range of health care programs to a target population of 180,000 IDPs and other vulnerable people. The BPHWT aims to equip people with the skills and knowledge necessary to manage and address their own health problems, while working towards long-term sustainable development with respect to community healthcare. In 2010, the BPHWT continued to work with communities in its target areas to implement its three health programs, namely Medical Care Program, Mother and Child Healthcare Program and Community Health Education and Prevention Program. Three new Back Pack teams were created in Kachin, Shan-Kayah and Palaung areas to serve communities with no other access to healthcare. BPHWT also worked in collaboration with Burma Medical Association, National Health and Education Committee and ethnic health organizations serving the Karen, Karenni, Mon, Shan and Palaung communities to plan, design and implement a health and human rights survey in eastern Burma; the results of this survey were published in October 2010 in the report entitled Diagnosis: Critical - Health and Human Rights in Eastern Burma. Displaced Mother with a Child 2010 4 The BPHWT’s Ten Years Report 1998-2009, detailing the BPHWT’s programs and organizational development from 1998 through 2009, was also published in 2010. The BPHWT continued to conduct its regular monitoring and evaluation activities throughout 2010. In addition, BPHWT workers were given technical support by the Global Health Access Program (GHAP) to implement an Impact Assessment Survey so as to evaluate the outcomes of the BPHWT’s three health programs in target communities. The results of this survey will be published in 2011. At the March 2010 Donors’ Meeting, it was decided that an external evaluation would be conducted, in order to assess the BPHWT’s programs and management structure. A consultant was recruited and is currently conducting consultations with target communities, partner organizations and BPHWT medics, staff and Leading Group. The results of this evaluation will be published in 2011. After the November 2010 elections in Burma, increased armed conflict and conflictrelated abuses in areas of Karen State opposite Thailand’s Kanchanaburi, Tak and Mae Hong Song Provinces drove large displacement of populations, both inside Karen State and into Thailand. On the Thai side of the border, the pattern of civilian influxes evolved. The first large battles in November led to larger influxes of Burmese civilians openly fleeing into Thailand, where they were provided with temporary shelter in sites recognised by Thai authorities. But by the end of December, Thai authorities had shut down the last of the temporary shelter sites and the community network, under the overall coordination of the Mae Tao Clinic, was supporting a total of 9852 newly-displaced people - comprised of 2039 households with 7867 men and 3779 women. Out of these 9852 displaced people, there were 5212 children under five years of age among the newly-displaced people in hiding sites along the Thai-Burma border areas. Since the escalations in armed conflict and displacement in the aftermath of Burma’s elections, the Back Pack Health Worker Team has worked with the network of community organizations providing assistance to civilians displaced by ongoing conflict and human rights abuses along the Thai-Burma border. Inside Karen State, eight teams of Back Pack Health Workers were deployed to provide health services to civilians affected by the increases in conflict and conflict-related abuses. The BPHWT also set up a number of borderline mobile Out- Patient Department (OPD) clinics, to provide health care and assistance to displaced civilians hiding along the Thai-Burma border. Each borderline mobile OPD clinic was staffed by three to five experienced BPHWT medics and supplied with the medicines and equipment needed for the Displaced Mother and Children 5 provision of healthcare to the displaced civilians. On the Thai side of the border, BPHWT has worked as part of the community based Emergency Relief Team (ERT) providing assistance to thousands of newly displaced civilians in unofficial or hiding sites. BPHWT health workers worked with the Mae Tao Clinic and Burma Medical Association as part of the health team, providing medical assistance to civilians in hiding along the Thai-Burma border, particularly to those more vulnerable such as pregnant women, children and the elderly
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Back Pack Health Worker Team ( BPHWT)
    Format/size: pdf (1.8MB - OBL version; 2.6MB - original)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.backpackteam.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/07/BPHWT%202010%20Annual%20report%20final%20upd...
    Date of entry/update: 05 September 2011


    Title: Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Health - BPHWT 10-year report - A decade of providing primary health care in Burma's displaced and vulnerable communities
    Date of publication: January 2011
    Description/subject: Preface: "Ten years ago, health workers from the Mon, Karen, and Karenni States in Burma came together as the Back Pack Health Worker Team (BPHWT) in partnership with the Mae Tao Clinic in Mae Sot, Thailand. The need for mobile healthcare services grew out of increasing military attacks against civilians in eastern Burma in the late 1990s, coupled with a lack of local, official healthcare. These circumstances prevented a large proportion of the population from receiving basic primary and preventative healthcare services. Since 1998, BPHWT has stayed true to its founding mission: to equip internally displaced persons with enough knowledge and skills that they are able to address the health problems of their own communities and work towards the development of a sustainable health infrastructure. The Back Pack Health Worker Team established key principles that have guided our work since the inception of the organization: to provide healthcare services to all, regardless of ethnic group, age, gender, religion, or political affiliation; to focus on communities where access to primary and preventive healthcare services is severely limited; to collaborate with local organizations and communities; to improve health through a multi-sectorial development and integration approach; and, to foster inter-ethnic unity and trust, thereby promoting democracy in Burma. Over the past ten years, BPHWT has expanded from 32 teams serving 64,000 people in the eastern border region of Burma to 80 teams serving over 187,000 people in eastern and western Burma. Over time, the scope of BPHWT’s services and programs has expanded as well. BPHWT has trained more than 1,300 multi-ethnic health workers who are currently living and working in their communities in Burma, providing primary and preventive healthcare services and enabling communities to address and prevent health problems. As BPHWT has grown, so has our reputation, and we have gained support and assistance from an expanding base of local and international health and education professionals and donors. As BPHWT looks towards the next ten years, we will continue to focus on strengthening and expanding our community-based primary healthcare system in Burma. Whether the future brings continued conflict or peace and democracy. BPHWT remains committed to our community-based approach, aimed at empowering local populations and bringing ethnic groups together in the name of improving health for all."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Back Pack Health Worker Team
    Format/size: pdf (2.8MB - OBL vertion; 3.7MB - original)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.backpackteam.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/01/bp%20report%20online.pdf
    Date of entry/update: 05 September 2011


    Title: Diagnosis: Critical – Health And Human Rights in Eastern Burma
    Date of publication: 19 October 2010
    Description/subject: Executive Summary: "This report reveals that the health of populations in conflict-affected areas of eastern Burma, particularly women and children, is amongst the worst in the world, a result of official disinvestment in health, protracted conflict and the abuse of civilians..."Diagnosis: Critical" demonstrates that a vast area of eastern Burma remains in a chronic health emergency, a continuing legacy of longstanding official disinvestment in health, coupled with protracted civil war and the abuse of civilians. This has left ethnic rural populations in the east with 41.2% of children under five acutely malnourished. 60.0% of deaths in children under the age of 5 are from preventable and treatable diseases, including acute respiratory infection, malaria, and diarrhea. These losses of life would be even greater if it were not for local community-based health organizations, which provide the only available preventive and curative care in these conflict-affected areas. The report summarizes the results of a large scale population-based health and human rights survey which covered 21 townships and 5,754 households in conflict-affected zones of eastern Burma. The survey was jointly conducted by the Burma Medical Association, National Health and Education Committee, Back Pack Health Worker Team and ethnic health organizations serving the Karen, Karenni, Mon, Shan, and Palaung communities. These areas have been burdened by decades of civil conflict and attendant human rights abuses against the indigenous populations. Eastern Burma demographics are characterized by high birth rates, high death rates and the significant absence of men under the age of 45, patterns more comparable to recent war zones such as Sierra Leone than to Burma’s national demographics. Health indicators for these communities, particularly for women and children, are worse than Burma’s official national figures, which are already amongst the worst in the world. Child mortality rates are nearly twice as high in eastern Burma and the maternal mortality ratio is triple the official national figure. While violence is endemic in these conflict zones, direct losses of life from violence account for only 2.3% of deaths. The indirect health impacts of the conflict are much graver, with preventable losses of life accounting for 59.1% of all deaths and malaria alone accounting for 24.7%. At the time of the survey, one in 14 women was infected with Pf malaria, amongst the highest rates of infection in the world. This reality casts serious doubts over official claims of progress towards reaching the country’s Millennium Development Goals related to the health of women, children, and infectious diseases, particularly malaria. The survey findings also reveal widespread human rights abuses against ethnic civilians. Among surveyed households, 30.6% had experienced human rights violations in the prior year, including forced labor, forced displacement, and the destruction and seizure of food. The frequency and pattern with which these abuses occur against indigenous peoples provide further evidence of the need for a Commission of Inquiry into Crimes against Humanity. The upcoming election will do little to alleviate the situation, as the military forces responsible for these abuses will continue to operate outside civilian control according to the new constitution. The findings also indicate that these abuses are linked to adverse population-level health outcomes, particularly for the most vulnerable members of the community—mothers and children. Survey results reveal that members of households who suffer from human rights violations have worse health outcomes, as summarized in the table above. Children in households that were internally displaced in the prior year were 3.3 times more likely to suffer from moderate or severe acute malnutrition. The odds of dying before age one was increased 2.5 times among infants from households in which at least one person was forced to provide labor. The ongoing widespread human rights abuses committed against ethnic civilians and the blockade of international humanitarian access to rural conflict-affected areas of eastern Burma by the ruling State Peace and Development Council (SPDC), mean that premature death and disability, particularly as a result of treatable and preventable diseases like malaria, diarrhea, and respiratory infections, will continue. This will not only further devastate the health of communities of eastern Burma but also poses a direct health security threat to Burma’s neighbors, especially Thailand, where the highest rates of malaria occur on the Burma border. Multi-drug resistant malaria, extensively drug-resistant tuberculosis and other infectious diseases are growing concerns. The spread of malaria resistant to artemisinin, the most important anti-malarial drug, would be a regional and global disaster. In the absence of state-supported health infrastructure, local community-based organizations are working to improve access to health services in their own communities. These programs currently have a target population of over 376,000 people in eastern Burma and in 2009 treated nearly 40,000 cases of malaria and have vastly increased access to key maternal and child health interventions. However, they continue to be constrained by a lack of resources and ongoing human rights abuses by the Burmese military regime against civilians. In order to fully address the urgent health needs of eastern Burma, the underlying abuses fueling the health crisis need to end."
    Language: Burmese, English, Thai
    Source/publisher: The Burma Medical Association, National Health and Education Committee, Back Pack Health Worker Team
    Format/size: pdf (OBL versions: 5.3MB - English; 4.4MB Thai; 3.5MB-Burmese) . Larger, original versions on BPHWT site
    Alternate URLs: http://www.burmalibrary.org/docs11/Diagnosis_critical(th)-red.pdf
    http://www.burmalibrary.org/docs11/Diagnosis_critical(bu)-red.pdf
    http://www.backpackteam.org/?page_id=208
    Date of entry/update: 05 September 2011


    Title: Living conditions for displaced villagers and ongoing abuses in Tenasserim Division
    Date of publication: 29 October 2009
    Description/subject: "Villagers in SPDC-controlled parts of Tenasserim Division, including 60 villages forced to move to government relocation sites in 1996, continue to face abuses including movement restrictions, forced labour and arbitrary demands for 'taxation' and other payments. In response, thousands of villagers continue to evade SPDC control in upland jungle areas. These villagers report that they are pursued by Burma Army patrols, which shoot them on sight, plant landmines and destroy paddy fields and food stores. This report primarily draws on information from September 2009. Because KHRG has not released a field report on the region since 2001, this report also includes quotes and photographs from research dating back to 2007..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Field Reports (KHRG #2009-F19)
    Format/size: pdf (359 KB)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2009/khrg09f19.html
    Date of entry/update: 11 November 2009


    Title: Population-based survey methods to quantify associations between human rights violations and health outcomes among internally displaced persons in eastern Burma
    Date of publication: September 2007
    Description/subject: Background: Case reports of human rights violations have focused on individuals’ experiences. Populationbased quantification of associations between rights indicators and health outcomes is rare and has not been documented in eastern Burma... Objective: We describe the association between mortality and morbidity and the household-level experience of human rights violations among internally displaced persons in eastern Burma... Methods: Mobile health workers in conflict zones of eastern Burma conducted 1834 retrospective household surveys in 2004. Workers recorded data on vital events, mid-upper arm circumference of young children, malaria parasitaemia status of respondents and household experience of various human rights violations during the previous 12 months... Results: Under-5 mortality was 218 (95% confidence interval 135 to 301) per 1000 live births. Almost onethird of households reported forced labour (32.6%). Forced displacement (8.9% of households) was associated with increased child mortality (odds ratio = 2.80), child malnutrition (odds ratio = 3.22) and landmine injury (odds ratio = 3.89). Theft or destruction of the food supply (reported by 25.2% of households) was associated with increased crude mortality (odds ratio = 1.58), malaria parasitaemia (odds ratio = 1.82), child malnutrition (odds ratio = 1.94) and landmine injury (odds ratio = 4.55). Multiple rights violations (14.4% of households) increased the risk of child (incidence rate ratio = 2.18) and crude (incidence rate ratio = 1.75) mortality and the odds of landmine injury (odds ratio = 19.8). Child mortality risk was increased more than fivefold (incidence rate ratio = 5.23) among families reporting three or more rights violations... Conclusions: Widespread human rights violations in conflict zones in eastern Burma are associated with significantly increased morbidity and mortality. Population-level associations can be quantified using standard epidemiological methods. This approach requires further validation and refinement elsewhere.
    Author/creator: Luke C Mullany, Adam K Richards, Catherine I Lee, Voravit Suwanvanichkij, Cynthia Maung, Mahn Mahn, Chris Beyrer and Thomas J Lee
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: J. Epidemiol. Community Health 2007;61;908-914
    Format/size: pdf (370K)
    Date of entry/update: 21 December 2008


    Title: Chronic Emergency - Health and Human Rights in Eastern Burma
    Date of publication: 07 September 2006
    Description/subject: This link leads to a document containing the Table of Contents of the report, with links to the English, Burmese and Thai versions... Executive Summary: "Disinvestment in health, coupled with widespread poverty, corruption, and the dearth of skilled personnel have resulted in the collapse of Burma’s health system. Today, Burma’s health indicators by official figures are among the worst in the region. However, information collected by the Back Pack Health Workers Team (BPHWT) on the eastern frontiers of the country, facing decades of civil war and widespread human rights abuses, indicate a far greater public health catastrophe in areas where official figures are not collected. In these eastern areas of Burma, standard public health indicators such as population pyramids, infant mortality rates, child mortality rates, and maternal mortality ratios more closely resemble other countries facing widespread humanitarian disasters, such as Sierra Leone, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Niger, Angola, and Cambodia shortly after the ouster of the Khmer Rouge. The most common cause of death continues to be malaria, with over 12% of the population at any given time infected with Plasmodium falciparum, the most dangerous form of malaria. One out of every twelve women in this area may lose her life around the time of childbirth, deaths that are largely preventable. Malnutrition is unacceptably common, with over 15% of children at any time with evidence of at least mild malnutrition, rates far higher than their counterparts who have fled to refugee camps in Thailand. Knowledge of sanitation and safe drinking water use remains low. Human rights violations are very common in this population. Within the year prior, almost a third of households had suffered from forced labor, almost 10% forced displacement, and a quarter had had their food confiscated or destroyed. Approximately one out of every fifty households had suffered violence at the hands of soldiers, and one out of 140 households had a member injured by a landmine within the prior year alone. There also appear to be some regional variations in the patterns of human rights abuses. Internally displaced persons (IDPs) living in areas most solidly controlled by the SPDC and its allies, such as Karenni State and Pa’an District, faced more forced labor while those living in more contested areas, such as Nyaunglebin and Toungoo Districts, faced more forced relocation. Most other areas fall in between these two extremes. However, such patterns should be interpreted with caution, given that the BPHW survey was not designed to or powered to reliably detect these differences. Using epidemiologic tools, several human rights abuses were found to be closely tied to adverse health outcomes. Families forced to flee within the preceding twelve months were 2.4 times more likely to have a child (under age 5) die than those who had not been forcibly displaced. Households forced to flee also were 3.1 times as likely to have malnourished children compared to those in more stable situations. Food destruction and theft were also very closely tied to several adverse health consequences. Families which had suffered this abuse in the preceding twelve months were almost 50% more likely to suffer a death in the household. These households also were 4.6 times as likely to have a member suffer from a landmine injury, and 1.7 times as likely to have an adult member suffer from malaria, both likely tied to the need to forage in the jungle. Children of these households were 4.4 times as likely to suffer from malnutrition compared to households whose food supply had not been compromised. For the most common abuse, forced labor, families that had suffered from this within the past year were 60% more likely to have a member suffer from diarrhea (within the two weeks prior to the survey), and more than twice as likely to have a member suffer from night blindness (a measure of vitamin A deficiency and thus malnutrition) compared to families free from this abuse. Not only are many abuses linked statistically from field observations to adverse health consequences, they are yet another obstacle to accessing health care services already out of reach for the majority of IDP populations in the eastern conflict zones of Burma. This is especially clear with women’s reproductive health: forced displacement within the past year was associated with a 6.1 fold lower use of contraception. Given the high fertility rate of this population and the high prevalence of conditions such as malaria and malnutrition, the lack of access often is fatal, as reflected by the high maternal mortality ratio—as many as one in 12 women will die from pregnancy-related complications. This report is the first to measure basic public health indicators and quantify the extent of human rights abuses at the population level amongst IDP communities living in the eastern conflict zones of Burma. These results indicate that the poor health status of these IDP communities is intricately and inexorably linked to the human rights context in which health outcomes are observed. Without addressing factors which drive ill health and excess morbidity and mortality in these populations, such as widespread human rights abuses and inability to access healthcare services, a long-term, sustainable improvement in the public health of these areas cannot occur..."
    Language: English, Burmese, Thai
    Source/publisher: Back Pack Health Worker Team
    Format/size: pdf (1.8MB, 2.2MB - English; 1,2MB - Burmese; 1.6MB - Thai)
    Alternate URLs: http://burmalibrary.org/docs3/ChronicEmergencyE-ocr.pdf
    http://www.burmalibrary.org/docs09/ChronicEmergency(English%20ver).pdf
    http://www.burmalibrary.org/docs09/ChronicEmergency(Burmese%20ver).pdf
    http://www.burmalibrary.org/docs09/ChronicEmergency(Thai%20ver).pdf
    http://www.ibiblio.org/obl/docs3/Chronic_Emergency-links.html
    Date of entry/update: 06 December 2010


  • Burma: Internal displacement/forced migration of several ethnic groups.

    Websites/Multiple Documents

    Title: Burma's Displaced People
    Date of publication: 22 April 2008
    Description/subject: The feature section on Burma includes 29 articles exploring the extent of the displacement crisis, factors affecting displaced people and the search for solutions. The issue also includes 19 articles on other aspects of forced migration..... Forced displacement of Burmese people, Inge Brees... Burma: in urgent need of change, Douglas Alexander... The international community's Responsibility to Protect, Kavita Shukla... . Landmines: reason for flight, obstacle to return, Yeshua Moser-Puangsuwan.... Forced relocation in Burma's former capital, Donald M Seekins... Under attack: a way of life, David Eubank... State of terror: women at risk, The Karen Women's Organisation.... Carving out humanitarian space, Jean-Francois Durieux and Sivanka Dhanapala.... Defining "forced migration" in Burma, Ashley South and Andrew Bosson... Humanitarian aid to IDPs in Burma: activities and debates, Ashley South... Supporting IDP resistance strategies, Poe Shan K Phan and Stephen Hull... Responses to eastern Burma's chronic emergency, The Thailand Burma Border Consortium... Reproductive health in Burma: a priority for action, John Bercow... A sense of home in exile, Sandra Dudley... Technology in the borderlands, Rachel Sharples... Neglect of refugee participation, Marie Theres Benner, Aree Muangsookjarouen Egbert Sondorp and Joy Townsend... Community-based camp management, Sally Thompson.... Access to justice and the rule of law, Joel Harding, Shane Scanlon, Sean Lees, Carson Beker and Ai Li Lim... Invisible in Thailand: documenting the need for protection, Margaret Green, Karen Jacobsen and Sandee Pyne ... Burmese asylum seekers in Thailand: still nowhere to turn, Chen Chen Lee and Isla Glaister... Rohingyas and refugee status in Bangladesh, Pia Prytz Phiri... Without refuge: Chin refugees in India and Malaysia, Amy Alexander.... Migration and trafficking: putting human rights into action, Nikolas Win Myint... Asia's new boat people, Chris Lewa.... Myanmar's forgotten people, Nyi Nyi Kyaw... Difficult to remain: the impact of mass resettlement, Susan Banki and Hazel Lang.... Karen voices on resettlement, The Karen Women's Organisation, with Sarah Fuller and Eileen Pittaway... Educational change in a protracted refugee context, Marc van der Stouwe and Su-Ann Oh... . To Sheffield with love, Patricia Hynes and Yin Mon Thu... Additional resources.
    Language: English, Burmese (Arabic, French and Spanish versions are in preparation)
    Source/publisher: Forced Migration Review No. 30
    Format/size: pdf (English, 3.2MB, Burmese, 2.61MB))
    Alternate URLs: http://www.fmreview.org/FMRpdfs/FMR30Burmese/FMR30Burmese.pdf

    http://www.fmreview.org/FMRpdfs/FMR30/contents.pdf (download individual articles)
    Date of entry/update: 22 April 2008


    Title: Ashley South: Publications on Burma
    Description/subject: List of published books and links to more than 20 online documents, mostly on the Mon, the Karen and internal displacement in Burma/Myanmar ....."Ashley South is an independent writer and consultant, specialising in humanitarian and political issues in Burma/Myanmar and Southeast Asia."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Ashley South
    Format/size: html, pdf
    Date of entry/update: 24 January 2009


    Title: Brookings Institution
    Description/subject: Some docs on IDPs in Burma
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Free Burma Rangers
    Description/subject: "... The Free Burma Rangers is an organization dedicated to freedom for the people of Burma. "De Oppresso Liber" is the motto of the Free Burma Rangers and we are dedicated in faith to the establishment of liberty, justice, equal rights and peace for all the people of Burma. The Free Burma Rangers support the restoration of democracy, ethnic rights and the implementation of the International Declaration of Human Rights in Burma. We stand with those who desire a nation where God's gifts of life, liberty, justice, pursuit of happiness and peace are ensured for all... MISSION: The mission of the Free Burma Rangers is to bring help, hope and love to the oppressed people of Burma. Its mission is also to help strengthen civil society, inspire and develop leadership that serves the people and act as a voice for the oppressed... ACTIONS: The Free Burma Rangers (FBR), conduct relief, advocacy, leadership development and unity missions among the people of Burma... Relief: ..."...FBR has issued some of the best documented reports on internal displacement/forced migration
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Free Burma Rangers
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 21 May 2004


    Title: Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre (IDMC) - Myanmar page
    Description/subject: Highly recommended. Well-organised site. In "list of sources used" are most of the main reports from 1995 bearing on IDPs (though the reports from 1995 to 1997 are missing - temporarily, one hopes) and more Burma pages updated June 2001. Go to the home page for links on IDPs, including the Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement.
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: IDMC
    Format/size: html
    Alternate URLs: http://www.internal-displacement.org (Homepage)
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Description/subject: The largest body of high-quality reports on the civil war in Burma, especially focussed on the civilian victims.
    Language: English, Karen
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: html, pdf
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/reports/karenlanguage/index.php
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Refugees International Burma page
    Description/subject: One major report, several shorter articles. " The repressive government of Burma has caused hundreds of thousands of people, mainly members of minority ethnic groups, to flee to Thailand, Bangladesh and other countries in search of safety."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Refugees International
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 29 November 2010


    Title: Refworld UNHCR
    Description/subject: A Search engine. UNHCR Documentation Centre's website. Lots of refugee and other documents.
    Date of entry/update: 29 November 2010


    Title: ReliefWeb's Myanmar page
    Description/subject: Reports from various NGOs, think-tanks and UN agencies
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA)
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 03 July 2012


    Title: TBC (formerly TBBC) Map Room
    Description/subject: Maps of internal displacement from 1996...The maps contain locations of such features as: Tatmadaw Regional Commands; S.E. Burma-Education-Basic; S.E. Burma-Health-Basic; S.E. Burma-Livelihoods-Basic; Poverty Incidence; Contested Areas in South East Myanmar; Development Projects in South East Myanmar; Internally Displaced Persons in South East Myanmar ; Tatmadaw outposts; Tatmadaw Military OPS Commands; BGF/Militia HQs; Tatmadaw Battalion Headquarters; BGF (Border Guard Force)/Militia Outpost; Displaced Villages; IDP Camps; Refugee Camps; Resumed Armed Resistance (SSA-N) Renewed Ceasefire Areas (UWSA, NDAA); International Boundaries; Rivers; Roads; cities; villages; State/Region Boundaries; Protracted Armed Resistance (SSA-S, PNLO); Development Projects Associated with Human Rights Abuses (Mines; Dams; Logging; Road Construction; Railroad Construction)
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: The Border Consortium (TBC)- formerly Thailand Burma Border Consortium (TBBC)
    Format/size: html, JPEG
    Alternate URLs: http://www.tbbc.org/idps/maproom.htm
    Date of entry/update: 17 November 2009


    Title: TBC documents on internal displacement in Burma
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: The Border Consortium
    Format/size: pdf
    Date of entry/update: 25 October 2008


    Title: United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR)
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: US Committee for Refugees
    Description/subject: Some reports and articles on Burma
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: US Committee for Refugees (USCR)
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Individual Documents

    Title: Humanitarian Bulletin Myanmar Issue 9| 1 – 31 October 2014
    Date of publication: 31 October 2014
    Description/subject: Repairing IDP shelters in Rakhine and Kachin...Citizenship verification exercise in Myebon...Displaced people in Meiktila need assistance for the winter...School children at risk of food ration cuts
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: UNOCHA
    Format/size: pdf (491K)
    Date of entry/update: 02 December 2014


    Title: Myanmar: comprehensive solutions needed for recent and long-term IDPs alike
    Date of publication: 01 July 2014
    Description/subject: Executive summary: "IDMC estimates that there are up to 642,600 internally displaced people (IDPs) in Myanmar, forced to flee their homes by armed conflict and inter-communal violence. The figure includes up to 400,000 people living in protracted displacement as a result of conflict in the south-east of the country – in southern Shan, Kayah, Kayin and Mon states and Bago and Tanintharyi regions - and 98,000 displaced by conflict in Kachin and northern Shan states since 2011. It also includes around 140,000 people displaced by inter-communal violence in Rakhine state since 2012, and more than 5,000 who fled their homes in Mandalay region in 2013. Disasters brought on by natural hazards and forced evictions linked to land grabs and the exploitation of natural resources have caused further displacement, including in areas where people have already fled conflict and violence. Landmines and unexploded ordnance constitute a significant obstacle to IDPs’ return in Kachin, northern Shan and the south-east. Internally displaced women and girls in Kachin and northern Shan face the threat of sexual violence. Muslim IDPs in Rakhine are confined to camps, where they have little or no access to health care, education or livelihoods, and shelters are in need of maintenance in Rakhine, Kachin and northern Shan. In the south-east, on the other hand, many IDPs are thought to be well on their way to achieving durable solutions through return or local integration, but estimating their number and gauging their outstanding needs is a challenge. Myanmar has no policy or legislation on internal displacement, and the government’s response has varied from region to region. Following the signing of ceasefire agreements, IDPs in the south-east should be better consulted and should be enabled to participate more in peace negotiations to ensure that their needs and aspirations in terms of durable solutions are addressed. UN mechanisms such as clusters and sectors coordinate the international response in Rakhine, Kachin and northern Shan, but generally humanitarian access is difficult in Rakhine, and in areas of Kachin and northern Shan not under government control."
    Author/creator: Anne-Kathrin Glatz
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre (IDMC)
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 08 July 2014


    Title: Ceasefires and Durable Solutions in Myanmar: a lessons learned review.....Commentary: IDPs and refugees in the current Myanmar peace process
    Date of publication: March 2014
    Description/subject: "Over six decades of ethnic conflict in Myanmar have generated displacement crises just as long. At the time of writing there are an estimated 640,747 internally displaced persons (IDPs) in Myanmar, and 415,373 refugees originating from the country.However, these figures are not fully indicative of levels of forced migration, as obtaining reliable data for IDPs remains difficult, while millions of regular and irregular migrants have also left the country, often fleeing similar conditions to those faced by documented refugees and IDPs. Since a new government came into power in 2011, it has managed to secure fresh ceasefire agreements with the majority of the country’s ethnonationalist armed groups (EAGs), potentially inching one step closer to a lasting solution for the country’s hundreds of thousands of refugees and IDPs. As the possibility for voluntary return and resettlement of displaced people opens up, there is a lot to learn from a look back at past ceasefire periods in Myanmar where movements of such populations have taken place. Focusing on the cases of the Kachin Independence Organisation (KIO) ceasefire in 1994, and the New Mon State Party (NMSP) ceasefire in 1995, which had very different impacts on the displaced populations affected, this paper aims to provide lessons for the current transition..." Jolliffe)....."This commentary reflects on some key findings emerging from Kim Jolliffe’s paper on lessons learned from previous ceasefire agreements in Myanmar, and examines how issues relating to refugees and internally displaced persons (IDPs) have been addressed in the current ceasefires and emerging peace process in Myanmar. The main focus of both papers are the Kachin situation (past and present), a case study of historic forced migration and attempted solutions in Mon areas, and the current situation in Karen areas. Comprehensive treatment of these issues would have to take into account (inter alia) the contexts in western Myanmar, and Shan and Karenni/Kayah areas..." (South)
    Author/creator: Kim Jolliffe (paper); Ashley South (Commentary)
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: United Nations - Office of the High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR)
    Format/size: pdf (915K-reduced version; 1.18MB-original)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.unhcr.org/cgi-bin/texis/vtx/home/opendocPDFViewer.html?docid=533927c39&query=%22New%20is...
    Date of entry/update: 13 October 2014


    Title: Humanitarian Bulletin - Myanmar Issue: November 2012
    Date of publication: November 2012
    Description/subject: Dire humanitarian needs P.1... Access constraints P.2... Funding requirements P.3... Sector needs and responses P.4..... HIGHLIGHTS The Government reports that the total estimated number of IDPs in Rakhine reached 115,000 people, including over 36,000 newly displaced in late October. Up to 75,000 people are estimated to have been displaced by insecurity in Kachin and northern Shan States which started in June 2011. The Government indicates that at least 17 people were killed and 114 injured due to an earthquake in upper Myanmar.
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA) with humanitarian partners
    Format/size: pdf (442K)
    Date of entry/update: 05 December 2012


    Title: Changing Realities, Poverty and Displacement in South East Burma/Myanmar - 2012 Survey (TBC)
    Date of publication: 31 October 2012
    Description/subject: "A significant decrease in forced displacement has been documented by community‐based organisations in South East Myanmar after a series of ceasefire agreements were negotiated earlier this year. While armed conflict continues in Kachin State and communal violence rages in Rakhine State, field surveys indicate that that there has been a substantial decrease in hostilities affecting Karen, Karenni, Shan and Mon communities. In its annual survey of displacement and poverty released today, the Thailand Burma Border Consortium (TBBC) estimates that 10,000 people were forced from their homes during the past year in comparison to an average of 75,000 people displaced every year during the previous decade. While there remain at least 400,000 internally displaced persons in rural areas of South East Myanmar, the tentative return of 37,000 civilians to their villages or surrounding areas reflects hope for an end to displacement. After supporting refugees and internally displaced persons for nearly three decades, TBBC’s Executive Director Jack Dunford is optimistic about the possibility of forging a sustainable solution but conscious that there are many obstacles still to come. “The challenge of transforming preliminary ceasefire agreements into a substantive peace process is immense, but this is the best chance we have ever had to create the conditions necessary to support voluntary and dignified return in safety”, said Mr Dunford. Poverty assessments conducted by TBBC’s community‐based partners with over 4,000 households across 21 townships provide a sobering reminder about the impact of protracted conflict on civilian livelihoods. The findings suggest that 59% of households in rural communities of South East Myanmar are impoverished, with the indicators particularly severe in northern Karen areas where there have been allegations of widespread and systematic human rights abuse. The Special Rapporteur for Human Rights in Myanmar reported to the United Nations General Assembly last month that truth, justice and accountability are integral to the process of securing peace and national reconciliation. Mr Dunford commented that “after all the violence and abuse, inclusive planning processes can help to rebuild trust by ensuring that the voices of those most affected are heard and that civil society representatives are involved at all stages”." (TBC Press Release, 31 October 2012)..... 9 documents: English full report (Zip-PDF: 22.5Mb); Burmese brochure (PDF: 8.25Mb); English brochure (PDF: 0.9Mb); English Exec Summ. (PDF: 270Kb); English-Chapter 1 (PDF: 800Kb); English-Chapter 2 (PDF: 7.9Mb); English-Chapter 3 (PDF: 9.7Mb); English-Chapter 4 (PDF: 5.6Mb); English-Appendices (PDF: 5.9Mb).....
    Language: English, Burmese
    Source/publisher: The Border Consortium - TBC (formerly Thailand Burma Border Consortium - TBBC )
    Format/size: html, pdf
    Alternate URLs: http://www.tbbc.org/idps/report-2012-idp-en-press-release.pdf (press release)
    http://www.burmalibrary.org/docs14/report-2012-idp-full-en-op-red.pdf (slightly reduced version of the full report)
    Date of entry/update: 02 November 2012


    Title: Displacement and Poverty in South East Burma/Myanmar - 2011 Survey - TBBC (English)
    Date of publication: October 2011
    Description/subject: EXECUTIVE SUMMARY (extract): Poverty alleviation has been recognised by the new government as a strategic priority for human development. While official figures estimate that a quarter of the nation live in poverty, this survey suggests that almost two thirds of households in rural areas of South East Burma/Myanmar are unable to meet their basic needs. Impoverishment is particularly severe in the conflict-affected townships of Kyaukgyi and Shwegyin in Pegu/Bago Region and Thandaung in Karen/Kayin State. Comparative analysis with household surveys conducted by the World Food Program suggest that that standards of living in rural areas of the South East are similar to conditions in Northern Rakhine State and far worse than those those reported from the central Dry Zone. This report seeks to increase awareness about the scale of poverty and displacement in rural areas of South East Burma/Myanmar at a critical juncture in the nation’s history...".....With Field Assessments and Situation Updates by: Committee for Internally Displaced Karen People; Karen Offi ce of Relief and Development; Karenni Social Welfare and Development Centre; Mon Relief and Development Committee; Shan Relief and Development Committee...
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Thailand Burma Border Consortium (TBBC)
    Format/size: pdf (5.8MB-low resolution; 8.9MB - higher resolution); Zip file - TBBC site - 8.8MB)
    Alternate URLs: Higher resolution: http://www.tbbc.org/resources/resources.htm#idps
    http://www.burmalibrary.org/docs12/TBBC-IDP_report-2011(en)-red.pdf
    Date of entry/update: 26 October 2011


    Title: MYANMAR: Displacement continues in context of armed conflicts (Overview)
    Date of publication: 19 July 2011
    Description/subject: "In November 2010 the first national elections since 1990 were held in Myanmar. While the party set up by the previous government and the armed forces retain most legislative and executive power, the elections may nevertheless have opened up a window of opportunity for greater civilian governance and power-sharing. At the same time, recent fighting between opposition non-state armed groups (NSAGs) and government forces in Kayin/Karen, Kachin, and Shan States, which displaced many within eastern Myanmar and into Thailand and China, is a sign that ethnic tensions remain serious and peace elusive. Since April 2009, armed conflict between the armed forces and NSAGs has intensified, as several NSAGs that had concluded a ceasefire with the government in the 1990s refused to obey government orders to transform into army-led border guard forces. Displacement in the context of armed conflict is not systematically monitored by any independent organisation inside the country. Most available information on displacement comes from organisations based on the Thai side of the Thailand-Myanmar border. Limited access to affected areas and lack of independent monitoring make it virtually impossible to verify their reports of the numbers and situations of internally displaced people (IDPs). Although the conflicts in other areas of Myanmar have probably also led to displacement, the only region for which estimates have been available was the southeast, where more than 400,000 people were believed to be living in internal displacement in 2010. More than 70,000 among them were estimated to be newly displaced. People displaced due to conflict in Myanmar lack access to food, clean water, health care, education and livelihoods. Their security is threatened by ongoing fighting, including where conflict parties reportedly target civilians directly. Although the limited access of humanitarians to most conflict-affected areas has hampered the provision of assistance and protection, the Government of Myanmar took a positive step in 2010 by concluding an agreement with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) for the provision of assistance to conflict-affected communities."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre (IDMC)
    Format/size: pdf (249K)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.burmalibrary.org/docs11/IDMC-Myanmar_Overview_July2011.pdf
    Date of entry/update: 09 September 2011


    Title: Dilemmas of Burma in transition
    Date of publication: March 2011
    Description/subject: "Until a government of Burma is able to accept the role of non-state armed groups as providers for civilian populations and affords them legitimacy within a legal framework, sustained conflict and mass displacement remain inevitable. Throughout decades of brutal conflict, which have seen thousands of villages destroyed and millions of people displaced, Burma’s ruling regime has made no effort to provide support for affected civilians. As a result, Burma’s ethnic non-state armed groups (NSAGs) – thought to hold territory covering a quarter of the country’s landmass – play a crucial role as protectors and providers of humanitarian aid. The approach to governance taken by different NSAGs varies greatly, as does the level of willing support given to them by their respective populations. In these traditional cultures, hierarchical leadership structures have evolved over time, often based largely on loyalty to those who provide support and protection. Leaders linked to or part of NSAGs are now firmly established as being responsible for the governance of millions of people in Burma. This situation poses a threat to the state which, in turn, has responded with brute force, perpetuating the cycle of conflict and protracted displacement..."
    Author/creator: Kim Jolliffe
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: "Forced Migration Review" No. 37
    Format/size: html, pdf (171K)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.fmreview.org/non-state/Jolliffe.html
    Date of entry/update: 13 October 2014


    Title: PROTRACTED DISPLACEMENT AND CHRONIC POVERTY IN EASTERN BURMA / MYANMAR
    Date of publication: 28 October 2010
    Description/subject: EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: "Regardless of the outcomes in Burma’s first elections for twenty years, the incoming government and international community cannot afford to ignore the deteriorating socio-economic conditions that plague the country any longer. The urgency is particularly acute in eastern Burma where protracted armed conflict and restrictions on humanitarian access have exacerbated the legacy of chronic poverty. The Thailand Burma Border Consortium (TBBC) has been collaborating with ethnic community-based organisations to document conditions in eastern Burma since 2002. This year, apart from updating information about displacement across six states and divisions, poverty assessments were also conducted in six townships. The poverty assessment was developed in consultation with humanitarian agencies based in Rangoon/Yangon as a contribution towards developing a credible, nation-wide database of indicators for household vulnerability. Government statistics disguise the extent of suffering and suggest relatively low levels of poverty in eastern Burma. This is because surveys are not allowed in some areas and pockets of extreme vulnerability are not taken into account when data is only disaggregated to the State or Division level. However, the indicators for vulnerability in eastern Burma documented in this report are comparable to the worst findings that international agencies have reported anywhere in Burma. Impoverishment is particularly severe in the rural areas of Kyaukgyi Township where half of the sample population reported displacement, forced labour and restrictions on movement had caused shocks to livelihoods during the previous six months. Analysis of the demographic structure in eastern Burma reveals high birth and child mortality rates as well as low life expectancy. There is a high degree of dependency on a relatively small working age population, and almost half of the population surveyed has no proof of citizenship. These characteristics are more comparable to the vulnerability experienced in northern Rakhine State than national averages. Offi cial fi gures suggest that poverty rates in Kachin State and Magway Division are amongst the worst in the nation. However, this survey indicates that basic living conditions, such as access to safe drinking water and improved sanitation facilities, are generally worse in eastern Burma. The lack of durable shelter resulting from protracted conflict in eastern Burma resembles conditions in the Irrawaddy Delta a year after Cyclone Nargis wreaked havoc. Government statistics claim the average farming household owns 6 acres of land, but this survey found 64% of rural households have access to less than two acres of land and only 13% have access to irrigated fields. These seemingly contradictory fi gures reflect large inequalities with regards to land tenure in Burma. The labour intensive nature of agriculture is indicated by over 80% of farmers lacking farm machinery and being dependent on simple tools. Official data suggests that northern Shan State suffers from food insecurity more than most regions in Burma, but this survey fi nds the situation in south eastern Burma is comparable. Three quarters of the households in south eastern Burma had experienced food shortages during the month prior to being surveyed, and a similar proportion were preparing for a gap in rice supply of at least three months prior to the next harvest. Food consumption analysis identifi es that 60% of households surveyed have an inadequate diet, while acute malnutrition rates amongst children suggest a serious public health problem. While numerous indicators reflect severe vulnerabilities in eastern Burma, there is also evidence that subsistence livelihoods are highly resilient. The main source of staple food for three quarters of households is either their own rice crop or social networks, while access to cash income is more limited than elsewhere in the country. The low dependence on trade and high degrees of self reliance are also reflected by a relatively low proportion of household expenditures on food. This would generally be considered an indicator for lower levels of poverty, but comparisons are distorted because of increased restrictions on movement and reduced access to markets in the conflict-affected areas of eastern Burma. Impoverishment in eastern Burma is a bi-product of militarisation and a key factor contributing to displacement. During the past year, SPDC attempts to pressure ethnic ceasefi re groups to transform into Border Guard Forces have increased insecurity in areas which were relatively stable. The main ceasefi re parties have resisted the pressure and reiterated calls for a review of the 2008 Constitution and political dialogue to promote national reconciliation. In response, the Burmese Army has forcibly conscripted and extorted villagers to form ethnic militia units to act as proxy forces in case ceasefire agreements collapse. This year’s survey estimates at least 73,000 people were forced to leave their homes in eastern Burma between August 2009 and July 2010. The highest rates of displacement were reported in northern Karen areas, where over 26,000 villagers were forced from their homes by Burmese Army artillery attacks against civilians and by forced eviction orders. More than 8,000 villagers in southern Mon areas also fl ed from their homes as a result of instability and conflict induced by the Border Guard Force conversion orders and by forced relocations. TBBC’s partner agencies have documented the destruction, forced relocation or abandonment of more than 3,600 civilian settlements in eastern Burma since 1996, including 113 villages and hiding sites during the past year. Coercive practices by armed forces have also undermined livelihoods and contributed to at least 446,000 people being internally displaced in the rural areas of eastern Burma at the end of 2010. As this conservative estimate only covers 37 townships and discounts urban areas, it is likely that well over half a million internally displaced persons remain in eastern Burma. Military appointees and proxy party representatives are expected to control government after the elections, and there is no indication that political indifference to human suffering will change in the immediate future. The political challenge remains to press and engage with the national authorities for a genuine process of national reconciliation and the rights-based rule of law. However, there is an urgent need to scale up poverty alleviation and humanitarian relief efforts and there are capacities within Rangoon and border-based aid agencies to absorb additional funding immediately. The humanitarian and development challenge is to ensure that aid funding and programming are based on needs and vulnerabilities rather than political agendas."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Thailand Burma Border Consortium (TBBC)
    Format/size: pdf (8MB); zip (7.1MB)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.tbbc.org/idps/report-2010-idp-en.zip
    http://www.tbbc.org/announcements/2010-10-28-media-release-idp-survey.pdf (press release)
    Date of entry/update: 28 October 2010


    Title: Displaced Childhoods
    Date of publication: April 2010
    Description/subject: Preface: "On 17 January 2010, Burma Army Light Infantry Battalion (LIB) number 367 initiated a fresh round of attacks on several villages in Karen State’s Nyaunglebin District in eastern Burma, killing three villagers, burning down houses, and committing atrocities against civilians. Over a two-day period, the attacks forcibly displaced over 1,000 villagers, including hundreds of children. These children are now living in uncertain conditions, hiding from further military attacks with little more than the clothes on their backs. They are at extreme risk of continued human rights violations, malnourishment, and serious health problems. Such attacks are common in military-ruled Burma. A generation of the country’s children have been scarred by death, destruction, loss, and neglect at the hands of Burma’s military. For over four decades, Burma’s military government has forced children from their homes and villages, subjected them to extreme human rights violations, and largely left them to fend for their survival in displacement settings without access to basic provisions or humanitarian services. Since 2002, Free Burma Rangers (FBR) has independently documented over 180 incidents of displacement, and for the last 14 years both Partners and FBR have provided lifesaving humanitarian service to thousands more. From 2002 to the end of 2009, more than 580,000 civilians, including over 190,000 children, have been forcibly displaced from their homes in Eastern Burma alone. An estimated one to three million people live as internally displaced persons (IDPs) throughout Burma. As many as 330,000 to 990,000 of the displaced are children..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Free Burma Rangers. Partners Relief & Development
    Format/size: pdf (2MB)
    Date of entry/update: 08 April 2010


    Title: EASTERN BURMA: 118,800 DISPLACED IN 18 MONTHS
    Date of publication: 03 February 2010
    Description/subject: * In the 18 months spanning July 2008-December 2009, SPDC military operations displaced at least 118,800 (43,800 refugees and 75,000 internally displaced persons) people in Eastern Burma alone. * Of this figure, at least 16,800 were victims of crimes against humanity and war crimes as defined under international law. * Much of the displacement was the result of the junta's program to secure military and political control over ethnic areas in the lead-up to the SPDC's planned elections this year. * Displacement is expected to increase as the regime intensifies pressure on ethnic groups resisting the elections that are predicated on a constitution designed to legitimize the military regime's political and economic subjugation of ethnic nationalities. * At the start of 2010, SPDC Army crimes against humanity and war crimes in Eastern Burma pushed 2,000 Karen into the jungles.
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: ALTSEAN-Burma
    Format/size: pdf (119K)
    Date of entry/update: 04 February 2010


    Title: MYANMAR: Increasing displacement as fighting resumes in the east A profile of the internal displacement situation
    Date of publication: 29 January 2010
    Description/subject: "...Displacement as a result of armed conflict and human rights violations continues in Myanmar. Between August 2008 and July 2009, an estimated 75,000 people from ethnic minority communities in eastern Myanmar were forced to flee their homes. In several areas it is impossible to estimate the number of internally displaced people (IDPs). In October 2009, it was estimated there were at least 470,000 IDPs in rural areas of eastern Myanmar. Here, conflict between the Tatmadaw (the Myanmar Armed Forces) and ethnic insurgent groups has intensified since June 2009, as a result of government plans to transform armed opposition groups which have agreed ceasefires into Tatmadaw-commanded Border Guard Forces in the run-up to planned 2010 elections. During 2009, displacement was most prevalent in the Shan and Kayin/Karen States, where the IDP populations were reportedly 135,000 and 125,000 respectively. In several parts of Myanmar, coercive measures such as forced labour and land confiscation, often part of state-sponsored development initiatives, have also caused displacement. IDPs living in conflict-affected areas of Myanmar are vulnerable and in need of security, food, shelter, health and education. With the exception of the Ayerarwady/Irrawaddy delta, devastated by Cyclone Nargis in May 2008, humanitarian access remains tightly controlled. International awareness of the nature and extent of conflict-induced displacement remains limited..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre (IDMC)
    Format/size: pdf (1.2MB, full text; 541K -overview)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.internal-displacement.org/8025708F004BE3B1/%28httpInfoFiles%29/CA6833A6901BDE21C12576BA004A2DE8/$file/Myanmar_Overview_Jan10.pdf
    Date of entry/update: 06 December 2010


    Title: Burma Human Rights Yearbook 2008 - Chapter 19: Internal Displacement and Forced Relocation
    Date of publication: 23 November 2009
    Description/subject: "Despite intense international focus on the human rights situation in Burma in 2008, forced displacement, as a result of conflict and human rights violations, was ongoing in the country. Throughout 2008, the State Peace and Development Council (SPDC) military regime remained the main perpetrator in the majority of violations against civilians, particularly those against ethnic minority groups. Further, the SPDC remained unwilling to fulfil their obligations in relation to internally displaced persons (IDPs), flatly rejecting the assertion of the presence of a large number of IDPs in Burma. As a result, during 2008, the junta’s restrictions on humanitarian access continued to obstruct aid workers in Burma, particularly in conflict-affected areas....In addition to the more traditional conflict-induced and development-induced displacement discussed above, internal displacement in Burma is also caused by a combination of coercive and economic factors which lead to the impoverishment and forced migration of local populations. Such practices and policies employed by the SPDC and its allied ceasefire armies include land confiscation, the use of forced labour, arbitrary taxation and extortion, theft and looting, enforced agricultural quotas and procurement policies and restrictions on the freedom of movement.25 As such, the systematic and widespread violation of human rights is one of the leading causes of displacement in Burma today. While many reports published throughout 2008 continued to refer to “civilians fleeing fighting”, the reality remains that conflict in Burma is typically of a low intensity and what civilians flee from more often than not are the human rights abuses that invariably accompany militarization and not overt fighting as is often implied. This is especially prevalent in areas of ethnic armed conflict. In such contexts, it is misleading to use the term “fighting”, as this implies that the villagers are fleeing from counter-insurgency measures used by SPDC army units against armed resistance groups and that the conflict has spilled over unintentionally into civilian villages where the villagers are easily labelled as “collateral damage”. Such assumptions could not be any further from the truth. For the most part, the only real “fighting” that ever takes place is when SPDC army columns attack undefended civilian villages and opposition forces attempt to intervene to give the villagers a chance to escape. In all such attacks, the villagers cannot be considered “collateral damage”, but rather the intended targets of them. Actual cases of SPDC army forces seeking out and engaging the resistance are rare..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Human Rights Docmentation Unit (HRDU)
    Format/size: pdf (1.39MB)
    Date of entry/update: 06 December 2009


    Title: Protracted Displacement and Militarization in Eastern Burma- 2009 Survey -TBBC (English, Burmese, Thai)
    Date of publication: November 2009
    Description/subject: "The main threats to human security in eastern Burma are related to militarisation. Military patrols and landmines are the most significant and fastest growing threat to civilian safety and security, while forced labour and restrictions on movement are the most pervasive threats to livelihoods. Trend analysis suggests that the threats to both security and livelihoods have increased during the past five years. Over 3,500 villages and hiding sites in eastern Burma have been destroyed or forcibly relocated since 1996, including 120 communities between August 2008 and July 2009. The scale of displaced villages is comparable to the situation in Darfur and has been recognised as the strongest single indicator of crimes against humanity in eastern Burma. At least 75,000 people were forced to leave their homes during this past year, and more than half a million people remain internally displaced. The highest rates of recent displacement were reported in northern Karen areas and southern Shan State. Almost 60,000 Karen villagers are hiding in the mountains of Kyaukgyi, Thandaung and Papun Townships, and a third of these civilians fled from artillery attacks or the threat of Burmese Army patrols during the past year. Similarly, nearly 20,000 civilians from 30 Shan villages were forcibly relocated by the Burmese Army in retaliation for Shan State Army-South (SSA-S) operations in Laikha, Mong Kung and Keh Si Townships. Thailand’s National Security Council recently acknowledged it was preparing for another mass influx of refugees due to conflict in Burma’s border areas leading up to the proposed elections in 2010. Conflict has already intensified in Karen State with over 4,000 Karen refugees fleeing into Thailand during June. The increased instability is related to demands that ethnic ceasefire groups transform into Border Guard Forces under Burmese Army command. Such pressure has already resulted in the resumption of hostilities in the Kokang region which caused 37,000 civilians to flee into China..."
    Language: English, Burmese, Thai
    Source/publisher: Thailand Burma Border Consortium (TBBC)
    Format/size: pdf (5.6MB - English; 7.3MB - Burmese; 5.6MB - Thai))
    Alternate URLs: http://www.burmalibrary.org/docs09/TBBCidp_report-2009(bu).pdf
    http://www.burmalibrary.org/docs09/TBBCidp_report-2009(th).pdf
    http://www.tbbc.org/idps/report-2009-idp-english.zip
    Date of entry/update: 02 November 2009


    Title: A State of Fear
    Date of publication: October 2009
    Description/subject: Caught in the crossfire of Burma’s civil war, hundreds of thousands of Karen, Karenni, Mon and Shan are trapped in No Man’s Land... "At night, my mother and I boiled rice while my sister dried our wet clothes by the fire,” said Moo Kay Paw. “We were too scared to light a fire during the day in case the government troops saw it and came for us. “We survived for weeks only on boiled rice. At night, we slept rough on the ground with pieces of bamboo for pillows. I shared a single blanket with my four sisters to stay warm,” she said. a family waits for help before rushing across a Burmese military road in northern Karen State. (Photo: FBR) Four years ago, when Moo Kay Paw was 14, her village was burnt down by government soldiers and her father was shot before her eyes. In many ways, her story is typical of someone from a farming village in eastern Burma. Constantly on the move to avoid the war between the Tatmadaw—the Burmese military government’s forces—and the ethnic insurgents of the region, Moo Kay Paw’s family has lived in a state of fear since the 1980s..."
    Author/creator: Saw Yan Naing
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: "The Irrawaddy" Vol. 17, No. 7
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 27 February 2010


    Title: Patrols, movement restrictions and forced labour in Toungoo District
    Date of publication: 28 September 2009
    Description/subject: "This report documents the situation for villagers in Toungoo District, both in areas under SPDC control and in areas contested by the KNLA and home to villagers actively evading SDPC control. For villagers in the former, movement restrictions, forced labour and demands for material support continue unabated, and continue to undermine their attempts to address basic needs. Villagers in hiding, meanwhile, report that the threat of Burma Army patrols, though slightly reduced, remains sufficient to disrupt farming and undermine food security. This report includes incidents occurring from January to August 2009..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Field Reports (KHRG #2009-F16)
    Format/size: pdf (850 KB)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2009/khrg09f16.html
    Date of entry/update: 28 October 2009


    Title: MYANMAR: No end in sight for internal displacement crisis. A profile of the internal displacement situation
    Date of publication: 05 March 2009
    Description/subject: "Displacement as a result of conflict and human rights violations continued in Myanmar in 2008. An estimated 66,000 people from ethnic minority communities in eastern Myanmar were forced to become displaced in order to avoid the effects of armed conflict and human rights abuses. As of October 2008, there were at least 451,000 people reported to be internally displaced in the rural areas of eastern Myanmar. This is however a conservative figure, and there is no information available on figures for internally displaced people (IDPs) in several parts of the country. In 2008, the displacement crisis continued to be most acute in Kayin (Karen) State in the east of the country where an intense offensive by the Myanmar army against ethnic insurgent groups had been ongoing since late 2005. As of October 2008, there were reportedly over 100,000 IDPs in the state. New displacement was also reported in 2008 in western Myanmar’s Chin State as a result of human rights violations and severe food insecurity. People also continued to be displaced in some parts of the country due to a combination of coercive measures such as forced labour and land confiscation that left them with no choice but to migrate, often in the context of state-sponsored development initiatives. IDPs living in the areas of Myanmar still affected by armed conflict between the army and insurgent groups remained the most vulnerable, with their priority needs tending to be related to physical security, food, shelter, health and education. Humanitarian access to this population continued to be very restricted. An unprecedented level of access for humanitarian workers was permitted in response to Cyclone Nargis which struck the Ayeyarwady (Irrawaddy) Delta in May 2008, but government restrictions on humanitarian access continued elsewhere in Myanmar and frustrated efforts to reach conflict-affected IDPs. Additionally, the awareness of the international community of the nature and extent of conflict-displacement in Myanmar continued to be limited."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre
    Format/size: pdf (1.53MB)
    Date of entry/update: 06 March 2009


    Title: Internal Displacement and International Law in Eastern Burma
    Date of publication: October 2008
    Description/subject: EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: "Twenty years after the Burmese junta gunned down pro-democracy protesters, violations of human rights and humanitarian law in eastern Burma are more widespread and systematic than ever. Ten years after the Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement were submitted, the international response in eastern Burma remains largely ineffective in dealing with a predatory governing regime. The Thailand Burma Border Consortium (TBBC) has been collaborating with ethnic community-based organisations to document the characteristics of internal displacement in eastern Burma since 2002. During this period there has been increasing debate about whether violations of human rights and humanitarian law in eastern Burma constitute an international crime. So aside from updating information about the scale and distribution of internal displacement, this year's survey compiles abuses reported during 2008 in relation to the legal framework for crimes against humanity.Conflict-induced displacement remains most concentrated in the northern Karen areas, where armed skirmishes between the Burmese Army and the Karen National Union continued in the first six months of 2008. While the wet season was previously a time of respite from Burmese Army patrols, intensified troop deployments during the past couple of years mean that the occupation is now sustained all year. This has led to the displacement of 27,000 villagers in the four affected townships during the past year. The prevalence of military attacks targeting civilians has slightly decreased since the junta's offensive in 2006. However, the harassment of villagers perceived as sympathetic to the armed opposition is unrelenting. The four townships surrounding Laikha in southern Shan State are also of particular concern. Armed skirmishes and Burmese Army deployments have escalated in this area since a former battalion commander with the Shan State Army - South surrendered in 2006. The Burmese Army is attempting to assert its supremacy in the area by breaking communication links between the armed opposition to the south and ceasefire groups to the north. Over 13,000 civilians are estimated to have been displaced from their homes in this area during the past twelve months. TBBC has previously reported that more than 3,200 settlements were destroyed, forcibly relocated or otherwise abandoned in eastern Burma between 1996 and 2007. Such field reports have been corroborated by high resolution commercial satellite imagery of villages before and after the displacement occurred. During the past year, community organisations have documented the forced displacement of a further 142 villages and hiding sites. However, displacement is more commonly caused by coercive factors at the household level. The imposition of forced labour, extortion, land confiscation, agricultural production quotas, and restrictions on access to fields and markets has a devastating effect on household incomes and a destabilising impact on populations. During the past year, the prevalence of these factors has been exacerbated by hydro-electric projects in Shan and Karen States, mining projects in Shan and Karenni States and Pegu Division, the gas pipeline in Mon State as well as commercial agriculture and road construction in general.While the total number of internally displaced persons in eastern Burma is likely to be well over half a million people, at least 451,000 people have been estimated in the rural areas alone. The population includes approximately 224,000 people currently in the temporary settlements of ceasefire areas administered by ethnic nationalities. However, the most vulnerable group is an estimated 101,000 civilians who are hiding in areas most affected by military skirmishes, followed by approximately 126,000 villagers who have been forcibly evicted by the Burmese Army into designated relocation sites. An estimated 66,000 people were forced to leave their homes as a result of, or in order to avoid, the effects of armed conflict and human rights abuses during the past year alone. Despite concessions made in the Irrawaddy Delta after Cyclone Nargis, the junta's restrictions on humanitarian access continue to obstruct aid workers elsewhere in Burma, particularly in conflict-affected areas. The large scale of displacement and the obstruction of relief efforts are indicative of ongoing violations of human rights and humanitarian law in eastern Burma. International law recognises crimes against humanity as acts committed as part of a widespread or systematic attack against any civilian population. Attacks on civilians refer not only to military assaults but also to the multiple commission of acts such as murder, enslavement, forcible transfer of population, torture and rape when related to a State policy. This definition reflects customary international law binding on all states, including Burma. The evidence cited in this report appears to strengthen Amnesty International's recent assessment that the violations in eastern Burma meet the legal threshold to constitute crimes against humanity. Skeptics argue that raising allegations about crimes against humanity will merely frustrate the promotion of political dialogue. However, just as the provision of humanitarian assistance should not be dependent upon political reform, humanitarian protection and the administration of justice should not be sacrificed to expedite political dialogue. The reality is that the authorities have consistently refused to enter into a serious discussion of these abuses with a view to putting a stop to them. The threat of prosecution may actually increase the leverage of the diplomatic community and provide an incentive for the governing regime to end the climate of impunity. Given the impunity with which violations have been committed, and the Burmese junta's failure to implement recommendations formulated by relevant United Nations' bodies, the responsibility to protect shifts to the international community. The challenge remaining for the international community is to operationalise this responsibility in Burma and hold the junta to account."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Thailand Burma Border Consortium
    Format/size: pdf (10.33MB)
    Date of entry/update: 25 October 2008


    Title: Landmines: reason for flight, obstacle to return
    Date of publication: 22 April 2008
    Description/subject: "Burma/Myanmar has suffered from two decades of mine warfare by both the State Peace and Development Council and ethnic-based insurgents. There are no humanitarian demining programmes within the country. It is no surprise that those states in Burma/Myanmar with the most mine pollution are the highest IDP- and refugee-producing states. Antipersonnel mines planted by both government forces and ethnic armed groups injure and kill not only enemy combatants but also their own troops, civilians and animals. There is no systematic marking of mined areas. Mines are laid close to areas of civilian activity; many injuries occur within half a kilometre of village centres. Although combatants have repeatedly said that they give ‘verbal warnings’ to civilians living near areas which they mine, no civilian mine survivor interviewed by the International Campaign to Ban Landmines reported having had verbal warnings..."
    Author/creator: Yeshua Moser-Puangsuwan
    Language: English, Burmese
    Source/publisher: "Forced Migration Review" No. 30
    Format/size: pdf (English, 293K; Burmese, 175K)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.fmreview.org/FMRpdfs/FMR30Burmese/9.pdf
    Date of entry/update: 30 November 2008


    Title: Under attack: a way of life
    Date of publication: 22 April 2008
    Description/subject: Much of what is happening in the conflict zones of eastern Burma is difficult to capture with photos, video and reports. It is a slow and insidious strangulation of the population rather than an all-out effort to crush them...
    Author/creator: David Eubank
    Language: English, Burmese
    Source/publisher: "Forced Migration Review" No. 30
    Format/size: pdf (Burmese, 267K; English, 401K)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.fmreview.org/FMRpdfs/FMR30Burmese/10-11.pdf
    Date of entry/update: 30 November 2008


    Title: Displacement and Dispossession: Forced Migration and Land Rights in Burma
    Date of publication: 05 December 2007
    Description/subject: "According to COHRE's new report, 'Displacement and Dispossession: Forced Migration and Land Rights in Burma', land confiscation by Government forces is responsible for many serious housing, land and property (HLP) rights violations in Burma. These abuses occur during military counter-insurgency operations; to clear land for the construction of new army bases; to make way for infrastructure development projects; to facilitate natural resource extraction; and to cater for the vested interests of business. 'Displacement and Dispossession: Forced Migration and Land Rights in Burma' also reveals that control of land is a key strategy for the military regime, and a means of promoting the on-going expansion of the Burmese Army (Tatmadaw). In 1998, the SPDC issued a directive instructing Tatmadaw battalions to become self-sufficient in rice and other basic provisions. This prompted the Tatmadaw to 'live off the land' by appropriating resources (food, cash, labour, land) from the civilian population. This policy has exacerbated conflict and displacement across much of rural Burma. The Thai Burma Border Consortium (TBBC) and its partners estimate that during 2007, approximately 76,000 people have been newly displaced by armed conflict and associated human rights abuses. The majority of new incidents of forced migration and village destruction were concentrated in northeast Karen State and adjacent areas of Pegu Division. The total number of internally displaced persons (IDPs) in Eastern Burma in October 2007 was 503,000. These included 295,000 people in ceasefire zones, 99,000 IDPs 'in hiding' in the jungle and 109,000 in relocation sites. The estimates exclude hundreds of thousands of IDPs in other parts of Burma (especially Kachin and Shan States, and the west of the country, as well as in some parts of Karen State). Including these figures would bring the total to over a million internally displaced people. COHRE's Du Plessis said, "More than one million people have been dispossessed and are internally displaced in Burma -- not because of a natural disaster, but due to their own government's calculated and brutal actions. We have here a state monopoly which forcibly transfers property, income and assets, from rural, non-Burman ethnic nationalities to an elite, military Government. The HLP violations found in Burma today are the result of short-sighted and predatory policies that date back to the early years of Independence, and to the period of colonial rule. These problems can only be resolved through substantial and sustained change in Burma. Political transition should include improved access to a range of fundamental rights, as enshrined in international law and conventions -- including respect for HLP rights."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Coalition on Housing Rights and Evictions (COHRE)
    Format/size: pdf (3.21MB)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.cohre.org/news/documents/burma-displacement-and-dispossession-forced-migration-and-land-...
    Date of entry/update: 01 December 2010


    Title: Internal Displacement in Eastern Burma, 2007 Survey
    Date of publication: 19 October 2007
    Description/subject: The Thailand Burma Border Consortium (TBBC) has been collaborating with ethnic community-based organisations to document the characteristics of internal displacement in eastern Burma since 2002. This year's research updates estimates of the scale and distribution of internal displacement, and documents the impacts of militarization and state-sponsored development, based on quantitative surveys with key informants in 38 townships. Trends relating to vulnerability, coping strategies and efforts at promoting protection were assessed by utilizing a multi-stage cluster sampling method to select and interview almost 1,000 households spread across six states and divisions. This year's survey has identified 273 infantry and light infantry battalions active in eastern Burma, representing more than 30% of the Burmese Army's battalions nationwide. These troops are generally controlled by the State Peace and Development Council's (SPDC's) Coastal Command based in Mergui, South Eastern Command in Moulmein, Southern Command in Taungoo, Eastern Command in Taunggyi and Triangle Area Command in Keng Tung. Documentation in this report reflects that human rights violations committed by the Burmese Army as part of their counter-insurgency strategy are tantamount to crimes against humanity and remain a key cause of displacement. However, even the SPDC's military hierarchy has admitted that poor troop management, inadequate rations and harsh conditions resulted in low morale and an 8% increase in desertion during the past year. Rather than alleviating poverty, state-sponsored development initiatives primarily facilitate the consolidation of military control over rural communities and induce displacement. Local livelihoods in areas surrounding proposed hydro-electric dams along the Salween River have been further undermined during the past year, with additional troop deployments to the Hutgyi dam site in Karen State during September particularly notable. Similarly, the livelihoods of Mon villagers continue to be undermined by the imposition of forced labour to secure the gas pipeline transporting electricity to Thailand. The government's promotion of castor oil plantations has become more systematic, with reports of land confiscation, extortion and forced cultivation especially significant in Southern Shan State. Palm oil and rubber plantations operated as joint ventures between local Burmese Army commanders and foreign investors have caused similar problems in Tenasserim Division, Meanwhile over 3,000 acres of farm land was confiscated in northern Karenni State to pave the way for an industrial estate. Approximately 76,000 people were forced to leave their homes as a result of, or in order to avoid, the effects of armed conflict and human rights abuses during the past year. The number of people displaced was slightly lower than last year, which was primarily related to a relaxation of restrictions in Tenasserim Division. Forced migration was most concentrated in northern Karen State and eastern Pegu Division where counter-insurgency operations displaced approximately 43,000 civilians. While the total number of deaths in these four townships is unknown, at least 38 villagers have been killed by the Burmese Army during 2007 in Thandaung township alone. TBBC has previously reported that more than 3,000 villages were destroyed, forcibly relocated or otherwise abandoned in eastern Burma between 1996 and 2006. These field reports have recently been corroborated by high resolution commercial satellite imagery taken before and after the villages were displaced. Visual evidence includes the removal of structures from villages that were forcibly relocated, and burn scars where destroyed villages used to be. During the past year, at least 167 more entire villages have been displaced. Internal displacement in eastern Burma, however, is more commonly associated with the coerced movements of smaller groups rather than entire villages. This relates to impoverishment and forced migration caused by the confiscation of land, asset stripping, forced procurement policies, agricultural production quotas, forced labour, arbitrary taxation, extortion and restrictions on access to fields and markets. The compulsory and unavoidable nature of these factors is distinct from the voluntary profit-oriented, "pull-factors" more commonly associated with economic migration. The total number of internally displaced persons who have been forced or obliged to leave their homes and have not been able to return or resettle and reintegrate into society is estimated to be at least half a million people. This displaced population includes 295,000 people currently in the temporary settlements of ceasefire areas administered by ethnic nationalities. A further 99,000 civilians are estimated to be hiding from the SPDC in areas most affected by military skirmishes, while approximately 109,000 villagers have followed SPDC eviction orders and moved into designated relocation sites. While the overall figures are comparable to last year, lower estimates for relocation sites primarily reflect villagers' attempts at returning to former villages or resettling nearby in Tenasserim Division and Shan State. However, it is not known how sustainable these movements will be, while SPDC campaigns to forcibly relocate and consolidate villages have intensified in northern Karen State, eastern Pegu Division and northern Mon state. Higher estimates for the internally displaced in ethnic ceasefire areas are largely attributed to the expansion of authority exercised by the Democratic Karen Buddhist Army (DKBA) and the newly formed KNU/KNLA Peace Council and subsequent instability in central Karen State. A slight population increase reported from hiding sites reflects the protracted emergency for the most vulnerable communities in eastern Burma A feature of this report is the inclusion of trend assessments which have been derived from comparisons to findings from previous household surveys conducted by TBBC and partner agencies over the past few years. In terms of vulnerability, the prevalence of threats to personal safety and security has increased, and in particular the incidence of arbitrary arrest or detention and forced conscription to porter military supplies. Indicators suggest that restrictions on movement to fields and markets have almost doubled to become the most pervasive threat to livelihoods, ahead of forced labour and arbitrary taxation. Violence against women, and in particular the threat of domestic violence and physical assault, was perceived as most prevalent in relocation sites and mixed administration areas where Burmese Army troops are in close proximity..."
    Language: English, Burmese, Thai
    Source/publisher: Thailand Burma Border Consortium (TBBC)
    Format/size: pdf (8.1MB)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.tbbc.org/idps/report-2007-idp-burmese.pdf
    http://www.tbbc.org/idps/report-2007-idp-thai.pdf
    http://www.tbbc.org/resources/resources.htm
    Date of entry/update: 06 December 2010


    Title: Burma: The Changing Nature of Displacement Crises
    Date of publication: February 2007
    Description/subject: Introduction: "The shifting nature of conflict in Burma over the past fifteen years has structured a range of inter-linked displacement crises. In this paper, three main types of forced migration in – and from – the country are identified: Type 1 – armed-conflict-induced displacement; Type 2 – State/society-induced displacement; and Type 3 – livelihood/vulnerability-induced displacement. Each is addressed in a case study, with material drawn from different geographic areas, illustrating different aspects and impacts of (armed and state-society) conflict in Burma. This paper shows that internal displacement in Burma is not only caused by armed conflict in the insurgent-prone eastern borderlands. While the most acutely vulnerable internally displaced persons (IDPs) do live in those few areas of the country still affected by significant levels of armed conflict, the phenomenon of forced migration is more complex and widespread – the product of decades of mis-governance by the militarized state..."
    Author/creator: Ashley South
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Queen Elizabeth House, University of Oxford (RSC Working Paper No. 39)
    Format/size: pdf (438K)
    Date of entry/update: 27 February 2007


    Title: Conflict and displacement in Burma/Myanmar
    Date of publication: January 2007
    Description/subject: "...This chapter has described aspects of forced migration in Burma that are under-researched, including the phenomenon of serial displacement, and has proposed a three-part typology. Many internally displaced persons and others move repeatedly, sometimes for a combination of reasons; others have been displaced for some time and have found at least semi-durable solutions to their plight; many are living mixed with communities who are not—or have not recently been—displaced. Forced migrants’ needs can be assessed and appropriate interventions planned only if the full complexity of displacement situations in Burma is understood. Humanitarian (and political) actors should therefore respect and respond to the voices and agency of forced migrants and enrol their participation in all aspects of program planning and myanmar – the state, community 78 and the environment implementation. In most cases, forced migrants and communities threatened by displacement have special protection vulnerabilities related to the causes of migration (especially armed and state–society conflict). These concerns link humanitarian needs to explicitly political issues. Ultimately, substantial and sustained protection from forced migration, as well as the rehabilitation of displaced populations and reconstruction of communities, depends on resolutions to the conflicts that cause displacement in Burma. Unfortunately, efforts at conflict resolution have thus far met with only limited success.,,"
    Author/creator: Ashley South
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: 2006 Burma Update Conference via Australian National University
    Format/size: pdf (153K)
    Alternate URLs: http://epress.anu.edu.au/myanmar/pdf_instructions.html
    http://epress.anu.edu.au/myanmar/pdf/whole_book.pdf
    Date of entry/update: 30 December 2008


    Title: Internal Displacement in Eastern Burma, 2006 Survey
    Date of publication: November 2006
    Description/subject: “Both tragedy and hope are reflected in this fifth annual survey of internal displacement in eastern Burma. The tragedy is that such systematic and widespread violations of human rights and humanitarian law continue to occur with national impunity and a largely ineffective international response. Yet it is the ongoing commitment and courage of ethnic community-based organisations to support grassroots coping strategies and document the impacts of conflict, violence and abuse which inspires hope for the future of Burma. The Thailand Burma Border Consortium (TBBC) has been collaborating with ethnic community-based organisations to document the scale, distribution and characteristics of internal displacement since 2002. Collectively, these surveys have aimed to raise awareness about vulnerability in eastern Burma and inform the development of humanitarian protection strategies. Recognising that conditions for the internally displaced are always changing, this year's survey attempted to update population estimates and assess trends across different areas in more detail with higher resolution maps. TBBC and the participating community-based organisations designed the surveys collaboratively by drawing from the Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement. Although there were some changes for the sake of clarity, the questionnaire was similar to those used in previous years to facilitate trend analysis. Quantitative field surveys of the scale and distribution of internal displacement and the impacts of militarization and development have been based on interviews with key informants in 38 townships between June and August 2006. This has been complemented with qualitative field assessments about the causes and impacts of displacement which have been documented by community based organisations on an ongoing basis throughout the year. TBBC has previously reported that the Burmese Army has approximately doubled the deployment of battalions across eastern Burma since 1995. This survey has identified 204 infantry and light infantry battalions currently in eastern Burma, which represents approximately 40% of the government's frontline troops nation-wide. Such militarisation has facilitated the State Peace and Development Council's (SPDC's) counter-insurgency strategy which targets civilians in contravention of international humanitarian law. Accounts of such crimes against humanity have been documented by community based organisations in this report as contributing to conflict-induced displacement. State-sponsored development projects have done little to alleviate poverty in Burma, but have been significant causes of human rights abuses and displacement during the past year. The energy sector is Burma's largest recipient of foreign direct investment, but this report associates the gas pipeline in Mon State with forced labour, travel restrictions, and harassment. Similarly, proposed hydro-electric dams along the Salween River are linked with incidents of forced relocations, forced labour and the logging of community forests. Meanwhile commercial agriculture, and in particular the national development initiative to cultivate castor oil plants to produce bio-diesel, is reported to have induced widespread land confiscation, the imposition of procurement quotas and forced labour for the cultivation of seedlings. During the past year alone, this survey estimates that 82,000 people were forced to leave their homes as a result of, or in order to avoid, the effects of armed conflict and human rights abuses. These estimates are consistent with the annual average rate of displacement in eastern Burma since 2002, and reflect the SPDC's disregard for their responsibility to protect Burmese citizens from harm. While the distribution of forced migration during the past year was widespread, the most significant concentration was in northern Karen State and eastern Pegu Division. Counter-insurgency operations are reported to have killed at least 39 civilians and displaced over 27,000 others in this area during the past year. While the majority of people displaced during the past year fled in small groups, 232 entire villages were destroyed, forcibly relocated or otherwise abandoned. When combined with the findings of previous field surveys, 3,077 separate incidents of village destruction, relocation or abandonment have been documented in eastern Burma since 1996. Over a million people are understood to have been displaced from their homes in eastern Burma during this time. This reflects the cumulative impact of the Burmese Army's expanded presence and forced relocation campaign targeting civilians in contested areas. Some of these villages may have since been re-established, and indeed this survey has identified 155 villages that were at least partly repopulated during the past year. However, the sustainability of return and resettlement is restricted not only by livelihood constraints but also by the lack of official authorisation. Indeed, attempts to re-establish over 100 villages in previous years have already been thwarted by harassment leading to further rounds of displacement. The total number of internally displaced persons who have been forced or obliged to leave their homes and have not been able to return or resettle and reintegrate into society as of November 2006 is estimated to be at least 500,000 people. This population is comprised of approximately 287,000 people currently in the temporary settlements of ceasefire areas administered by ethnic nationalities, while 95,000 civilians are estimated to be hiding from the SPDC in areas most affected by military skirmishes and approximately 118,000 villagers have followed SPDC eviction orders and moved into designated relocation sites. These are conservative estimates for eastern Burma as it has not been possible to survey urban areas nor mixed administration areas. Overall this represents a decrease of approximately 40,000 internally displaced persons since October 2005. This is due to a decrease of 53,000 people in the estimates for ceasefire areas. Population movements have been recorded out of areas administered by the United Wa State Army (UWSA) due to lack of livelihood opportunities. Estimates in other ceasefire areas of Shan and Karenni states have also decreased, reflecting how the areas administered by non state actors have effectively been reduced by the expansion of SPDC control. While many of these villagers may remain internally displaced, it has not been possible to track their current status. Conversely, the number of people in relocation sites has increased by approximately 10,000 people. This is partly a result of broader survey reach in Tenasserim Division and partly due to new incidents of forced relocation in Shan State. However, a significant decrease has been recorded in Mon state, where restrictions on resettlement away from relocation sites have eased. Rather than reflecting increased freedom, this illustrates that as villagers in surrounding areas become resigned to complying with Burmese Army orders, the government's perceived need for relocation sites becomes redundant. While the overall estimates for people in hiding sites increased only slightly, there has been a significant increase in northern Karen State and eastern Pegu Division where approximately 55,000 villagers are currently hiding from government forces. This represents an increase of approximately 14,000 people since last year, and suggests that half of those displaced in the past year were previously living with the tacit approval of local SPDC authorities in mixed administration areas. These local arrangements offered little protection when the Southern and South Eastern Military Commands coordinated patrols by over 40 battalions to search for civilian settlements and destroy their means of survival..."
    Language: English, Burmese, Thai
    Source/publisher: Thailand Burma Border Consortium (TBBC)
    Format/size: pdf (1.7MB- ocr version; 2.864MB -- original and authoritative) 6.8, (Burmese) 7.9MB (Thai)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.tbbc.org/idps/report-2006-idp-english.pdf
    http://www.tbbc.org/idps/report-2006-idp-burmese.pdf
    http://www.tbbc.org/idps/report-2006-idp-thai.pdf
    Date of entry/update: 06 December 2010


    Title: Chronic Emergency - Health and Human Rights in Eastern Burma
    Date of publication: 07 September 2006
    Description/subject: This link leads to a document containing the Table of Contents of the report, with links to the English, Burmese and Thai versions... Executive Summary: "Disinvestment in health, coupled with widespread poverty, corruption, and the dearth of skilled personnel have resulted in the collapse of Burma’s health system. Today, Burma’s health indicators by official figures are among the worst in the region. However, information collected by the Back Pack Health Workers Team (BPHWT) on the eastern frontiers of the country, facing decades of civil war and widespread human rights abuses, indicate a far greater public health catastrophe in areas where official figures are not collected. In these eastern areas of Burma, standard public health indicators such as population pyramids, infant mortality rates, child mortality rates, and maternal mortality ratios more closely resemble other countries facing widespread humanitarian disasters, such as Sierra Leone, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Niger, Angola, and Cambodia shortly after the ouster of the Khmer Rouge. The most common cause of death continues to be malaria, with over 12% of the population at any given time infected with Plasmodium falciparum, the most dangerous form of malaria. One out of every twelve women in this area may lose her life around the time of childbirth, deaths that are largely preventable. Malnutrition is unacceptably common, with over 15% of children at any time with evidence of at least mild malnutrition, rates far higher than their counterparts who have fled to refugee camps in Thailand. Knowledge of sanitation and safe drinking water use remains low. Human rights violations are very common in this population. Within the year prior, almost a third of households had suffered from forced labor, almost 10% forced displacement, and a quarter had had their food confiscated or destroyed. Approximately one out of every fifty households had suffered violence at the hands of soldiers, and one out of 140 households had a member injured by a landmine within the prior year alone. There also appear to be some regional variations in the patterns of human rights abuses. Internally displaced persons (IDPs) living in areas most solidly controlled by the SPDC and its allies, such as Karenni State and Pa’an District, faced more forced labor while those living in more contested areas, such as Nyaunglebin and Toungoo Districts, faced more forced relocation. Most other areas fall in between these two extremes. However, such patterns should be interpreted with caution, given that the BPHW survey was not designed to or powered to reliably detect these differences. Using epidemiologic tools, several human rights abuses were found to be closely tied to adverse health outcomes. Families forced to flee within the preceding twelve months were 2.4 times more likely to have a child (under age 5) die than those who had not been forcibly displaced. Households forced to flee also were 3.1 times as likely to have malnourished children compared to those in more stable situations. Food destruction and theft were also very closely tied to several adverse health consequences. Families which had suffered this abuse in the preceding twelve months were almost 50% more likely to suffer a death in the household. These households also were 4.6 times as likely to have a member suffer from a landmine injury, and 1.7 times as likely to have an adult member suffer from malaria, both likely tied to the need to forage in the jungle. Children of these households were 4.4 times as likely to suffer from malnutrition compared to households whose food supply had not been compromised. For the most common abuse, forced labor, families that had suffered from this within the past year were 60% more likely to have a member suffer from diarrhea (within the two weeks prior to the survey), and more than twice as likely to have a member suffer from night blindness (a measure of vitamin A deficiency and thus malnutrition) compared to families free from this abuse. Not only are many abuses linked statistically from field observations to adverse health consequences, they are yet another obstacle to accessing health care services already out of reach for the majority of IDP populations in the eastern conflict zones of Burma. This is especially clear with women’s reproductive health: forced displacement within the past year was associated with a 6.1 fold lower use of contraception. Given the high fertility rate of this population and the high prevalence of conditions such as malaria and malnutrition, the lack of access often is fatal, as reflected by the high maternal mortality ratio—as many as one in 12 women will die from pregnancy-related complications. This report is the first to measure basic public health indicators and quantify the extent of human rights abuses at the population level amongst IDP communities living in the eastern conflict zones of Burma. These results indicate that the poor health status of these IDP communities is intricately and inexorably linked to the human rights context in which health outcomes are observed. Without addressing factors which drive ill health and excess morbidity and mortality in these populations, such as widespread human rights abuses and inability to access healthcare services, a long-term, sustainable improvement in the public health of these areas cannot occur..."
    Language: English, Burmese, Thai
    Source/publisher: Back Pack Health Worker Team
    Format/size: pdf (1.8MB, 2.2MB - English; 1,2MB - Burmese; 1.6MB - Thai)
    Alternate URLs: http://burmalibrary.org/docs3/ChronicEmergencyE-ocr.pdf
    http://www.burmalibrary.org/docs09/ChronicEmergency(English%20ver).pdf
    http://www.burmalibrary.org/docs09/ChronicEmergency(Burmese%20ver).pdf
    http://www.burmalibrary.org/docs09/ChronicEmergency(Thai%20ver).pdf
    http://www.ibiblio.org/obl/docs3/Chronic_Emergency-links.html
    Date of entry/update: 06 December 2010


    Title: Ending the Waiting Game: Strategies for Responding to Internally Displaced People in Burma
    Date of publication: June 2006
    Description/subject: "Ending the Waiting Game: Strategies for Responding to Internally Displaced People in Burma" argues that the crisis in Burma has reached a point where displaced people and other vulnerable populations simply cannot wait any longer for outside assistance, including health services, education, food production and building the capacity of civil society organizations in the country. U.S. sanctions against Burma's military regime currently prevent the provision of significant humanitarian aid."...Table of Contents Executive Summary i Introduction 1 Types of Displacement and Conditions of the Displaced Population 4 Displacement Resulting from Counter-insurgency 5 Displacement in Ceasefire Areas 6 Development-induced Displacement 7 Urban Displacement 7 Summary of Displacement by Geographic Area 8 Displacement as a Consequence of Economic Vulnerability 10 Conditions of the Displaced Population 10 Humanitarian Response Inside Burma 13 The Government of Burma 13 Burma-based Agencies 13 Thailand-based Agencies 17 The Debate Over Aid and Engagement 19 The Aid Dilemma 19 Concern about Aid Reaching People in Need 21 Sanctions vs Engagement 23 The International Community's Response to Burma 24 Rationale for International Assistance Inside Burma 31 Towards a More Effective Response to Internal Displacement 34 Burma-based Agencies 34 Thailand-based Agencies 36 The Government of Burma 37 Refugees International's Recommendations 38
    Author/creator: Kavita Shukla
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Refugees International
    Format/size: pdf (1.4MB)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.refugeesinternational.org/policy/in-depth-report/ending-waiting-game-strategies-respondi...
    Date of entry/update: 06 December 2010


    Title: PROFILE OF INTERNAL DISPLACEMENT : MYANMAR (BURMA) -- Updated periodically
    Date of publication: 10 May 2006
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Global IDP Project
    Format/size: pdf (1.2MB) 176 pages
    Date of entry/update: 27 June 2005


    Title: Die Wa in Gefahr. Nach dem Opiumbann droht in der Special Region 2 eine humanitäre Katastrophe
    Date of publication: 29 December 2005
    Description/subject: In den Grenzregionen des Shan State im Nordosten Burmas, die seit 1989 unter der Kontrolle der United Wa State Army (UWSA) ist, werden 65 Prozent des gesamten Opiums des Landes angebaut. Trotz der Bereitschaft der Landwirte konnten wegen minderwertiger Bodenbeschaffenheit und klimatischer Bedingungen bisher noch keine Erfolg versprechenden Alternativen zum Opiumanbau realisiert werden. Seit dem kompletten Bann im Jahre 2005 werden tiefgreifende humanitäre Konsequenzen für die Region in Form von Menschenhandel, Armut und mangelnder Sicherheit befürchtet. keywords: ethnic minorities, Wa, Shan State, opium production, opium trafficking, resettlement
    Author/creator: Michael Tröster
    Language: Deutsch, German
    Source/publisher: Asienhaus Focus Asien Nr. 26; S. 45-55
    Format/size: pdf
    Date of entry/update: 20 March 2006


    Title: Internal Displacement and Protection in Eastern Burma
    Date of publication: October 2005
    Description/subject: EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: "The Thailand Burma Border Consortium (TBBC) first collaborated with communitybased organizations to document the scale and distribution of internal displacement in Eastern Burma during 2002. Two years later, another survey was coordinated to enhance understanding about the vulnerability of internally displaced persons. These assessments sought to increase awareness about the situation in conflict-affected areas which remain largely inaccessible to the international community. More communities have been displaced during the past year while others have attempted to return to former villages, resettle elsewhere in Burma or continue their journey of forced migration into Thailand. As the environment is constantly evolving, situation assessments also need to be regularly revised. Part of the purpose of this report is thus to update estimates of the scale and distribution of internally displaced persons in eastern Burma. Threats against conflict-affected populations in eastern Burma have been well documented by a range of independent institutions. However, there is little information on humanitarian efforts to stop existing patterns of abuse, mitigate the worst consequences, prevent emerging threats and promote judicial redress. A second key objective is therefore to inform the development of humanitarian protection strategies for internally displaced persons and other civilians whose lives and livelihoods are threatened by war, abuse and violence. This year's surveys were designed in partnership with ethnic community based organizations with reference to the Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement and conducted between April and June 2005. Estimates for the scale and distribution of internal displacement have been compiled from interviews with key informants in 37 townships across the six states and divisions of eastern Burma. Analysis of issues relevant to humanitarian protection has been based around responses to 1,044 questionnaires with conflict-affected households spread evenly between hiding sites, government controlled relocation sites, ethnic administered ceasefire areas and mixed administration areas. These responses have been complemented by semistructured interviews with internally displaced persons, the four main non state actors in eastern Burma and ten humanitarian agencies based in Rangoon. During the past year it is estimated that a further 87,000 people were forced or obliged to leave their homes by the effects of war or human rights abuses. Border-wide, a further 68 villages were destroyed, relocated or otherwise abandoned during this period, including a number which had only recently been established by displaced persons. In the majority of cases, forced displacement was found to be caused by violence or abuse perpetrated by the armed forces of the ruling State Peace and Development Council (SPDC). This survey has also identified 88 previously abandoned villages which have been partially re-established during the past year. In this time, it is estimated that 40,000 people who had previously been displaced have returned to their homes or resettled elsewhere in eastern Burma. The total number of internally displaced persons in eastern Burma who have been forced or obliged to leave their homes over the past decade and have not been able to return or resettle and reintegrate into society is estimated to be at least 540,000 people. The population is comprised of 340,000 people currently in the temporary settlements of ceasefire areas administered by ethnic nationalities, while 92,000 civilians are estimated to be hiding from the Burma Army in areas most affected by armed conflict and approximately 108,000 villagers have followed eviction orders from the SPDC and moved into designated relocation sites. Overall this represents a slight increase of approximately 14,000 internally displaced persons since late 2004. This is attributed primarily to flight in Shan State away from SPDC patrols and into hiding, a significant inflow into Mon ceasefire areas, and methodological differences estimating populations in Tenasserim Division's relocation sites. These combined increases have outweighed reductions in the estimates for internally displaced populations hiding in Karen State as well as for ceasefire areas in Shan and Karen State. However, these population estimates are considered conservative as it has not been possible to include displaced persons in urban areas and rural mixed administration areas who may not have reintegrated into society but rather remain in a state of internal displacement. Patterns of insecurity, the coping strategies of survivors of abuse and violence, and attempts at engaging the humanitarian responsibility of relevant authorities were assessed to inform the development of protection strategies. The survey conclusively found that not only are soldiers from the Burma Army the primary perpetrators of abuse, but also that the Government of Burma is generally unable or unwilling to strengthen local coping strategies and protect civilians from harm. Legal insecurity is highlighted by findings that less than a quarter of the conflictaffected population own legal title deeds for land tenure while just 12% of civilians hiding from Burma Army patrols possess an identity card. The former reflects the threat of land confiscation while the latter increases vulnerability to extortion at checkpoints, harassment in contested areas, restricted access to markets and fields as well as another obstacle for the internally displaced against returning to former homes or resettlement elsewhere in Burma. Despite the range and severity of deliberate physical violence in conflict-affected areas, the prevalence of threats to civilian livelihoods is on a much greater scale. A third of households surveyed have been directly affected by arbitrary taxes and forced labour in the past year. During this period, the deliberate impoverishment and deprivation of civilians as a counter-insurgency strategy is reflected in 17% of households having had food supplies destroyed or confiscated. Similarly, a quarter of households in hiding and relocation sites reported having had housing destroyed or having been forcibly evicted during the past year. Although unable to stop or prevent violence and abuse, internally displaced and conflict-affected villagers have developed a range of coping strategies to resist threats and mitigate the worst consequences. Other civilians are the main source of early warning signals about approaching troops, which stresses the importance of building social capital, or networks of trust, within and between local communities for the development of a more protective environment. Hiding food supplies and preparing alternative hiding sites in case counterinsurgency patrols induce an emergency evacuation were the main approaches to coping with threats amongst households in hiding sites. Conversely, the main method of minimizing risks in relocation sites and mixed administration areas is reportedly to pay fines and follow orders. These findings suggest that abuses against civilians by government forces are motivated not only by retaliation against armed opposition patrols, but also by economic imperatives or greed. Six percent of households reported that they had at some point resorted to procuring a hand gun to minimize threats to safety and livelihoods. Given the threat of being suspected as either a rebel sympathizer by the SPDC or a government collaborator by the armed opposition, this gauge of the prevalence of assault weapons is considered high. Due to the breakdown in law and order and the ease of procurement, transport, concealment and use, the prevalence of small arms is in itself a significant threat of violent insecurity. Humanitarian responsibilities relate to ensuring that parties to a conflict respect human dignity and prevent harm from being inflicted on civilians. While it was beyond the possibility of this survey to engage Burmese national authorities, the views of non state actors were solicited. Humanitarian agencies based in Rangoon were also consulted about their experiences in dealing with the government. Non state actors acknowledged that the use of landmines was their main transgression in terms of threatening the safety and livelihoods of civilians. 86% of villagers surveyed were not aware of any signs on location warning about minefields, indicating that there is no systematic demarcation of minefields in eastern Burma. However the armed opposition authorities, and indeed a quarter of civilian households hiding in the most conflict-affected areas, perceived landmines as a necessary means of self-defense against the military might of the Burma Army. It was also admitted by non state actors that their protective capacities are limited. Authorities from ceasefire parties negotiated a cessation of hostilities ten years ago to reduce the deprivations suffered by the civilian population, but have still not been able to address ongoing human rights abuses. In areas of ongoing armed conflict, the non state actors responded that short term protection objectives are limited to deterring and delaying SPDC patrols, using radio communication to provide warnings to villagers of approaching troop movements, and securing access for local humanitarian agencies to provide relief aid. Humanitarian agencies based in Rangoon have managed to expand not only their access into eastern Burma but also the engagement of government authorities in policy-level dialogue during the past decade. However, United Nations (UN) agencies reported that since the purge of the former Prime Minister and his allies in October 2004, humanitarian agencies in Burma have either been disregarded or viewed with suspicion by the government. Unless the government is willing to engage in policy-level dialogue about protection concerns, it is recognised that the humanitarian space will contract further. At the same time humanitarian agencies increasingly feel squeezed by restrictions from donors who are worried that foreign aid may be prolonging the rule of an illegitimate government. A perceived concern is that humanitarian sanctions will further restrict contact with policy makers, and exacerbate the reluctance of the Burmese government to negotiate about protection concerns. The challenge for humanitarian responses is to promote protection oriented programming which includes assessment of the programme's impact on the conflict. These surveys sought to update estimates of internal displacement and inform the development of protection strategies for conflict-affected areas in eastern Burma. Recommendations are not presented, but it is hoped that this report will enlighten collaborative strategies to stop existing patterns of abuse and prevent emerging threats from harming internally displaced and other conflict-affected communities."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Thailand Burma Border Consortium
    Format/size: pdf (3.9MB, 4.1MB)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.ibiblio.org/obl/docs3/TBBC-2005-ocr.pdf
    http://www.ibiblio.org/obl/docs3/TBBC-Internal_Displacement_and_Protection_in_Eastern_Burma-2005.pdf
    Date of entry/update: 06 December 2010


    Title: Housing, Land, and Property Rights in Burma
    Date of publication: October 2004
    Description/subject: "...The main objective of this research is to examine housing, land, and property rights in the context of Burma’s societal transition towards a democratic polity and economy. Much has been written and discussed about property rights in their various manifestations, private, public, collective, and common in terms of “rights”. When property rights are widely and fairly distributed, they are inseparable from the rights of people to a means of living. Yet in the contemporary world, millions of people are denied access to the land, markets, technology, money and jobs essential to creation of livelihoods (Korten, 1998). The most significant worldwide problems of unjust property rights remain those associated with landlessness, rural poverty, and inequality (Hudson-Rodd & Nyunt, 2000)..."
    Author/creator: Nancy Hudson-Rodd
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Edith Cowan University, Centre for Housing Rights and Evictions (COHRE)
    Format/size: pdf (741K)
    Date of entry/update: 26 February 2007


    Title: Internal Displacement and Vulnerability in Eastern Burma
    Date of publication: October 2004
    Description/subject: EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: "In September 2002 the Thailand Burma Border Consortium (TBBC), formerly the Burmese Border Consortium, compiled a report “Internally Displaced People and Relocation Sites in Eastern Burma”. The report was written because although the Royal Thai Government was reluctant to accept more refugees and believed repatriation should occur as soon as conditions were judged suitable, new refugees were still arriving in Thailand. Since most of the new arrivals reported that they had formerly been living as internally displaced persons, TBBC considered that it was important to understand what was happening in the border areas before any planning for repatriation could begin. Since that time, the nature and scale of internal displacement in eastern Burma has been generally acknowledged, and humanitarian agencies based in Burma have been increasingly requesting and gaining access to some border areas. In particular, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) Myanmar has negotiated roving access to a number of townships of ‘potential refugee return’. UNHCR Thailand has also been engaging the Royal Thai Government, donors and non governmental organisations (NGOs) in a conceptual planning exercise for the eventual repatriation of the refugees. Much of Eastern Burma is, however, still inaccessible to international observers from inside the country and the initial steps being taken towards planning for repatriation make it even more important to understand what is happening in these areas. This report draws together the results of new surveys carried out by local community organisations who collectively have broad access to the border areas. Community organizations conducted field surveys across eastern Burma between April and July 2004.1 Population estimates have been gathered from key informants in 36 significant townships and cross-checked with estimates from other local humanitarian and human rights agencies wherever possible. Vulnerability indicators were also developed from a multi-stage cluster survey of 6,070 people and 1,071 households in 60 areas spread over six states and divisions. The sample population for this quantitative survey was distributed between internally displaced persons in free-fire areas, government relocation sites, ethnic ceasefire areas and mixed administration areas. Estimates recorded during this survey in 2004 indicate at least another 157,000 civilians have been displaced by war or human rights abuses since the end of 2002. This includes people from at least 240 villages which have been documented as completely destroyed, relocated or abandoned during the past two years. The current status of villages forcibly relocated prior to 2002 has not been comprehensively assessed, but attempts to return and re-establish more than 100 such villages in Tenasserim Division have been documented as thwarted by further displacement. Civilian displacement has continued at a high rate even though there has been a significant decrease in the number of villages forcibly relocated since the mid-late 1990s. This trend is indicative of the extent to which government troops had been deployed and villages forcibly evicted prior to 2002. Since then, the military government has been consolidating, rather than expanding, areas of control. High rates of civilian displacement in areas where forced village relocations have decreased are attributed to the harassment of people who had already deserted SPDC relocation sites to attempt returning to their village or resettlement nearby. The total number of internally displaced persons (IDPs) who have been forced or obliged to leave their homes and have not been able to return or resettle and reintegrate into society as of late 2004 is estimated to be at least 526,000 people. The population consists of 365,000 people in the temporary settlements of ceasefire areas administered by ethnic nationalities, while 84,000 civilians are estimated to be hiding from the military-government in free-fire areas and approximately 77,000 villagers still remain in designated relocation sites after having been forcibly evicted from their homes. This represents a decrease since 2002 when 633,000 people were estimated to be internally displaced in hiding sites, temporary shelters and relocation sites. This decrease can be attributed to a mix of sustainable return or resettlement, forced migration into the fringes of urban and rural communities, flight into refugee and migrant populations in Thailand and methodological differences in data collection. Speculation remains as to how many people on the fringes of rural and urban communities have been obliged to leave their homes and are unable to resettle and reintegrate, but whose status as internally displaced persons can not be verified. Indicators of vulnerability for the internally displaced population reflect a critical situation. The survey found that more than half of internally displaced households have been forced to work without compensation and have been extorted of cash or property during the past year. While these and other human rights abuses were widespread and a lack of protection was common in all areas, people in relocation sites have reportedly been affected the most. Livelihoods in free-fire areas are demonstrated as largely dependent on subsistenceoriented slash and burn agriculture, yet still they are undermined by government patrols searching for and destroying crops. Conversely, less households were documented in relocation sites than elsewhere as being involved in any type of rice farming, indicating a lack of access to land and greater restrictions on movement. Yet the survey also found the highest rates of hunting and gathering were in densely populated ceasefire areas, which is indicative of the livelihood constraints of resettlement into these areas. This report presents indicators which suggest there is a public health emergency amongst internally displaced persons in eastern Burma. A third of households surveyed had not been able to access any health services during the past year, contributing to high mortality rates from infectious diseases which can be prevented and treated, such as malaria. Child mortality and malnutrition rates are double Burma’s national baseline rate and comparable to those recorded amongst internally displaced populations in the Horn of Africa. The population structure shows significantly more children dependent on a smaller proportion of working age adults compared to official data sources for Burma. This working age adult population consists of a high proportion of women representing greater rates of mortality, economic migration, flight from abuse and military conscription amongst young adult men. Low levels of access to durable shelter are recorded and associated not only with limited protection from the climate but also adverse impacts on health and human dignity. Similarly, low levels of educational attainment are likely to restrict the capacity of internally displaced persons to cope and recover from all of these aspects of vulnerability. The surveys demonstrate that the problem of forced migration in Eastern Burma remains large and complex and that internally displaced populations are extremely vulnerable. As in 2002, TBBC presents this compilation of data without making any recommendations. The intention is that policy makers and humanitarian organisations might be better informed in terms of preparing for refugee repatriation and addressing the situation of internal displacement itself."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Thailand Burma Border Consortium (TBBC)
    Format/size: pdf (3.87MB, 4MB - Full, 1.7MB-Chs 1-3; 2.1MB - Chs 4-5)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.ibiblio.org/obl/docs/TBBC-IDPs2004-1-3 (Chapters 1-3)
    http://www.ibiblio.org/obl/docs/TBBC-IDPs2004-4-5 (Chapters 4-5)
    http://www.tbbc.org/resources/resources.htm
    http://www.ibiblio.org/obl/docs/TBBC-IDPs2004-full
    Date of entry/update: 06 December 2010


    Title: Burma's Dirty War - The humanitarian crisis in eastern Burma
    Date of publication: 24 May 2004
    Description/subject: "Up to a million people have fled their homes in eastern Burma in a crisis the world has largely ignored. Burma's refusal to release Aung San Suu Kyi from house arrest, and the boycotting of the constitutional convention this month by the main opposition, has thrust Burma into the spotlight again. But unseen and largely unremarked is the ongoing harrowing experience of hundreds of thousands of people in eastern Burma, hiding in the jungle or trapped in army-controlled relocation sites. Others are in refugee camps on the Thai-Burmese border. These people are victims in a counterinsurgency war in which they are the deliberate targets. As members of Burma's ethnic minorities - which make up 40 per cent of the population - they are trapped in a conflict between the Burmese army and ethnic minority armies. Surviving on caches of rice hidden in caves, or on roots and wild foods, families in eastern Burma face malaria, landmines, disease and starvation. They are hunted like animals by army patrols and starved into surrender. In interviews... refugees told Christian Aid of murder and rape, the torching of villages and shooting of family members as they lay huddled together in the fields. They recalled farmers who had been blown up by landmines laid by the army around their crops. This report, based on personal testimonies from refugees, tells the story of Burma's humanitarian crisis. On the brink of the Burmese government's announcement of a 'roadmap to democracy' for a new constitution, Burma's Dirty War argues that any new political settlement must include the crisis on the country's eastern borders. Burma's refusal to free Aung San Suu Kyi promises more intransigence and an even slower pace of change - with predictable human costs. This report calls on the UK and Irish governments, the EU and the UN to use what opportunity remains from the roadmap to democracy to press for an end to the conflict in negotiations with ethnic minorities. It also argues that the UN must gain access to the areas in crisis - despite the Burmese government ban on travel there by humanitarian agencies. Key recommendations include: * that the Burmese government cease human rights abuses, allow access to eastern Burma by humanitarian agencies including UN special representatives, and engage in dialogue with ethnic minority representatives * that the UK and Irish governments, the EU and the UN fund work with displaced people inside Burma and continue to support refugees in Thailand * that the UK and Irish governments, the EU and UN Security Council condemn Burma's human rights abuses against ethnic minorities, demand that it protect civilians from violence and insist that Burma allow access to humanitarian agencies The report argues that governments must seize the opportunity presented by the roadmap to push for genuine negotiations between the government, the National League for Democracy and ethnic minority organisations which can bring out a just and lasting peace..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Christian Aid
    Format/size: pdf (760K)
    Date of entry/update: 24 November 2010


    Title: State-induced violence and poverty in Burma
    Date of publication: April 2004
    Description/subject: "...The objective of this research paper is to describe specific ways in which the State Peace and Development Council (SPDC) deprives the people of Burma of their land and livelihood. Confiscation of land, labour, crops and capital; destruction of person and property; forced labour; looting and expropriation of food and possessions; forced sale of crops to the military; extortion of money through official and unofficial taxes and levies; forced relocation and other abuses by the State..."
    Author/creator: Dr Nancy Hudson-Rodd, Dr Myo Nyunt, Saw Thamain Tun, Sein Htay
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Edith Cowan University, National Council of Union of Burma (NCUB), Federation of Trade Unions-Burma (FTUB)
    Format/size: pdf (448K)
    Date of entry/update: 26 February 2007


    Title: PROFILE OF INTERNAL DISPLACEMENT: MYANMAR (BURMA) - Update, November 2003
    Date of publication: 13 November 2003
    Description/subject: Compilation of the information available in the Global IDP Database of the Norwegian Refugee Council (as of 13 November, 2003)..." PROFILE SUMMARY: Summary (November 2003):- "Notorious across the world for its suppression of Aung San Suu Kyi’s democracy movement, the military regime in Burma is less known for displacing hundreds of thousands of its own people. Between 600,000 and one million people remain internally displaced in Burma because of the military regime’s brutal policies to control border areas populated by ethnic minorities. Exposed to ongoing violence and systematic human rights abuses at the hands of government troops, these people are without protection from either their government or the international humanitarian community. This has affected the eastern border areas in particular, and especially the Karen, Karenni, Shan and Mon ethnic groups. In western Burma, the Muslim Rohingya people and other minority groups along the Bangladesh and India borders have also suffered from the military campaign. In addition, thousands more have been displaced in schemes to resettle the urban poor and the building of large-scale infrastructure projects. With their traditional livelihoods ruined and humanitarian assistance blocked by the army, the situation of Burma’s displaced people is desperate. In order to improve both the democratic process and the humanitarian situation, more active international diplomacy, and attention towards the situation in the ethnic minority areas is required from the UN, its agencies and international NGOs..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Global IDP Database (Norwegian Refugee Council)
    Format/size: pdf (974K)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.idpproject.org
    Date of entry/update: 26 February 2004


    Title: "I Will Not be Forced From My Own Land" - internal displacement in Burma
    Date of publication: November 2003
    Description/subject: "In a nation of 50 million people there are estimates that up to 1 million are Internally Displaced Persons (IDP). Despite the relatively recent use of the phrase internally displaced people in the context of Burma, there is evidence that the practices that lead to this displacement have been in place for a long period of time. While discussion of IDP’s tends to revolve around immediate assistance to concerns of health, housing and food, the sustained existence of this problem needs future efforts to take into account the root cause and structural patterns that often instigate the displacement as well as resolutions on how to offer and implement humanitarian assistance. This article will discuss further some of the root causes of displacement caused by Burmese military operations and look at the outcomes of displacement. The second part of this article will look at future resolutions and how long-term structural assistance needs to compliment immediate humanitarian assistance..."
    Author/creator: R Sharples
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: "Burma Issues" Newsletter Volume 13, Number 11
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 28 November 2003


    Title: RECLAIMING THE RIGHT TO RICE: FOOD SECURITY AND INTERNAL DISPLACEMENT IN EASTERN BURMA
    Date of publication: October 2003
    Description/subject: TABLE OF CONTENTS:- 1. Food Security from a Rights-based Perspective; 2. Local Observations from the States and Divisions of Eastern Burma:- 2.1 Tenasserim Division (Committee for Internally Displaced Karen Persons); 2.2 Mon State (Mon Relief and Development Committee); 2.3 Karen State (Karen Human Rights Group) 2.4 Eastern Pegu Division (Karen Office of Relief and Development); 2.5 Karenni State (Karenni Social Welfare Committee); 2.6 Shan State (Shan Human Rights Foundation)... 3. Local Observations of Issues Related to Food Security:- 3.1 Crop Destruction as a Weapon of War (Committee for Internally Displaced Karen Persons); 3.2 Border Areas Development (Karen Environmental & Social Action Network); 3.3 Agricultural Management(Burma Issues); 3.4 Land Management (Independent Mon News Agency) 3.5 Nutritional Impact of Internal Displacement (Backpack Health Workers Team); 3.6 Gender-based Perspectives (Karen Women’s Organisation)... 4. Field Surveys on Internal Displacement and Food Security... Appendix 1 : Burma’s International Obligations and Commitments... Appendix 2 : Burma’s National Legal Framework... Appendix 3 : Acronyms, Measurements and Currencies.... "...Linkages between militarisation and food scarcity in Burma were established by civilian testimonies from ten out of the fourteen states and divisions to a People’s Tribunal in the late 1990s. Since then the scale of internal displacement has dramatically increased, with the population in eastern Burma during 2002 having been estimated at 633,000 people, of whom approximately 268,000 were in hiding and the rest were interned in relocation sites. This report attempts to complement these earlier assessments by appraising the current relationship between food security and internal displacement in eastern Burma. It is hoped that these contributions will, amongst other impacts, assist the Asian Human Rights Commission’s Permanent People’s Tribunal to promote the right to food and rule of law in Burma... Personal observations and field surveys by community-based organisations in eastern Burma suggest that a vicious cycle linking the deprivation of food security with internal displacement has intensified. Compulsory paddy procurement, land confiscation, the Border Areas Development program and spiraling inflation have induced displacement of the rural poor away from state-controlled areas. In war zones, however, the state continues to destroy and confiscate food supplies in order to force displaced villagers back into state-controlled areas. An image emerges of a highly vulnerable and frequently displaced rural population, who remain extremely resilient in order to survive based on their local knowledge and social networks. Findings from the observations and field surveys include the following:..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Burmese Border Consortium
    Format/size: pdf (804K)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.ibiblio.org/obl/docs/BBC-Reclaiming_the_Right_to_Rice.pdf
    Date of entry/update: 07 November 2003


    Title: FMO Research Guide: Burma
    Date of publication: August 2003
    Description/subject: "Historically underdeveloped and divided, Burma today is politically isolated, increasingly militarised, economically mismanaged by its own authorities, and socially and culturally divided along ethnic, religious, and language lines. Following independence from Britain in 1948, parties representing the ethnic minority population have been struggling for greater autonomy from the central Burmese regime. Following nationwide pro-democracy demonstrations in 1988, the State Law and Order Restoration Council (SLORC) staged a coup to take over the governing of Burma, reinstating martial law and imposing restrictions on opposition to the government. Thousands of people were killed during this uprising. Elections held in 1990 whereby the National League for Democracy (NLD), headed by the Nobel Peace Prize laureate Aung San Suu Kyi, won a landslide victory have never been honoured. The contemporary military regime does not allow access to the country for research purposes, and therefore research on displacement is largely carried out by interviewing people fleeing the country. However, consistent accounts of human rights violations are available over a number of years. Displacement in Burma results mostly from systematic patterns of human rights abuses associated with militarisation and conflict in ethnic minority areas. Human rights violations, carried out with impunity, include numerous acts of arbitrary executions, killings, torture, rape, forced labour, forced relocation, use of child soldiers, and violations of religious freedoms. These have been documented over the years and have increased in intensity since 1988. Muslims and Christians are often persecuted directly because of their minority status. Recent development efforts to encourage tourism have led to forced labour and further displacement. It has been reported that the islands off the coast of Burma being developed for tourism have had their populations relocated under conditions of extreme brutality, including killings. There are refugees from Burma in Thailand, Bangladesh, India, Malaysia, and China. It is also thought that the Lao PDR has refugees from Burma, but nothing is known about this population. Contemporary Burma is a highly mine-affected country and in 2002 was the world's largest producer of illicit opium..."
    Author/creator: Patricia Hynes
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Forced Migration Online (FMO)
    Format/size: html, pdf (488K)
    Date of entry/update: 20 November 2003


    Title: IDPs in Burma: A short summary
    Date of publication: April 2003
    Description/subject: "Burma has a population of 50 million people, recent estimates place 2 million of those people as Internally Displaced Persons (IDP). They live precarious and transient lives in the jungles of Burma’s ethnic border areas and in the more urban central plains. They are denied the stability of having a home and a livelihood and are forced into a constant state of movement: never having the opportunity to maintain a home, their farms, access to education and medical facilities and peace of mind..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Burma Issues (Peaceway Foundation)
    Format/size: pdf (219 K)
    Date of entry/update: 06 December 2010


    Title: Pushing Past the Definitions: Migration From Burma to Thailand
    Date of publication: 19 December 2002
    Description/subject: Important, authoritative and timely report. I. THAI GOVERNMENT CLASSIFICATION FOR PEOPLE FROM BURMA: Temporarily Displaced; Students and Political Dissidents ; Migrants . II. BRIEF PROFILE OF THE MIGRANTS FROM BURMA . III REASONS FOR LEAVING BURMA : Forced Relocations and Land Confiscation ; Forced Labor and Portering; War and Political Oppression; Taxation and Loss of Livelihood; Economic Conditions . IV. FEAR OF RETURN. V. RECEPTION CENTERS. VI. CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATIONS.... "Recent estimates indicate that up to two million people from Burma currently reside in Thailand, reflecting one of the largest migration flows in Southeast Asia. Many factors contribute to this mass exodus, but the vast majority of people leaving Burma are clearly fleeing persecution, fear and human rights abuses. While the initial reasons for leaving may be expressed in economic terms, underlying causes surface that explain the realities of their lives in Burma and their vulnerabilities upon return. Accounts given in Thailand, whether it be in the border camps, towns, cities, factories or farms, describe instances of forced relocation and confiscation of land; forced labor and portering; taxation and loss of livelihood; war and political oppression in Burma. Many of those who have fled had lived as internally displaced persons in Burma before crossing the border into Thailand. For most, it is the inability to survive or find safety in their home country that causes them to leave. Once in Thailand, both the Royal Thai Government (RTG) and the international community have taken to classifying the people from Burma under specific categories that are at best misleading, and in the worst instances, dangerous. These categories distort the grave circumstances surrounding this migration by failing to take into account the realities that have brought people across the border. They also dictate people’s legal status within the country, the level of support and assistance that might be available to them and the degree of protection afforded them under international mechanisms. Consequently, most live in fear of deportation back into the hands of their persecutors or to the abusive environments from which they fled..." Additional keywords: IDPs, Internal displacement, displaced, refoulement.
    Author/creator: Therese M. Caouette and Mary E. Pack
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Refugees International and Open Society Institute
    Format/size: html (373K) pdf (748K, 2.1MB) 37 pages
    Alternate URLs: http://www.ibiblio.org/obl/docs/Caouette&Pack.htm
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Burma�s Internally Displaced: No Options for a Safe Haven
    Date of publication: 10 October 2002
    Description/subject: "Refugees International Advocate Veronika Martin and human rights lawyer Betsy Apple recently completed an assessment mission to the Thai-Burmese border. There are few fates worse than being an internally displaced person (IDP) in Burma. IDPs inside Burma are divided into two categories: those living under the strict control of the Burmese government in �relocation sites,� and those living in hiding in the jungle from the Burmese army. Both options present a high risk of human rights abuses, a lack of food, and limited or no access to healthcare and education. According to a recent report compiled by the Burma Border Consortium (BBC), more than 2,500 villages have been either destroyed, relocated, or abandoned, affecting 633,000 individuals over the last five years in eastern Burma. Since 1996, an estimated minimum of one million people living in the ethnic states that border Thailand have been displaced. This year has seen a marked increase in the frequency of counter-insurgency operations in ethnic minority areas, leading in turn to an increase in the level of internal displacement..."
    Author/creator: Veronika Martin, Betsy Apple
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Refugees International via Asian Tribune
    Format/size: html (1 page)
    Date of entry/update: 06 December 2010


    Title: Burma Human Rights Yearbook 2001-2002: Internally Displaced People and Forced Relocation
    Date of publication: September 2002
    Description/subject: "The situation of Internally Displaced People (IDPs), in Burma remained critical throughout 2001. The US State Department estimates that there could be up to1 million members of ethnic minority groups who the SPDC has forcibly relocated from their villages and districts, and who are currently living along the Thai border. Reports from NGOs also estimate that an additional 1 million IDPs are living a precarious existance in other locations throughout the country..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Human Rights Documentation Unit, NCGUB
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Internally Displaced People and Relocation Sites in Eastern Burma
    Date of publication: September 2002
    Description/subject: "Perhaps one million people living in the States and Divisions of Burma adjacent to the Thailand border have been displaced since 1996. At least 150,000 have fled as refugees or joined the huge “illegal” migrant population in Thailand.[2] Countless others have moved away to other villages and towns in Burma. This report estimates that at least 632,978 displaced people are still currently either living in hiding (approximately 268,000 people), or in more than 176 forced relocation sites (approximately 365,000 people), in these border areas. It also identifies 2,536 ‘affected villages’, which are known to have been destroyed (usually burnt) and/ or relocated en masse, or otherwise abandoned due to Burmese Army (Tatmadaw) activity...The actual number of relocation sites and residents, and of IDPs in hiding, is probably significantly higher than that estimated here..." IDPs in Hiding or Temporary Settlements; Number of Relocation Sites; IDPs in Relocation Sites; Affected Villages (destroyed, abandoned, or relocated); Total IDP Population. Tenasserim; Mon State; Karen State; Karenni State; Shan State.
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Compiled by Burma Border Consortium
    Format/size: html (main text 217K) 15 pages incl. maps; pdf (6.8MB)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.tbbc.org/resources/2002-09-11-BBC-Relocation_Site_Report.pdf

    http://www.ibiblio.org/obl/docs/BBC_Relocation_Site%20Report_(11-9-02).doc (Original Word version -- no links to maps or photos)
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Burma Human Rights Yearbook 2000: Internally Displaced People and Forced Relocation
    Date of publication: October 2001
    Description/subject: "The plight of Internally Displaced People, or IDPs, in Burma was a continuing problem over the year 2000. Burma contributes over an estimated 1 million IDPs to the estimated world IDP population of 21 million and estimated Asian IDP population of 5 million. (The CIDKP put the IDP number at 2 million in 2000.) Internally displaced persons in Burma live under conditions of severe deprivation and hardship. All but few of these people are without adequate access to food or basic social, health and education services. A large number of this group are women and children. As no legal instruments for IDPs exist in todays world, this mass population group in Burma has been left vulnerable because of the lack of international protection and assistance available to them. IDPs in Burma have been displaced by similar factors, which although are many, are all related to SPDC presence and policy..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Human Rights Documentation Unit, NCGUB
    Format/size: html
    Alternate URLs: Yearbook main page: http://www.ibiblio.org/obl/docs/yearbooks/Main.htm
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: A Village on Fire: the Destruction of Rural Life in Southeastern Burma
    Date of publication: 31 October 2000
    Description/subject: "...Under military control, rural Burma's subsistence farming village is losing its viability as the basic unit of society. Internally displaced people are usually thought to have fled military battles in and around their villages, but this paradigm doesn't apply to Burma. In the thousands of interviews conducted by the Karen Human Rights Group with villagers who have fled their homes, approximately 95 percent say they have not fled military battles, but rather the systematic destruction of their ability to survive, caused by demands and retaliations inflicted on them by the SPDC military. Where there is fighting, it is fluid and sporadic, and most villagers can avoid it by hiding for short periods in the forest. Once the SPDC occupies the area around their village, however, the suffering is inescapable. Villages, rooted to the land, are defenseless and vulnerable, and villages can be burned -- destroying rural life in southeastern Burma. "
    Author/creator: Kevin Heppner
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: "Cultural Survival Quarterly" Issue 24.3
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Refugees, Returnees and IDPs in Burma
    Date of publication: 24 May 2000
    Description/subject: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace Seminar on IDPs in Burma,
    Author/creator: Ms. Kathleen Newland
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 29 November 2010


    Title: Total Denial Continues - Earth rights abuses along the Yadana and Yetagun pipelines in Burma
    Date of publication: May 2000
    Description/subject: "Three Western oil companies -- Total, Premier and Unocal -- bent on exploiting natural gas , entered partnerships with the brutal Burmese military regime. Since the early 1990's, a terrible drama has been unfolding in Burma. Three western oil companies -- Total, Premier, and Unocal -- entered into partnerships with the brutal Burmese miltary regime to build the Yadana and Yetagun natural gas pipelines. The regime created a highly militarized pipelinecorridor in what had previously been a relatively peaceful area, resulting in violent suppression of dissent, environmental destruction, forced labor and portering, forced relocations, torture, rape, and summary executions. EarthRights International co-founder Ka Hsaw Wa and a team of field staff traveled on both sides of the Thai-Burmese border in the Tenasserim region to document the conditions in the pipeline corridor. In the nearly four years since the release of "Total Denial" (1996), the violence and forced labor in the pipeline region have continued unabated. This report builds on the evidence in "Total Denial" and brings to light several new facets of the tragedy in the Tenasserim region. Keywords:, human rights, environment, forced relocation, internal displacement, foreign investment. ADDITIONAL KEYWORDS: forced resettlement, forced relocation, forced movement, forced displacement, forced migration, forced to move, displaced
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Earthrights International
    Format/size: pdf (6MB - OBL ... 20MB - original)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.earthrights.org/files/Reports/TotalDenialCont-2ndEdition.pdf
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Fear and Hope: Displaced Burmese Women in Burma and Thailand
    Date of publication: March 2000
    Description/subject: Executive Summary: "The impact of decades of military repression on the population of Burma has been devastating. Hundreds of thousands of Burmese have been displaced by the government�s suppression of ethnic insurgencies and of the pro-democracy movement. As government spending has concentrated on military expenditures to maintain its control, the once-vibrant Burmese economy has been virtually destroyed. Funding for health and education is negligible, leaving the population at the mercy of the growing AIDS epidemic, which is itself fueled by the production, trade and intravenous use of heroin, as well as the trafficking of women. The Burmese people, whether displaced by government design or by economic necessity, whether opposed to the military regime or merely trying to survive in a climate of fear, face enormous challenges. Human rights abuses are legion. The government�s strategies of forced labor and relocation destroy communities. Displacement, disruption of social networks and the collapse of the public health systems provide momentum for the spreading AIDS epidemic�which the government has barely begun to acknowledge or address. The broader crisis in health care in general and reproductive health in particular affects women at all levels; maternal mortality is extremely high, family planning is discouraged. The decay�and willful destruction�of the educational system has created an increasingly illiterate population�without the tools necessary to participate in a modern society. The country-wide economic crisis drives the growth of the commercial sex industry, both in Burma and in Thailand. Yet, international pressure for political change is increasing and nongovernmental organizations and some UN agencies manage to work within Burma, quietly challenging the status quo. The delegation met with Aung San Suu Kyi, General Secretary of the National League for Democracy, who is considered by much of the international community as the true representative of the Burmese people. Despite her concerns that humanitarian aid can prop up the SPDC, she was cautiously supportive of direct, transparent assistance in conjunction with unrelenting international condemnation of the military government�s human rights abuses and anti-democratic rule. The delegation concluded that carefully designed humanitarian assistance in Burma can help people without strengthening the military government. And, until democracy is restored in Burma, refugees in Thailand must receive protection from forced repatriation, and be offered opportunities for skills development and education to carry home. On both sides of the border, women�s groups work to respond to the issues facing their communities; they are a critical resource in addressing the critical needs for education, reproductive health and income generation." ADDITIONAL KEYWORDS: forced resettlement, forced relocation, forced movement, forced displacement, forced migration, forced to move, displaced
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Women's Commission on Refugee Women and Children
    Format/size: pdf (182.54 K)
    Date of entry/update: 06 December 2010


    Title: CHR 2000: Food Scarcity in Myanmar
    Date of publication: 08 February 2000
    Description/subject: Written statement submitted by the Asian Legal Resource Centre (ALRC). "1. The right to food is a fundamental human right. It is guaranteed under the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (art. 25 (1)) and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (art. 11). 2. In the Union of Myanmar, people are being denied the right to food by the overwhelming military domination of that country. Substantial evidence suggests that the Government of Myanmar is systematically denying food to the civilian population through a range of practices implemented to ensure perpetuation of its undemocratic rule. 3. Food scarcity exists in Myanmar neither because of a natural disaster nor through mere administrative incompetence, but rather as a result of pervasive militarization. The Government has not only failed to meet its positive obligations to ensure conditions of food security, but it must also be held responsible for administrative and military practices that have resulted in widespread denial of food to civilian populations. In coming to these conclusions, the Asian Legal Resource Centre agrees with the findings of the People's Tribunal on Food Scarcity and Militarization in Burma, which was invited to examine the issue by the Asian Human Rights Commission. The People's Tribunal released its findings in a report entitled "Voice of the Hungry Nation" (Asian Human Rights Commission, October 1999)..."
    Author/creator: Asian Legal Resource Centre
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: United Nations (E/CN.4/2000/NGO/61)
    Format/size: pdf, MS Office
    Date of entry/update: 05 January 2011


    Title: Hard Cases: Internal Displacement in Turkey, Burma (Myanmar) and Algeria
    Date of publication: December 1999
    Description/subject: "In some countries, the internally displaced are beyond the reach of international humanitarian organizations. Although the displaced populations concerned may be in dire need of assistance and protection, and could benefit immeasurably from outside support, few or no steps are taken, or strategies developed, to gain access to them. Whereas conflict is the inhibiting factor in some cases, in others, the governments concerned do not request aid and by and large reject any that is offered. Only rarely does the United Nations Security Council deem such situations to be threats to international peace and security and demand entry. Leading examples of governments that successfully bar international involvement with their displaced populations are Turkey, Burma, and Algeria. The situations in the three countries are, of course, quite different. In Turkey and Burma, governments have deliberately uprooted people in order to destroy their possible links to insurgency movements. In Algeria, displacement is a by-product of conflict, primarily between the government and Islamist insurgent groups..."
    Author/creator: Roberta Cohen
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: "Forced Migration Review" No. 6
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 29 November 2010


    Title: Internally Displaced People: Refugees in their own land
    Date of publication: October 1999
    Description/subject: The Regional Consultation on the Situation of Internally Displaced Peoples, hosted by Forum Asia, was held in Bangkok at SASA International House on October 21 and 22, 1999. There were 43 participants over the two days, with interests in seven countries in the region. The backgrounds of the participants were diverse: while the majority represented NGOs working directly with displaced peoples and displaced peoples' organisations, there were also representatives from the UNHCR, academics and Forum Asia.
    Language: English
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Voice of the Hungry Nation
    Date of publication: October 1999
    Description/subject: This document presents the findings, conclusions and recommendations of the People's Tribunal on Food Scarcity and Militarization in Burma. The Tribunal’s work will appeal to all readers interested in human rights and social justice, as well as anyone with a particular interest in Burma. The Asian Human Rights Commission presents this report in order to stimulate discourse on human rights and democratization in Burma and around the world.
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: People's Tribunal on Food Scarcity and Militarization in Burma
    Format/size: English version
    Alternate URLs: http://www.burmadebate.org/archives/fall99bttm.html#hungry
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Voice of the Hungry Nation
    Date of publication: September 1999
    Description/subject: an edited version of a report by the People's Tribunal on Food Scarcity and Militarization in Burma, which was published by the Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) in October 1999.
    Author/creator: People's Tribunal on Food Scarcity and Militarization in Burma
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: "Burma Debate", Vol. VI, No. 3
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Internal Displacement in Myanmar
    Date of publication: July 1999
    Description/subject: Urban and rural displacement in Myanmar
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Burma Ethnic Research Group (BERG)
    Format/size: html (146K)
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Rip: Rest in Pieces
    Date of publication: January 1997
    Description/subject: Urban Development. On Nov 14th 1996, the Slorc posted a notice at the gate of Kyandaw Cemetery giving relatives one month's notice to move the remains to a new site at Shwe Nyaung-bin, two hours drive from Rangoon. Kyandaw cemetery is located on 50-70 acres of what has become prime real estate in downtown Rangoon, near Hantha-waddy intersection. Both Burmese and foreigners are buried there of Christian, Muslim, Hindu, and Buddhist faiths. Rumours abound in Rangoon as to what the military government wants the land for; a casino to be built by Khun Sa, a hotel to be built with foreign investment, or, a Japanese shopping center.
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: "The Irrawaddy", Vol. 5. No. 1
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Total Denial - A Report on the Yadana Pipeline Project in Burma
    Date of publication: 10 July 1996
    Description/subject: "'Total Denial' catalogues the systematic human rights abuses and environmental degradation perpetrated by SLORC as the regime seeks to consolidate its power base in the gas pipeline region. Further, the report shows that investment in projects such as the Yadana pipeline not only gives tacit approval and support to the repressive SLORC junta but also exacerbates the grave human rights and environmental problems in Burma.... The research indicates that gross human rights violations, including summary executions, torture, forced labor and forced relocations, have occurred as a result of natural gas development projects funded by European and North American corporations. In addition to condemning transnational corporate complicity with the SLORC regime, the report also presents the perspectives of those most directly impacted by the foreign investment who for too long have silently endured the abuses meted out by SLORC for the benefit of its foreign corporate partners." ...Additional keywords: environment, human rights violations.
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: EarthRights International (ERI) and Southeast Asian Information Network (SAIN)
    Format/size: pdf (310K)
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Burma Human Rights Yearbook 1994: 16 - Internally Displaced Persons
    Date of publication: September 1995
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Human Rights Documentation Unit of the NCGUB
    Format/size: html (48K)
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Burma Human Rights Yearbook 1994: 17 - Forced Relocation
    Date of publication: September 1995
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Human Rights Documentation Unit of the NCGUB
    Format/size: html (81K)
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Flüchtlinge innerhalb Burmas
    Description/subject: Innerhalb Burmas, dem heutigen Myanmar, leben 2 Millionen Menschen auf der Flucht, Internally Displaced People (IDP) genannt. Auch viele Karen leben in den unzugänglichen Dschungelgebieten nahe der Grenze zu Thailand.
    Author/creator: N.a.
    Language: German, Deutsch
    Source/publisher: Helfen ohne Grenzen
    Format/size: Html (13k)
    Date of entry/update: 18 August 2007


  • Burma/Myanmar: "Development"-induced displacement

    Individual Documents

    Title: A Foreseeable Disaster in Burma: Forced Displacement in the Thilawa Special Economic Zone
    Date of publication: November 2014
    Description/subject: Conclusion: "The displacement in Thilawa took place amid a broader climate of state-sponsored abuse in Burma, where people have no recourse to challenge illegal government action. Specifically, the displacement process in Thilawa violated residents’ human rights, negatively affected their ability to provide for themselves, and resulted in deteriorating food security and limited ability to access health care. The TSEZMC will relocate 846 more households when development begins on phase two of the project. If the TSEZMC, the Burmese government, and JICA continue to operate as they did in the first phase of the project, these households will suffer the same fate. Burma requires economic development, but given the historical context of forced displacement, impunity for human rights violations, weak rule of law, and corruption, there is great risk that economic development projects will benefit a select few in power at the expense of deepened deprivation and poverty for many others. Although the results of this survey cannot be generalized for the country as a whole, the survey does highlight risks inherent to any major development project in Burma. Having recently emerged from more than 50 years of military dictatorship, it will take time and commitment to build a strong civil society that is capable of educating people in Burma about their rights. Residents generally fear their government, which for decades has controlled the population by force. The government has yet to implement sufficient mechanisms to protect people from human rights abuses and ensure justice for victims. Given this context, any development project in the country carries great risk of human rights violations. JICA and other organizations implementing such projects should make every effort to proactively identify the potential negative outcomes and consult with the affected community about how best to minimize or eliminate these risks. The Thilawa case suggests that foreign organizations cannot rely on the Burmese government to protect the human rights of forcibly displaced populations..."
    Author/creator: Andrea Gittleman, Widney Brown
    Language: English, Japanese
    Source/publisher: Physicians for Human Rights
    Format/size: pdf (557K-English version; 334K-Japanese reduced version; 2.32MB-Japanese original)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.burmalibrary.org/docs20/PHR-2014-11-Burma-Thilawa_Report-jp-red.pdf
    https://s3.amazonaws.com/PHR_Reports/Burma-Thilawa-English-Report-Nov2014.pdf
    https://s3.amazonaws.com/PHR_Reports/burma-displacement-report-japanese-2014.pdf
    Date of entry/update: 18 November 2014


    Title: Photo Set: Villagers register concerns about proposed Hatgyi Dam
    Date of publication: 26 June 2012
    Description/subject: "This Photo Set includes 28 photos taken in two villages in the southern area of Bu Tho Township in Papun District, and in three villages in the northern area of Lu Pleh Township in Pa'an District, all of which are located in the Salween river valley near the site where the Hatgyi dam will be constructed. These photographs depict villagers throughout these townships pursuing their livelihoods and children attending school. According to the community member who spoke with villagers in the area and took these photos, as well as local media,[1] the villagers will be displaced by flooding near the dam site if construction at Hatgyi goes ahead as planned. This Photo Set also includes evidence of an earlier meeting in Myaing Gyi Ngu regarding intended forced relocation of villages in the proposed Hatgyi dam site prior to flooding. The photos depict a pamphlet on the dam, as well as solar panels, LED lights and batteries that were given to villagers in the areas that will be affected. In order to pre-empt forcible relocation or flooding, some villagers in the area have chosen to close schools in preparation for moving."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: pdf (616K)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b60.html
    Date of entry/update: 13 July 2012


    Title: Resisting the Flood: Communities taking a stand against the imminent construction of Irrawaddy dams
    Date of publication: October 2009
    Description/subject: Message from KDNG: "As a network of residents of Kachin State, we, the Kachin Development Networking Group, have been monitoring plans by the stateowned China Power Investment Corporation and Burma’s military regime to build seven dams on the Irrawaddy River and its two main tributaries. In 2007 we published the report, "Damming the Irrawaddy" which surveyed the environment and peoples in the affected area and analyzed the negative impacts of these dams. Today construction of the 2,000-megawatt Chibwe Dam on the N’Mai River is already underway. The forced relocation of 15,000 people to clear out the flood zone of the Irrawaddy Myitsone Dam has also begun. In August 2009 villagers were informed that they must begin to move out within two months. There have been no public assessments of the projects, no consultation with affected people within the flood zone or downstream, and no consent from local residents or the larger population of Burma. As a result, public resistance to the dams is growing. Despite the risks of arrest, torture or death for dissent in military-ruled Burma, brave people are demanding a halt to the dams. Mass prayer ceremonies calling for the protection of the rivers have been held along the river banks and in churches up and downstream. Posters, open letters, and graffi ti from students, elders and prominent leaders have objected to the dams. In a face-to-face meeting with the Burma Army’s Northern Commander, local residents made it clear that no amount of compensation will make up for the losses these dams will bring to their community and future generations. We stand with the people of Kachin State and throughout Burma who oppose these dams. The demand to stop this project has been made clear to our military rulers and now we specifically appeal to China Power Investment Corporation and the government of China to stop these dams..."
    Language: English, Burmese, Chinese
    Source/publisher: Burma Rivers Network
    Format/size: pdf (1.37MB - English; 2.42MB - Burmese; 1.21MB - Chinese)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.burmariversnetwork.org/images/stories/publications/burmese/ResistingtheFlood-Burwebsite.... (Burmese)
    http://www.burmariversnetwork.org/images/stories/publications/chinese/ResistingtheFloodChinese.pdf (Chinese)
    Date of entry/update: 21 November 2009


    Title: Roots and Resilience - Tasang dam threatens war-torn Shan communities
    Date of publication: July 2009
    Description/subject: 'The report “Roots and Resilience” by the Shan Sapawa Environment Organization focuses on the ecologically unique area of Keng Kham, a community of 15,000 that was forcibly relocated over ten years ago; the majority have fled to Thailand. Today the estimated 3,000 that remain are managing to maintain their livelihoods and culture despite the constant threats of the Burma Army and the impending Tasang dam. Indigenous Shan cultural practices, river-fed farms, sacred cave temples and pristine waterfalls are depicted in photos from this isolated war-zone, together with updated information about the dam project, which has been shrouded in secrecy. The 7,110 MW Tasang Dam is the biggest of five dams planned on the Salween River; the majority of the power from the dam will be sold to Thailand. Project investors include the Thai MDX Company and China’s Gezhouba Group Company. Thailand’s support for the controversial dam was recently reiterated when the project was included in its national Power Development Plan. Military tension has escalated in recent months in Shan State as the Burmese regime has been putting pressure on the United Wa State Army to transform into a “Border Guard Force.” Abuses linked to anti-insurgency campaigns are also on the rise.'
    Language: English, Thai
    Source/publisher: Shan Sapawa Environmental Organization
    Format/size: pdf (4.68MB - English; 6.58MB - Thai)
    Alternate URLs: http://salweenwatch.org/images/PDF/rootsandresiliencethai.pdf
    Date of entry/update: 05 October 2009


    Title: Damming the Irrawaddy
    Date of publication: 22 October 2007
    Description/subject: Executive Summary: "The Irrawaddy, one of Asia's great river systems which flows through Burma's heartlands, is about to be dammed. Burma's military junta is allowing Chinese companies to build a giant 152-meter-tall hydropower dam and transmit the electricity back to China. The dam is one in a series that the junta has planned involving the export of power to neighboring countries. While the regime will gain new revenues, Burma's ordinary citizens, who have no say in the process, will bear the costs. A project-launching ceremony for the dam at the confluence (or Myitsone in Burmese), where the Irrawaddy begins, was held in May 2007 in Burma's northernmost Kachin State. The dam will generate 3,600 MW of electricity, most of which will be transmitted to China, fitting into the Chinese Central Government's 'West to East Power Transmission Policy' The power will be worth an estimated US$500 million per year. The Irrawaddy Myitsone dam is the first in a series of seven large Chinese dams to be built along this waterway. Deeply concerned about the dam's potential impacts, elders, community leaders and villagers from across Kachin State have sent protest letters directly to Senior General Than Shwe and the military's Northern Commander to stop the project, but the objections have so far fallen on deaf ears. An estimated 47 villages will be inundated in a region recognized as one of the world'seight "hottest hotspots of biodiversity." Approximately 10,000 people will be displaced, losing their livelihoods, and exacerbating the existing problems of unemployment, drug addiction and HIV/AIDS in the area. Roads that are the link betweenmajor towns in theremote state will be cutoffby the floods impacting communication, transportation, and trade. Recent dam breaks in nearby rivers in 2006 have swept away houses and bridges, causing fatalities and destroying power stations and dam structures beyond repair. Northern Burma is earthquake-prone, and the Irrawaddy Myitsone dam site is less than 100 km from the major Sagaing fault line. Dam breakage or unnatural flood surges would be disastrous for Myitkyina, the capital city of Kachin State that lies only 40 kilometers downstream of the dam. The well-documented negative impacts of large dams on fisheries, flood plain farming and river bank cultivation will impact the millions that rely on the Irrawaddy. Health concerns that include an increase in malaria and the release of toxic methyl-mercury from the dam's reservoir will endanger Burma's people, further burdening a healthcare system that is ranked as one of the worst in the world. The critically endangered Irrawaddy dolphin may become extinct in its namesake river. Human rights abuses by the military have been extensively reported, including the junta's use of troops and landmines to secure large development projects, resulting in forced labor, land confiscation and threats to life. There is no reason to expect that the communities living at the Irrawaddy Myitsone dam site will not suffer the same consequences. Women are particularly susceptible to sexual violence by troops. In addition to these risks, women face pressures to participate in the sex trade once construction sites are set up and livelihoods are lost, and are increasingly vulnerable to human trafficking. For centuries, the Myitsone has been the source of songs, poems and legends which are not only the heritage of the Kachin but all the people of Burma. If this dam were to go ahead, a national cultural landmark would be permanently submerged and lost to future generations. The Kachin Development Networking Group (KDNG) joins those who have already spoken out to call for an end to the Irrawaddy Myitsone dam project. The ruling military junta is promoting mega-development that places all the costs and risks on disenfranchised peoples while fortifying military control. Small-scale alternatives that recognize the rights of local communities and empower them to participate and manage resources are possible. China is an important neighbor that can be a positive influence in the region. KDNG calls on China to abide at least by its own standards when operating in Burma and to heed the voices of affected peoples."
    Language: English, Burmese
    Source/publisher: Kachin Development Networking Group
    Format/size: pdf (2.55MB and 1.6MB - English; 2.68MB - Burmese)
    Alternate URLs: http://burmalibrary.org/docs4/Damming-the-Irrawaddy-bur.pdf (Burmese)
    http://burmalibrary.org/docs4/Damming-the-Irrawaddy-eng.pdf (English, 1.6MB)
    Date of entry/update: 22 October 2007


  • Burma: Internal displacement/forced migration of individual ethnic groups

    • Internal displacement/forced migration of Kachin

      Websites/Multiple Documents

      Title: KACHIN emergency page
      Description/subject: Maps, Baseline data, Population, 3W
      Language: English, Burmese
      Source/publisher: Myanmar Information Management Unit (MIMU)
      Format/size: html, pdf
      Date of entry/update: 04 July 2012


      Individual Documents

      Title: IDPs in Kachin State - List of IDPs as of 31 August 2012
      Date of publication: 31 August 3023
      Description/subject: By District, Camp; population figures by by age and gender
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Social Affairs Ministry office, KSG
      Format/size: pdf (55K)
      Date of entry/update: 10 September 2012


      Title: Humanitarian Situation in Kachin & Rakhine States (05 Nov 2012)
      Date of publication: 05 November 2012
      Description/subject: Text, maps and photos
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA)
      Format/size: pdf (646K)
      Date of entry/update: 07 November 2012


      Title: From persecution to deprivation - International donors neglect 60,000 displaced Kachin on China-Burma border
      Date of publication: 02 October 2012
      Description/subject: "About 60,000 Kachin villagers fleeing Burma Army attacks and persecution, who are sheltering in Kachin-controlled territory along the China-Burma border, have received almost no international aid since conflict broke out in June 2011. Data compiled from local relief groups shows that international aid agencies, including the UN, have provided only 4% of basic food needs of this displaced population, who have been kept alive almost entirely by private donations from local and overseas compatriots. Over 2 million US dollars are needed a month for food. Lack of official access and fears of aid diversion have been cited by international donors as reasons for not responding to the crisis. However, well-established mechanisms exist to deliver aid accountably through local community-based organizations. Escalating conflict has caused numbers of displaced to triple over the past year, creating an untenable burden for local communities. International donors must immediately step in to coordinate a large-scale relief effort to address the needs of these displaced Kachin..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Kachin Women's Association Thailand (KWAT)
      Format/size: pdf (412K-OBL version; 1.5MB-original)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.kachinwomen.com/images/stories/publication/from_persecution_deprivation.pdf
      Date of entry/update: 04 October 2012


      Title: Fighting and Ongoing Displacement in Kachin State, Burma: Update
      Date of publication: 01 June 2012
      Description/subject: KEY DEVELOPMENTS: "While ceasefire negotiations are taking place in some ethnic areas, attacks continue in Kachin State, Northern Burma. The Burma Army is pressing its attacks in Kachin State with over 100 battalions deployed. There are over 50,000 Kachin people displaced, over 60 Kachin civilians killed and 100 Kachin soldiers killed. Burma Army casualties are unknown, but estimated at 1,000 wounded and killed. Along with the KIO, WPN, Partners and other organizations, the Kachin FBR teams are helping those in need"
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Free Burma Rangers (FBR)
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2012


      Title: Kachin Response Plan March 2012-February 2013 (June 2012 revision)
      Date of publication: June 2012
      Description/subject: Executive Summary: "Instability that started in June 2011 across Kachin and northern Shan states has resulted in displace‐ ment, damage of infrastructure and loss of lives and livelihoods. Despite ongoing peace negotiations be‐ tween parties to the conflict, incidents continue to be reported.    The number of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) has been steadily increasing since the beginning of the conflict to an estimated 65,000 IDPs in July 2012. These people sought refuge in camps, in pub‐ lic buildings, with host families or in the forest. In addition, an estimated 6,000 to 7,000 persons have reportedly sought refuge in China. The numbers of IDPs continue to fluctuate and in some locations, a small number of IDPs temporarily returned to their villages to attempt savaging some of their liveli‐ hood, leaving some of their family members in camps or with relatives. Available information indi‐ cates that these returns are not permanent or sub‐ stantial in numbers, as IDPs continue to be con‐ cerned over ongoing tensions and instability as well as presence of landmines...In an effort to improve the level of assistance and co‐ ordination, local and international partners undertook an analysis of the situation in November 2011 and identified scenarios for the coming six months, against which sectoral plans and priorities were identified. The plan was revised in February 2012, and again in June 2012 taking into account the rapidly changing situa‐ tion, protracted displacement and ongoing discussions around return planning.   The revised planning document includes an analysis of the assistance provided to date, of the scenario in the coming year (March 2012‐February 2013), and a re‐ view of sectoral requirements, including those to cater for existing gaps and expected need for additional re‐ sources for the provision of life‐saving relief assistance as well as to support pockets of return for a total of up to 85,000 people affected by the ongoing instability. This follows the steady increase in the numbers of IDPs across Kachin and Northern Shan States, partly in re‐ sponse to ongoing incidents and insecurity in these areas. It also takes into consideration the additional needs caused by the monsoon rains.   Partners estimated that relief assistance would be re‐ quired even if the situation was to normalize in the coming months, as most of the IDPs lost their posses‐ sions, their sources of livelihood, the planting season and social services would take some time to become fully functional again. In addition, the monsoon season has an adverse impact on the already challenging shel‐ ter and WASH conditions in the IDP locations, as well as on the logistical situation. Road conditions are con‐ tinuously deteriorating due to the heavy rains, making the provision of assistance all the more important.   In line with the previous version of the document de‐ veloped in March 2012, the plan concentrates on the immediate relief requirements for one year (March 2012‐February 2013). The requirements articulated in the plan include remaining needs of up to 85,000 people either currently displaced or likely be dis‐ placed in the months to come. Humanitarian part‐ ners predict that a total of US$35.8 million are re‐ quired to cover the humanitarian needs for the pe‐ riod of March 2012 to February 2013. Priorities for sectoral interventions include:..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: UN OCHA
      Format/size: pdf (987K)
      Date of entry/update: 28 September 2012


      Title: Burma Army Mortars Villages and Burns Homes in Kachin State; 50,000 people displaced
      Date of publication: 22 April 2012
      Description/subject: KEY DEVELOPMENTS: "Burma Army fighting continues in Kachin State since the original outbreak of violence on 9 June 2011, when Burma Army soldiers broke the ceasefire previously held with the Kachin Independence Army (KIA). As Burma Army attacks continue, the KIA attempts to defend the population and numerous clashes have occurred between Burma Army and KIA soldiers. Burma Army soldiers have also repeatedly attacked civilian villages, often occupying and looting the village afterwards and forcing villagers to flee. Free Burma Ranger teams have collected multiple reports of extrajudicial killing, imprisonment and torture. There are over 50,000 Internally Displaced People in camps on the border, with thousands more hiding in the jungle."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Free Burma Rangers (FBR)
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2012


      Title: Kachin plight reveals Burma's patchy progress
      Date of publication: 02 April 2012
      Description/subject: '"Welcome to our new Kachin townships," the camp administrator said sarcastically as he guided us down the muddy path leading to one of the dozens of refugee camps scattered through Kachin, the thin sliver of land which forms Burma's northernmost region. Makeshift shelters constructed from canvas and bamboo are now home for thousands of internally displaced people. The United Nations refugee agency say there are more than 50,000 displaced people here, the Kachin put the figure much higher..."
      Author/creator: Sue Lloyd Roberts
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: BBC Newsnight
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 03 April 2012


      Title: Untold Miseries - Wartime Abuses and Forced Displacement in Burma’s Kachin State
      Date of publication: 19 March 2012
      Description/subject: 'When Burmese President Thein Sein took office in March 2011, he said that over 60 years of armed conflict have put Burma’s ethnic populations through “the hell of untold miseries.” Just three months later, the Burmese armed forces resumed military operations against the Kachin Independence Army (KIA), leading to serious abuses and a humanitarian crisis affecting tens of thousands of ethnic Kachin civilians. “Untold Miseries”: Wartime Abuses and Forced Displacement in Kachin State is based on over 100 interviews in Burma’s Kachin State and China’s Yunnan province. It details how the Burmese army has killed and tortured civilians, raped women, planted antipersonnel landmines, and used forced labor on the front lines, including children as young as 14-years-old. Soldiers have attacked villages, razed homes, and pillaged properties. Burmese authorities have failed to authorize a serious relief effort in KIA-controlled areas, where most of the 75,000 displaced men, women, and children have sought refuge. The KIA has also been responsible for serious abuses, including using child soldiers and antipersonnel landmines. Human Rights Watch calls on the Burmese government to support an independent international mechanism to investigate violations of international human rights and humanitarian law by all parties to Burma’s ethnic armed conflicts. The government should also provide United Nations and humanitarian agencies unhindered access to all internally displaced populations, and make a long-term commitment with humanitarian agencies to authorize relief to populations in need.'
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Human Rights Watch
      Format/size: pdf (1.7MB - OBL version; 2.25MB - original))
      Alternate URLs: http://www.hrw.org/sites/default/files/reports/burma0312ForUpload_1.pdf
      Date of entry/update: 20 March 2012


      Title: Humanitarian Situation and Response Plan in Kachin - March 2012 update
      Date of publication: 12 March 2012
      Description/subject: "...Between June 2011 and February 2012, instability across Kachin and northern Shan states resulted in displacement, damage of infrastructure and loss of lives and livelihoods. Despite ongoing peace negotiation between parties to the conflict, incidents continue to be reported. Additionally, there are indications that a number of people fled just across the Myanmar-China border and live with relatives or in temporary makeshift camps, but information is still unclear and cannot be independently verified. The number of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) steadily increased from September 2011 (approx 20,000 people) to an estimated 50-55,000 people at present. These people sought refuge in camps, in public buildings, in host families or in the jungle. The numbers of IDPs continue to fluctuate and in some locations, some IDPs temporarily return to their villages to attempt salvaging some of their livelihood, leaving some of their family members in camps or with relatives. Available information indicates that these returns are not permanent or substantial in numbers, as IDPs continue to be concerned over ongoing tensions and instability as well as presence of landmines. Whilst the Kachin State Government started a planning exercise encompassing return and recovery operations, the Union Government and the Kachin State Government have clearly stated that only those who wish to return should do so, and that assistance in camps must continue. The State Government indicated relief aid and recovery operations will require support from the aid community well into 2013. Whilst partners are able to provide a wide range of assistance to some 19,000 Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) located in fully accessible towns of Myitkyina, Waingmaw, Bhamo, Mansi, Momauk, Putao and Shwegu, some (mostly local) partners do have some degree of access to population in other locations. Limited ability for a wide range of partners to reach all those in need resulted in further suffering, as gaps and inequality in assistance is a fact of life for a significant portion of the affected people..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: UN OCHA
      Format/size: pdf (595K)
      Date of entry/update: 13 March 2012


      Title: Burma Army continues attacks, burns houses and kills one man and two women; over 40,000 Kachin people now displaced by attacks and more preparing to run
      Date of publication: 22 January 2012
      Description/subject: KEY DEVELOPMENTS: * The Burma Army is currently attacking within six miles of Mai Ja Yang, a city in Kachin State that is a refuge for over 1,000 displaced people * The Burma Army is firing an average of 100 mortar rounds per day into this area and is receiving reinforcements. * Over 40,000 Kachin people now displaced by attacks and more are preparing to run
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Free Burma Rangers (FBR)
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2012


      Title: Myanmar - Monthly Humanitarian Update. Issue: December 2011 / January 2012
      Date of publication: January 2012
      Description/subject: Key Developments: • Displacement and humanitarian needs continue to increase in Kachin State due to continued instability. A UN team visited Laiza in Kachin State and provided household family kits to IDPs... • Serious concern over southern Chin State Food insecurity.
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: UN OCHA
      Format/size: pdf (3.4MB)
      Date of entry/update: 17 February 2012


      Title: Myanmar: Displacement in Kachin State - 28 December 2011
      Date of publication: 28 December 2011
      Description/subject: HIGHLIGHTS/KEY PRIORITIES: • Displacement and humanitarian needs continue to increase. The urgent needs include shelter, NFIs, WASH, vaccines and psychosocial support, among others... • The UN team visited Laiza and provided NFI assistance to IDPs. Advocacy for follow up missions across all affected areas continues
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: UN OCHA
      Format/size: pdf (329K)
      Date of entry/update: 17 February 2012


      Title: Burma Army Kills Woman and Continues Attacks in Ba Maw District, Kachin State
      Date of publication: 27 December 2011
      Description/subject: The Burma Army continues to attack people in three townships of Ba Maw District, Kachin State: Mun Si Township, Shwegu Township and Ba Maw Township. On 16 December 2011, Burma Army soldiers killed a woman from Prang Kawng Village. The woman, 30-year-old Lamung Kaw Seng, suffered from a mental disability. As Burma Army troops approached the village, all the villagers fled except for Lamung Kaw Seng. When the soldiers found her, they killed her and threw her into a toilet pit.
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Free Burma Rangers (FBR)
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2012


      Title: Burma Army Continues Attacks in Kachin State as of 14 December 2011
      Date of publication: 16 December 2011
      Description/subject: KEY DEVELOPMENTS: * The Burma Army continued attacks against the Kachin people and every day there is shelling from attacking Burma Army units. There has been no ceasefire by the Burma Army troops in this area. * There are over 30,000 displaced Kachin villagers now in hiding.
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Free Burma Rangers (FBR)
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2012


      Title: Humanitarian Situation and Response Plan in Kachin - 13 December 2011
      Date of publication: 13 December 2011
      Description/subject: CURRENT SITUATION: "Instability in Kachin and Shan States restarted in early June 2011 and resulted in the displacement of populations, loss of lives and livelihoods and dam-ages to infrastructure. Following a Government invi-tation, an inter-agency rapid needs assessment was conducted from 20-26 September in 39 locations in some IDPs sites (camps, host families, public build-ings) of five townships (Bhamo, Momauk, Myitky-ina, Khaunglanhpu and Waingmaw) targeting 5,925 IDPs. Two townships Mansi and Shwegu could not be assessed due to security concerns. Of the as-sessed beneficiaries, some 4% were vulnerable, be-sides there were 56% children under 18 years of age, 17% of children under 5 and 12.5% female or child headed IDP families. Although figures of displaced population continue to fluctuate and are reportedly increasing on a daily basis, it is currently estimated that between 35,000 and 40,000 IDPs may have left their homes and sought refuge in camps, with friends and relatives or into the forest across the affected region. As an indication of the rapidly increasing caseload, accord-ing to the Kachin State authorities, between Sep-tember and the end of November 2011, the number of IDPs living in Myitkyina, Waingmaw, Bhamo, Mansi, Momauk and Shwegu has increased from 5,900 to 10,000 IDPs. Across all affected areas, available –albeit not independently verified - infor-mation indicate that, in the same period, the num-ber of displaced passed from 20,000 to 35-40,000 persons..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: UN OCHA
      Format/size: pdf (765K)
      Date of entry/update: 17 February 2012


      Title: Burma Army Kills Villager and Burns Homes While 3000 Flee Ongoing Attacks in Kachin State
      Date of publication: 30 November 2011
      Description/subject: "The Burma Army has killed a villager and over 20 villages have fled attacks and mortar fire in Momauk Township, Kachin State. Light Infantry Battalion (LIB) 73 under Division 88 has been attacking villages, with troops from Divisions 33, 44, 66 also entering the area. At least 400 Burma Army soldiers have been involved in the attacks, using 120mm and 60mm mortars and machine guns. Fighting in the area has increased and the Burma Army is building at least four new camps, using forced labor. Over 3,000 people have been displaced."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Free Burma Rangers (FBR)
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2012


      Title: Troops raze Kachin villages, locals flee
      Date of publication: 11 November 2011
      Description/subject: "Burmese troops burned down around 50 homes in a village in eastern Kachin state two days ago as they prepare for an offensive against the Kachin Independence Army (KIA), despite assertions from fleeing residents that no rebels inhabit the village. In response, the KIA has told locals living in areas close to the town of Waingmaw to leave, prompting some 3,000 people to join those who fled the razed Aungja village as they make for the border with China. A DVB reporter in Kachin state said that Burmese army battalions were closing in on the KIA’s Brigade 3 in Sanpai, which was being fiercely defended by the rebels..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Democratic Voice of Burma (DVB)
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2012


      Title: Myanmar: Displacement in Kachin State - Humanitarian Update No. 1
      Date of publication: 26 October 2011
      Description/subject: • The instability in Kachin State that started in early June 2011 has resulted in the displacement of populations, loss of livelihoods and damages to infrastructure... • The recently-completed joint assessment in 39 locations in Kachin State reveals urgent needs in several sectors, including food, education, shelter, health, NFIs and water and sanitation... • Access and delivery of assistance remain challenging
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: UN OCHA
      Format/size: pdf (218K)
      Date of entry/update: 17 February 2012


      Title: Kachin Rapid Assessment |1
      Date of publication: September 2011
      Description/subject: Executive Summary: "The instability in Kachin and Shan States that started in early June 2011 has resulted in the displacement of populations, loss of lives and livelihoods and damages to infrastructure. The Kachin State government, local and community]based organizations have been providing some assistance to the displaced since the outset of the conflict. International organizations have been providing limited assistance through support to local and community]based organizations, while continuing to advocate for humanitarian assistance to be provided to all civilians in need. Following a Government invitation, a rapid needs assessment was conducted in 39 locations in some areas of five townships: Bhamo, Momauk, Myitkyina, Khaunglanhpu and Waingmaw, and targeted 5,925 internally displaced persons (IDPs). Two townships ] Mansi and Shwegu ] could not be assessed due to security reasons. Of the total assessed population, the assessment findings indicate that 57% are female and 56% under]18. The IDPs are temporarily residing in community buildings, temporary camps/shelters or with host families. Most of the IDPs are located in urban areas, while those in rural areas are primarily being sheltered by host families. While the number of IDPs is fluctuating on a daily basis, the assessment found that a large majority of those assessed ] 4,026 ] has been displaced for over two months. Among people with special needs the survey identified 70 unaccompanied minors, 196 female] or child]headed households, 40 chronically ill and 36 persons with disabilities. In general, due to the easier accessibility and the presence of a larger number of aid agencies, the IDPs in Myitkyina and Waingmaw have been receiving more assistance than those in Bhamo and Momauk. Access and delivery of assistance for many of the locations continue to be a major challenge, particularly in the southern townships of Bhamo, Momauk, Mansi and Shwegu given the security situation and damage to infrastructure, including access routes. Living conditions, particularly in larger temporary camps/shelters and community buildings where the population density is high, are challenging. The assessment found that 20 of the 39 surveyed locations are in urgent need of additional shelter assistance. Temporary camps/shelters would need to be upgraded with improved roofing, more durable and safer shelters, additional numbers of tents to lessen the population density, allocation of cooking spaces and relocation of latrines further away from the living quarters. These measures would make the temporary camps/shelters healthier and safer for children and women. IDPs in community buildings such as churches and community halls also suffer from over]population and the resulting lack of adequate sleeping space as well as lack of privacy for families. I. EXECUTIVE SUMMARY While some non]food items (NFIs) have been provided by the Government and local and community]based organizations, to date, most of the IDPs require additional NFI support, including plastic sheeting, cooking utensils, blankets and clothes. These needs are most urgent in Bhamo and Momauk. Over half of IDPs in temporary camps/shelters and community buildings are facing food access issues. While food assistance has temporarily alleviated concern over immediate food shortages in over half of the locations that reported food access difficulties, a number of camps have yet to receive food assistance. The food security situation in Khaunglanhpu]La Jar camp in Khaunglanhpu and AungThar Baptist Church in Bhamo is of concern, and food assistance should be considered. People staying in host families in Momauk, in Momauk Baptist Church and 3]mile Kachin Baptist Church in Bhamo are experiencing lack of food stocks, and the food security situation in these locations would need to be explored further. Overall, the IDPs indicated a need for more diversified food assistance, which should be explored given the reported observable malnutrition in the locations assessed. The assessment suggests that the nutritional status of children needs to be further investigated. While access to water for domestic and hygiene uses is sufficient, availability of drinking water is an issue, with only 40% of IDPs having access to sufficient quantities of safe drinking water. The issue is particularly critical in Bhamo where all locations reported insufficient access to drinking water. Latrine use is wide]spread and aid agencies have provided basic sanitary facilities in all temporary camps/shelters and community buildings. However, some of the locations with larger number of IDPs need more latrines. Some latrines would need to be upgraded for sanitary and safety reasons. Hygiene promotion would be needed in a majority of the assessed locations, along with provision of hygiene items. There has been no report of disease outbreak or mortality cases since June 2011 in surveyed locations. Over half of the sites currently have access to health care services provided by basic health staff, while the others Kachin Rapid Assessment |1 5 in 14 locations only receive minimal health support through community health workers. Measles immunization campaign is needed in 31 locations, where a limited number of under]2 children has records of having had measles vaccination. Bed nets are needed in a majority of the locations. Essential medical supplies are needed in 35 out of the 39 locations. Some 1,055 primary school children and 1,249 secondary to high school children were identified amongst the assessed IDPs. Primary school children in all locations have access to varying degree of schooling support ] either access to nearby school facilities or to temporary learning spaces ] which they regularly attend. However, only a few secondary and high school children seem to attend school, due to lack of access and their contribution to household chores, particularly in the absence of household heads. Education materials are in short supply at all locations. Temporary learning spaces are not sufficiently equipped. A majority of the schools do not have adequate water and sanitation facilities. Early Childhood Development (ECD) centers have been established in six locations, benefiting 201 or 20% of all under]five IDP children. Efforts to construct additional ECD centers are currently ongoing. The number of under]18 separated or unaccompanied children was 221 at the time of the assessment, while 12.5% of households are either female] or childheaded. This points to the need for preventative measures to mitigate potential risk factors. Extra measures for ensuring the safety of women and children would need to be taken, particularly in the temporary camps/ shelters, including improved lighting at night, separate bathing spaces and latrines for men and women and appointment of security focal points. Needs of those with special needs such as the elderly and persons with disabilities would need to be taken into account. Fear and anxiety over the current, uncertain situation were voiced."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: UNOCHA, Humanitarian Partners in Kachin
      Format/size: pdf (2.8MB)
      Date of entry/update: 02 December 2011


    • Internal displacement/forced migration of Karen villagers

      Websites/Multiple Documents

      Title: Displacement Monitoring: Regular updates on protection concerns for villagers in Dooplaya and Pa'an districts and adjacent areas in Thailand
      Date of publication: 21 October 2011
      Description/subject: "Civilians in Dooplaya and Pa'an districts continue to be impacted by conflict between the Tatmadaw and armed Karen groups, who have increased fighting since November 7th 2010. The situation remains highly unstable and civilians report a variety of human rights and security concerns related to ongoing conflict and conflict-related abuse. In order to provide as current information as possible on the fighting and related human rights and protection concerns, KHRG has developed this page as a 'Displacement Monitoring' section of the KHRG website. Immediate situation updates, news bulletins, field reports, maps and photo galleries regarding the situation for civilians in Dooplaya are accessible through links in the table at the bottom of this page."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 29 January 2012


      Title: "Inside News"
      Description/subject: 4 issues a year on landmines, forced relocation, Burma army attacks, IDP health, education and many other issues affecting Internally Displaced Karen People.
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Committee for Internally Displaced Karen People (CIDKP)
      Format/size: pdf
      Alternate URLs: http://www.newsinside.wordpress.com/ ("Inside News" blog)
      Date of entry/update: 31 March 2009


      Individual Documents

      Title: Legal Memorandum: War Crimes and Crimes against Humanity in Eastern Myanmar
      Date of publication: 05 November 2014
      Description/subject: Conclusion: "...This memorandum describes a Myanmar military counterinsurgency offensive that involved the widespread targeting of civilians in northern Kayin State and eastern Bago Division. Myanmar Army soldiers fired mortars at villages, opened fire on fleeing villagers, destroyed homes, laid landmines in civilian locations, forced villagers to work and porter, and captured and executed civilians. The impact on the population was massive. Tens of thousands of individuals were displaced during the campaign and many were killed. In Thandaung Township—the area which was the focus of the Clinic’s investigation—nearly every village was affected by the Offensive and almost all of the villagers residing in black areas were forced to flee. Evidence collected by the Clinic during the investigation demonstrates that the actions of Myanmar Army personnel during the Offensive constitute crimes under international criminal law. These crimes include the war crimes of attacking civilians, displacing civilians, destroying or seizing the enemy’s property, pillage, murder, execution without due process, torture, and outrages upon personal dignity, and the crimes against humanity of forcible transfer of a population, murder, enslavement, torture, and other inhumane acts. The Clinic has also collected evidence relevant to the war crime of rape, as well as the crimes against humanity of rape and persecution. More research and analysis is necessary to determine whether these crimes could be included in a criminal case associated with the Offensive..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: International Human Rights Clinic at Harvard Law School
      Format/size: pdf (850-reduced version; 4.4MB-original)
      Alternate URLs: http://hrp.law.harvard.edu/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/2014.11.05-IHRC-Legal-Memorandum.pdf
      Date of entry/update: 06 November 2014


      Title: Photo Set: More than 100 households displaced from Toh Boh Dam construction site in Toungoo
      Date of publication: 23 August 2012
      Description/subject: "This Photo Set presents 17 still photographs taken by a local community member who has been trained by KHRG to monitor human rights conditions. The photos were all taken in March 2012 at the Toh Boh Dam construction site in Tantabin Township within locally-defined Toungoo District. According to the community member who took these photos, more than 100 households have been relocated from the area now occupied by the dam construction site, where construction is ongoing."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
      Format/size: pdf (400K), html
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b71.html
      Date of entry/update: 24 August 2012


      Title: Papun Situation Update: Lu Thaw Township, November 2011
      Date of publication: 17 January 2012
      Description/subject: "This report includes a situation update submitted to KHRG in November 2011 by a villager living in a hiding site in northern Lu Thaw Township, Papun District. The villager described an incident that occurred in October 2011 in which Tatmadaw soldiers fired six mortar shells into an area in which civilians are actively seeking to avoid attacks by Tatmadaw troops; no one was killed or injured during the attack. This situation update places the occurrence of such incidents in the context of the repeated and prolonged displacement of villagers in northern Luthaw who continue to actively seek to avoid contact with government troops due to ongoing attacks against civilian objects. The villager who wrote this report raised concerns about food shortages in hiding site areas where the presence of Tatmadaw soldiers proximate to previously cultivated land has resulted in overcrowding on available farmland and the subsequent degradation of soil quality, severely limiting villagers' abilities to support themselves using traditional rotational cropping methods. For detailed analysis of the humanitarian situation in this area of Luthaw Township, see the previous KHRG report Acute food shortages threatening 8,885 villagers in 118 villages across northern Papun District, published in April 2011."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
      Format/size: pdf (274K)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b3.html
      Date of entry/update: 18 January 2012


      Title: Papun Situation Update: Bu Tho Township, August 2011
      Date of publication: 06 October 2011
      Description/subject: "This report includes a situation update submitted to KHRG in August 2011 by a villager describing events occurring in Papun District in January 2011 and human rights consequences for local communities. It contains updated information concerning Tatmadaw military activities and details the following human rights abuses: coordinated attacks on villages by Tatmadaw and Border Guard troops and the firing of mortars and small arms in civilian areas, resulting in displacement of the civilian population and the closure of two schools; the use of landmines by the Tatmadaw and non-state armed groups; and forced portering for the Tatmadaw and Tatmadaw Border Guards. The report also mentions government plans for a logging venture and the construction of a dam. Moreover, it documents villagers’ responses to human rights concerns, including strategic displacement to avoid attacks and forced labour entailing physical security risks to civilians; advance preparation for strategic displacement in the event of Tatmadaw attacks; and seeking the protection of non-state armed groups against Tatmadaw attacks and other human rights threats."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
      Format/size: pdf (266K), html
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2011/khrg11b35.html
      Date of entry/update: 31 January 2012


      Title: Tenasserim Interview: Saw T---, December 2010
      Date of publication: 05 October 2011
      Description/subject: "This report contains the full transcript of an interview conducted in December 2010 in Te Naw Th’Ri Township, Tenasserim Division by a villager trained by KHRG to monitor human rights conditions. The villager interviewed Saw T---, a 59-year-old village head who, at the time of interview, was in hiding from Tatmadaw troops in an area of Tenasserim Division beyond government control. Excerpts from Saw T---’s interview with KHRG have been published in the previous KHRG field report “Militarization, Development and Displacement: Conditions for villagers in southern Tenasserim Division” however, the full transcript of his testimony is now available below. Saw T--- described witnessing attacks on villagers by Tatmadaw soldiers and cited regular demands for villagers to serve as forced porters for the Tatmadaw and other forms of forced labour as one of the main factors which originally motivated him to go into hiding. Saw T--- explained that villagers in hiding employ a range of strategies to avoid Tatmadaw forces, including coordinating security strategies and sharing information with villagers at other hiding sites, maintaining contact with and seeking protection from non-state armed groups, cultivating crops that are easy to harvest quickly, travelling covertly to villages in mixed-administration areas in order to engage in trade and other livelihoods activities, and crossing vehicle roads during the night."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
      Format/size: pdf (158K)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2011/khrg11b34.html
      Date of entry/update: 31 January 2012


      Title: Tenasserim Interview: Saw K---, August 2011
      Date of publication: 15 September 2011
      Description/subject: "This report contains the full transcript of an interview conducted by a KHRG researcher in August 2011. The KHRG researcher interviewed Saw K---, a 30-year-old medic with the Backpack Health Worker Team (BPHWT), an organisation that provides health care and medical assistance to displaced civilians inside Burma. Saw K--- described witnessing a joint attack by Tatmadaw soldiers from three different battalions on a civilian settlement in Ma No Roh village tract, Te Naw Th'Ri Township, Tenasserim Division in January 2011. Saw K--- reported that mortars were fired into P--- village, causing residents and Saw K---, who was providing healthcare support in P--- village at that time, to flee. Saw K--- reported that Tatmadaw soldiers subsequently entered P--- village and burned down 17 houses, as well as rice barns and food stores belonging to villagers, before planting landmines in the village. According to Saw K---, the residents of P--- have not returned to their homes, and have been unable to coordinate to restart the school that was abandoned in P--- because most households now live at dispersed sites in the area."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
      Format/size: pdf (150K), html
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2011/khrg11b30.html
      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: The world's longest ongoing war (video)
      Date of publication: 11 August 2011
      Description/subject: "For more than 60 years, Karen rebels have been fighting a civil war against the government of Myanmar...In February 1949, members of the Karen ethnic minority launched an armed insurrection against Myanmar's central government. In pictures: Sixty years of war. Over 60 years later, the conflict continues, with more than a dozen ethnic rebel groups waging war against the army in their fight for self-rule. Now, the war is entering a new and bloody stage. Myanmar is the only regime still regularly planting anti-personnel mines. But it is not only the army that uses them. Rebel groups also regularly use homemade landmines or mines seized from the military. As the conflict escalates, civilians are trapped in the middle of some of the worst fighting in decades. 101 East travels to Myanmar, home to the world's longest running civil war."
      Language: English, Karen (English sub-titles)
      Source/publisher: Al Jazeera (101 East)
      Format/size: html, Adobe Flash (25 minutes)
      Date of entry/update: 27 December 2011


      Title: Dooplaya Interview: U Sa---, July 2011
      Date of publication: 22 July 2011
      Description/subject: "This report contains the full transcript of an interview conducted by a KHRG researcher in July 2011 with a villager from Kawkareik Township, Dooplaya District. The researcher interviewed U Sa---, who described how his family and other residents of Pa--- village faced threats and abuses from Tatmadaw soldiers after local DKBA forces captured a Tatmadaw soldier at his home on June 15th 2011. U Sa--- described the following abuses: threats to burn or shell civilian areas; shelling of civilian areas; indiscriminate use of small arms in civilian areas; the taking of civilians as hostages; threats to kill civilians; and the imposition of movement restrictions, including threats to shoot villagers violating restrictions on sight. U Sa--- explained that he and his family fled Pa--- on June 16th to avoid these threats; as of July 3rd, they did not yet feel safe to return to their home. This interview was conducted by a KHRG researcher in July 2011; other details on the situation in Pa--- village after June 15th, including a general situation update, one incident report, and three photographs were submitted by a different KHRG researcher in June and July 2011."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
      Format/size: pdf (322K)
      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: Three villagers killed, eight injured during fighting in Kyaikdon area
      Date of publication: 17 May 2011
      Description/subject: "Research submitted by a KHRG field researcher indicates that fighting between DKBA and Tatmadaw troops between April 22nd and April 30th 2011 in Kya In Township has left at least three civilians dead and eight injured. The indiscriminate firing of mortars and small arms in civilian areas by armed groups involved in the conflict, and conflict related abuse including an explicit threat by Tatmadaw forces to burn civilians' homes, caused at least 143 villagers from Gkyaw Hta, Khoh Htoh, T'Aye Shay and Mae Naw Ah villages to seek refuge in the Ra--- area of Thailand between April 22nd and 30th 2011. As of May 13th 2011, KHRG confirmed that the firing of mortars and small arms was ongoing in the areas of K'Lay Kee and Noh Taw Plah, and that some villagers continued to seek refuge at discreet locations in Thailand."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
      Format/size: pdf (503K)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2011/khrg11b6.html
      Date of entry/update: 27 February 2012


      Title: Acute food shortages threatening 8,885 villagers in 118 villages across northern Papun District
      Date of publication: 11 May 2011
      Description/subject: "At least 8,885 villagers in 118 villages in Lu Thaw Township, Papun District have either exhausted their current food supplies or are expecting to do so prior to the October 2011 harvest. The 118 villages are located in nine village tracts, where attacks on civilians by Burma's state army, the Tatmadaw, have triggered wide scale and repeated displacement since 1997. As tens of thousands of civilians in northern Karen State have been displaced, over-population in hiding areas where civilians can more effectively avoid attacks has created shortages of arable land, depleted soil fertility and reduced potential crop yields. Civilians forced to cultivate land or live near Tatmadaw camps, meanwhile, have faced recent attacks, including indiscriminate shelling and attacks on food supplies, buildings and livelihoods. These existing obstacles to food security were compounded by an unusually dry rainy season in 2010, coupled with other environmental factors, causing the 2010 harvest to fail. The impact of acute food shortages on the civilian population is magnified by budgetary constraints of local relief organisations, which can access the affected area but are currently unable to provide emergency assistance to many of those facing food shortages. This regional report is based on research conducted by KHRG researchers in Lu Thaw Township in February and March 2011, including 41 interviews with villagers and village and village tract leaders in the affected areas. This research was augmented by interviews with members of local relief organisations in February, March and April 2011."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
      Format/size: pdf (1.31MB), html
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2011/khrg1101.html
      http://www.khrg.org/khrg2011/khrg1101%20-%20Briefer.pdf
      Date of entry/update: 27 February 2012


      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: 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: Human rights abuses and obstacles to protection: Conditions for civilians amidst ongoing conflict in Dooplaya and Pa'an districts
      Date of publication: 21 January 2011
      Description/subject: "Amidst ongoing conflict between the Tatmadaw and armed groups in eastern Dooplaya and Pa'an districts, civilians, aid workers and soldiers from state and non-state armies continue to report a variety of human rights abuses and security concerns for civilians in areas adjacent to Thailand's Tak Province, including: functionally indiscriminate mortar and small arms fire; landmines; arbitrary arrest and detention; sexual violence; and forced portering. Conflict and these conflict-related abuses have displaced thousands of civilians, more than 8,000 of whom are currently taking refuge in discreet hiding places in Thailand. This has interrupted education for thousands of children across eastern Dooplaya and Pa'an districts. The agricultural cycle for farmers has also been severely disrupted; many villagers have been prevented from completing their harvests of beans, corn and paddy crops, portending long-term threats to food security. Due to concerns about food security and disruption to children's education, as well as villagers' continuing need to protect themselves and their families from conflict and conflict-related abuse, temporary but consistent access to refuge in Thailand remains vital until villagers feel safe to return home. Even after return, food support will likely be necessary until disrupted agricultural activities can be resumed and civilians can again support themselves."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
      Format/size: pdf (Main text, 688K; Appendix 188K), html
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2011/khrg11f2_appendixes.pdf (Appendix)
      http://www.khrg.org/khrg2011/khrg11f2.html
      Date of entry/update: 26 February 2012


      Title: Villagers flee to avoid fighting and portering: Conflict continues to impact civilians in Dooplaya District
      Date of publication: 04 December 2010
      Description/subject: "Civilians in Dooplaya District continue to be impacted by conflict between the Tatmadaw and armed Karen groups, who have increased fighting in the area since November 7th 2010. The situation around Palu village remains highly unstable; in order to avoid conflict and conflict-related abuse, civilians are moving frequently between their homes and fields, more secure locations outside the village and along the Moei River, and both official and unofficial locations in Thailand's Phop Phra District. Residents of the community have told KHRG that they believe male villagers face a serious threat of being forcibly recruited as porters to support re-supply operations of Tatmadaw units deployed in the area, and that men in Palu are actively avoiding encountering Tatmadaw troops."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
      Format/size: pdf (494K), html
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2010/khrg10b16.html
      Date of entry/update: 19 February 2012


      Title: Diagnosis: Critical – Health And Human Rights in Eastern Burma
      Date of publication: 19 October 2010
      Description/subject: Executive Summary: "This report reveals that the health of populations in conflict-affected areas of eastern Burma, particularly women and children, is amongst the worst in the world, a result of official disinvestment in health, protracted conflict and the abuse of civilians..."Diagnosis: Critical" demonstrates that a vast area of eastern Burma remains in a chronic health emergency, a continuing legacy of longstanding official disinvestment in health, coupled with protracted civil war and the abuse of civilians. This has left ethnic rural populations in the east with 41.2% of children under five acutely malnourished. 60.0% of deaths in children under the age of 5 are from preventable and treatable diseases, including acute respiratory infection, malaria, and diarrhea. These losses of life would be even greater if it were not for local community-based health organizations, which provide the only available preventive and curative care in these conflict-affected areas. The report summarizes the results of a large scale population-based health and human rights survey which covered 21 townships and 5,754 households in conflict-affected zones of eastern Burma. The survey was jointly conducted by the Burma Medical Association, National Health and Education Committee, Back Pack Health Worker Team and ethnic health organizations serving the Karen, Karenni, Mon, Shan, and Palaung communities. These areas have been burdened by decades of civil conflict and attendant human rights abuses against the indigenous populations. Eastern Burma demographics are characterized by high birth rates, high death rates and the significant absence of men under the age of 45, patterns more comparable to recent war zones such as Sierra Leone than to Burma’s national demographics. Health indicators for these communities, particularly for women and children, are worse than Burma’s official national figures, which are already amongst the worst in the world. Child mortality rates are nearly twice as high in eastern Burma and the maternal mortality ratio is triple the official national figure. While violence is endemic in these conflict zones, direct losses of life from violence account for only 2.3% of deaths. The indirect health impacts of the conflict are much graver, with preventable losses of life accounting for 59.1% of all deaths and malaria alone accounting for 24.7%. At the time of the survey, one in 14 women was infected with Pf malaria, amongst the highest rates of infection in the world. This reality casts serious doubts over official claims of progress towards reaching the country’s Millennium Development Goals related to the health of women, children, and infectious diseases, particularly malaria. The survey findings also reveal widespread human rights abuses against ethnic civilians. Among surveyed households, 30.6% had experienced human rights violations in the prior year, including forced labor, forced displacement, and the destruction and seizure of food. The frequency and pattern with which these abuses occur against indigenous peoples provide further evidence of the need for a Commission of Inquiry into Crimes against Humanity. The upcoming election will do little to alleviate the situation, as the military forces responsible for these abuses will continue to operate outside civilian control according to the new constitution. The findings also indicate that these abuses are linked to adverse population-level health outcomes, particularly for the most vulnerable members of the community—mothers and children. Survey results reveal that members of households who suffer from human rights violations have worse health outcomes, as summarized in the table above. Children in households that were internally displaced in the prior year were 3.3 times more likely to suffer from moderate or severe acute malnutrition. The odds of dying before age one was increased 2.5 times among infants from households in which at least one person was forced to provide labor. The ongoing widespread human rights abuses committed against ethnic civilians and the blockade of international humanitarian access to rural conflict-affected areas of eastern Burma by the ruling State Peace and Development Council (SPDC), mean that premature death and disability, particularly as a result of treatable and preventable diseases like malaria, diarrhea, and respiratory infections, will continue. This will not only further devastate the health of communities of eastern Burma but also poses a direct health security threat to Burma’s neighbors, especially Thailand, where the highest rates of malaria occur on the Burma border. Multi-drug resistant malaria, extensively drug-resistant tuberculosis and other infectious diseases are growing concerns. The spread of malaria resistant to artemisinin, the most important anti-malarial drug, would be a regional and global disaster. In the absence of state-supported health infrastructure, local community-based organizations are working to improve access to health services in their own communities. These programs currently have a target population of over 376,000 people in eastern Burma and in 2009 treated nearly 40,000 cases of malaria and have vastly increased access to key maternal and child health interventions. However, they continue to be constrained by a lack of resources and ongoing human rights abuses by the Burmese military regime against civilians. In order to fully address the urgent health needs of eastern Burma, the underlying abuses fueling the health crisis need to end."
      Language: Burmese, English, Thai
      Source/publisher: The Burma Medical Association, National Health and Education Committee, Back Pack Health Worker Team
      Format/size: pdf (OBL versions: 5.3MB - English; 4.4MB Thai; 3.5MB-Burmese) . Larger, original versions on BPHWT site
      Alternate URLs: http://www.burmalibrary.org/docs11/Diagnosis_critical(th)-red.pdf
      http://www.burmalibrary.org/docs11/Diagnosis_critical(bu)-red.pdf
      http://www.backpackteam.org/?page_id=208
      Date of entry/update: 05 September 2011


      Title: DKBA burns village and forces residents to relocate in Pa'an District
      Date of publication: 04 June 2010
      Description/subject: DKBA soldiers in Dta Greh Township, Pa'an District, have burnt the small village of Gk'Law Lu and forced its residents to relocate. This incident is the second time Gk'Law Lu has been burnt and relocated by DKBA soldiers: the village was first burnt and residents forcibly relocated in October 2008. Relocated families, meanwhile, may face serious threats to their livelihoods if potential DKBA travel restrictions and risks from landmines limit access to farm fields in their home village.
      Language: English, Karen
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG #2010-B9)
      Format/size: pdf (428K - English version; 501K - Karen version)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/reports/karenlanguage/khrg10b9_karen_language.pdf
      Date of entry/update: 10 October 2010


      Title: Attacks and displacement in Nyaunglebin District
      Date of publication: 09 April 2010
      Description/subject: "At least 2,000 villagers have been displaced by SPDC Army attacks on villages in northern and central Kyauk Kyi Township, Nyaunglebin District. At least four villagers have been killed, while abandoned villages have been burned, including one clinic. More than ten schools have also been abandoned, disrupting students during their exam period. SPDC Army battalions conducted resupply operations at the end of February and KHRG field researchers predict attacks will soon resume."
      Language: English, Karen
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG #2010-B6)
      Format/size: pdf (524K - English; 1040K - Karen; 312K - Appendix)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/reports/karenlanguage/khrg10b6_karen_language.pdf
      http://www.khrg.org/khrg2010/khrg10b6_Appendix.pdf
      Date of entry/update: 13 October 2010


      Title: Attacks on displaced villagers in Nyaunglebin District
      Date of publication: 22 January 2010
      Description/subject: "On January 17th 2010 the State Peace and Development Council (SPDC) Army set up a camp at Kheh Der village tract, Kyauk Kyi Township, Nyaunglebin District. At least 1,000 residents of the ten villages that made up Khe Der tract have fled to avoid attack.[1] KHRG has also confirmed that these SPDC troops have killed two villagers, including a village head, from Kheh Der..." "At least 1,000 villagers have fled from ten villages during the last five days following the establishment of a new SPDC Army camp in central Nyaunglebin District. Two villagers in the area of the camp are confirmed to have been killed by soldiers from this camp. Three other villagers are missing after another SPDC battalion attacked a party of villagers that had escaped from an SPDC relocation site to tend to their farms..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG #2010 B-1)
      Format/size: pdf (492 KB)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2010/khrg10b1.html
      Date of entry/update: 24 March 2010


      Title: Life in Burma’s Relocation Sites
      Date of publication: January 2010
      Description/subject: Abstract: :Widespread human rights violations have been occurring in ethnic areas of Burma since the late nineteen sixties. This report, based on a 2008/9 field survey, focuses on the government’s use of mass displacement and relocation designed to destabilize the ethnic populations of Karen State. The government first initiated a policy of ethnic relocation in Karen State in 1975 as part of what became known as the four cuts campaign, a policy intended to deprive the ethnic resistance movement of food, money, intelligence and recruits. While noting the existence of such earlier camps, this report specifically examines the lives of people living in sites after a further concerted effort to control the civilian population was initiated in 2006. This report identifies three types of site created by the military regime. The first, roughly translated from Burmese as ‘model’ villages, are some of the most recent examples and have been created under the guise of development; the second type, initiated in 1979, are primarily security driven and have resulted in highland villages being relocated to the plains; the third, which are also security initiated and mainly located in Taungoo, consists of villages cleared from areas of military infrastructure. Villagers in this latter type, unlike the previous two, have been given no provision for relocation; rather, the population was told to vacate the area with little regard as to where they would go. Relocated villagers, despite the fact that purported contact with resistance forces has all but been eradicated, continue to face severe abuses by Burmese authorities. Forced labour on infrastructure projects and military controlled business is widespread. Villagers are ordered to act as sentries, messengers, porters and minesweepers by the Burma Army. Corruption and illegal taxation is prevalent in all the sites assessed. In addition, the opportunity for making a living has been drastically reduced. Malnutrition, especially in infants, has increased and is exacerbated by army restrictions that prevent villagers from access to food, medicine and education. This report identifies serious issues of concern that continue to affect the ethnic populations of Burma. It highlights the government’s disregard for the rights of its people and its blatant use of the local population as little more than a captive workforce to be used as the military dictates."
      Author/creator: Paul Keenan
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Ethnic Nationalities Council
      Format/size: pdf (3.6MB)
      Date of entry/update: 03 August 2010


      Title: Finding Food in Fear/Living in Fear (video)
      Date of publication: 2010
      Description/subject: Finding Food in Fear/Living in Fear Introduction for ‘one family’.... In February 2010, Burma Issues conducted a field trip inside Karen State to raise internally displaced persons’ (IDPs) awareness of the upcoming elections. While they were watching a video, the township where the IDPs were staying was attacked by the Burmese army. They had to flee into the jungle and our cameraman decided to follow. He became particularly interested in one family – a grandmother, 2 parents and 4 young children – who have endured permanent displacement for 3 generations. For 4 months he became deeply involved with them and managed to film an intimate portrait of their daily struggles. He then returned after a period of time to assess if their lives had improved. They hadn’t. As the family had to leave all of their possessions behind their life is now a cyclical nightmare. Every time they manage to build a hut for shelter, or manage to plant a basic crop, they have to flee from violence. Soldiers and landmines ensure that returning is out of the question. They manage to keep on building new shelters but never manage to make a home. Although shot in eastern Burma, this video highlights the plight of the countless millions of IDPs across the country who have to contend with extreme violence, food shortages and a lack of access to health care and education."
      Language: Karen (English sub-titles)
      Source/publisher: Burma Issues
      Format/size: Adobe Flash (duration 4 minutes 43 seconds)
      Date of entry/update: 04 October 2011


      Title: Living conditions for displaced villagers and ongoing abuses in Tenasserim Division
      Date of publication: 29 October 2009
      Description/subject: "Villagers in SPDC-controlled parts of Tenasserim Division, including 60 villages forced to move to government relocation sites in 1996, continue to face abuses including movement restrictions, forced labour and arbitrary demands for 'taxation' and other payments. In response, thousands of villagers continue to evade SPDC control in upland jungle areas. These villagers report that they are pursued by Burma Army patrols, which shoot them on sight, plant landmines and destroy paddy fields and food stores. This report primarily draws on information from September 2009. Because KHRG has not released a field report on the region since 2001, this report also includes quotes and photographs from research dating back to 2007..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Field Reports (KHRG #2009-F19)
      Format/size: pdf (359 KB)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2009/khrg09f19.html
      Date of entry/update: 11 November 2009


      Title: Starving them out: Food shortages and exploitative abuse in Papun District
      Date of publication: 15 October 2009
      Description/subject: "As the 2009 rainy season draws to a close, displaced villagers in northern Papun District's Lu Thaw Township face little prospect of harvesting sufficient paddy to support them over the next year. After four straight agricultural cycles disrupted by Burma Army patrols, which continue to shoot villagers on sight and enforce travel and trade restrictions designed to limit sale of food to villagers in hiding, villagers in northern Papun face food shortages more severe than anything to hit the area since the Burma Army began attempts to consolidate control of the region in 1997. Consequently, the international donor community should immediately provide emergency support to aid groups that can access IDP areas in Lu Thaw Township. In southern Papun, meanwhile, villagers report ongoing abuses and increased activity by the SPDC and DKBA in Dwe Loh and Bu Thoh townships. In these areas, villagers report abuses including movement restrictions, forced labour, looting, increased placement of landmines in civilian areas, summary executions and other forms of arbitrary abuse. This report documents abuses occurring between May and October 2009..."
      Language: English, Karen
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG #2009-F18)
      Format/size: pdf (861 KB)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2009/khrg09f18.html
      http://www.khrg.org/reports/karenlanguage/khrg09f18_karen_language.pdf
      Date of entry/update: 24 October 2009


      Title: Abuse, Poverty and Migration: Investigating migrants' motivations to leave home in Burma
      Date of publication: 10 July 2009
      Description/subject: "International reporting of the large-scale migration of those leaving Burma in search of work abroad has highlighted the perils for migrant during travel and in host countries. However, there has been a lack of research in the root causes of this migration. Identifying the root causes of migration has important implications for the assistance and protection of these migrants. Drawing on over 150 interviews with villagers in rural Burma and those from Burma who have sought employment abroad, this report identifies the exploitative abuse underpinning poverty and livelihoods vulnerability in Burma which, in turn, are major factors motivating individuals to leave home and seek work abroad..." _Thailand-based interviewees explained to KHRG how exploitative abuses increased poverty, livelihoods vulnerability and food insecurity for themselves and their communities in Burma. These issues were in turn cited as central push factors compelling them to leave their homes and search for work abroad. In some cases, interviewees explained that the harmful effects of exploitative abuse were compounded by environmental and economic factors such as flood and drought and limited access to decent wage labour.[17] While the individuals interviewed by KHRG in Thailand would normally be classified as 'economic migrants', the factors which they cited as motivating their choice to migrate make it clear that SPDC abuse made it difficult for them to survive in their home areas. Hence, these people decided to become migrants not simply because they were lured to Thailand by economic incentives, but because they found it impossible to survive at home in Burma. Clearly, the distinction between push and pull factors is blurred in the case of Burmese migrants. The concept of pull factors for migrants is further complicated because migrants are not merely seeking better jobs abroad, but are instead pulled to places like Thailand and Malaysia in order to access protection. For refugees and IDPs, protection is a service that is often provided by government bodies, UN agencies and international NGOs. For refugees in particular, protection is often primarily understood to mean legal protection against refoulement - defined as the expulsion of a person to a place where they would face persecution. Beyond legal protection against refoulement, aid agencies have implemented specific forms of rights-based assistance, such as gender-based violence programmes, as part of their protection mandates. However, for migrants from Burma the act of leaving home is overwhelmingly a self-initiated protection strategy through which individuals can ensure their and their families' basic survival in the face of persistent exploitative and other abuse in their home areas. This broader understanding of protection goes beyond legal protection against refoulement and the top-down delivery of rights-based assistance by aid agencies. It involves actions taken by individuals on their own accord to lessen or avoid abuse and its harmful effects at home.[18] KHRG has chosen to use the term self-initiated protection strategy, rather than a more generic concept like 'survival strategy', in order to highlight the political agency of those who choose such migration. By seeing this protection in political terms, one can better understand both the abusive underpinnings of migration from Burma as well as the relevance of such migration to the protection mandates of governments, UN agencies and international NGOs currently providing support to conventional refugee populations. Understanding protection in this way presents opportunities for external support for the many self-initiated protection strategies (including efforts to secure employment without exploitation, support dependent family members, enrol children in school and avoid arrest, extortion and deportation) which migrant workers regularly use._
      Language: English, Burmese, Thai
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Regional & Thematic Reports (KHRG #2009-03)
      Format/size: pdf (English Version: 2.6 MB), (Burmese Version: 383 KB, Thai version 991K)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2009/khrg0903.html
      http://www.khrg.org/khrg2009/KHRG%20Migrant%20report-Thai%20translation.pdf
      http://www.khrg.org/khrg2009/khrg0903_burmese_lang.pdf
      Date of entry/update: 11 November 2009


      Title: Exploitation and recruitment under the DKBA in Pa'an District
      Date of publication: 29 June 2009
      Description/subject: "While recent media attention has focused on the joint SPDC/DKBA attacks on the KNLA in Pa'an District and the dramatic exodus of at least 3,000 refugees from the area of Ler Per Her IDP camp into Thailand, the daily grind of exploitative treatment by DKBA forces continues to occur across the region. This report presents a breakdown of DKBA Brigade #999 battalions, some recent cases of exploitative abuse by this unit in Pa'an District and a brief overview of the group's transformation into a Border Guard Force as part of the SPDC's planned 2010-election process, in which the DKBA has sought to significantly expand its numbers. Amongst those forcibly recruited for this transformation process was a 17-year-old child soldier injured in the fighting at Ler Per Her, whose testimony is included here..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Field Reports (KHRG #2009-F11)
      Format/size: pdf (549 KB)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2009/khrg09f11.html
      Date of entry/update: 30 October 2009


      Title: IDP conditions and the rape of a young girl in Papun District
      Date of publication: 11 April 2009
      Description/subject: "This report describes SPDC operations in and around internally displaced person hiding sites in Lu Thaw Township, Papun District. Villagers in this area continue to face constant physical threats and food insecurity caused by SPDC patrols-indeed, residents have been prevented from consistently accessing their farm fields for so long that they now face a dire food crisis. This report also details the rape of a 13-year-old girl by an SPDC soldier in Dweh Loh Township and the local military commander's attempt to cover up the incident. This report examines cases of SPDC abuse from December 2008 to March 2009..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Field Reports (KHRG #2009-F8)
      Format/size: pdf (881 KB)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2009/khrg09f8.html
      Date of entry/update: 31 October 2009


      Title: IDP responses to food shortages in Nyaunglebin District
      Date of publication: 10 April 2009
      Description/subject: "Since the beginning of 2009, SPDC troops have patrolled areas near displaced hiding sites in Nyaunglebin District. These patrols prevent displaced villagers from cultivating their secret crops or otherwise accessing food, which in turn exacerbates food insecurity for these civilians. Despite such hardships, villagers have responded by cooperating with each other-often sharing food or helping each other cultivate crops and sell goods in 'jungle markets'. This report describes the situation of displaced villagers in Nyaunglebin District from December 2008 to March 2009..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Field Reports (KHRG #2009-F7)
      Format/size: pdf (881 KB)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2009/khrg09f7.html
      Date of entry/update: 31 October 2009


      Title: The Karen struggle (Video)
      Date of publication: 21 February 2009
      Description/subject: Untold stories in Myanmar obscured by the catastrophic Cyclone Nargis...based on a media trip organised by Burma Campaign UK
      Author/creator: Simon Ostrovsky (Director)
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Al-Jazeera (Listening Post) via Youtube
      Format/size: Adobe Flash (9 minutes, 52 seconds)
      Date of entry/update: 23 February 2009


      Title: Attacks, killings and the food crisis in Papun District
      Date of publication: 04 February 2009
      Description/subject: "SPDC abuses against civilians continue in northern Karen State, especially in the Lu Thaw and Dweh Loh townships of Papun District. Abuses have been particularly harsh in Lu Thaw, most of which has been designated a "black area" by the SPDC and so subject to constant attacks by Burma Army forces. Villagers who decide to remain in their home areas are often forced to live in hiding and not only face constant threats of violence by the SPDC, but also a worsening food crisis due to the SPDC's disruption of planting cycles. This report covers events in Papun District from August 2008 to January 2009..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Field Reports (KHRG #2009-F2)
      Format/size: pdf (578 KB)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2009/khrg09f2.html
      Date of entry/update: 31 October 2009


      Title: Cycles of Displacement: Forced relocation and civilian responses in Nyaunglebin District
      Date of publication: 12 January 2009
      Description/subject: "Over the past three years, the Burma Army has conducted an extensive forced relocation campaign in Nyaunglebin District. As part of the wider offensive in northern Karen State, the forced relocations in Nyaunglebin District have aimed to bring the region's entire civilian population into more easily controllable settlements in the plains, along vehicle roads and alongside army camps and bases. Local villagers, however, have resisted these efforts in numerous ways. Villagers' resistance strategies include: fleeing into hiding to evade forced relocation; negotiating with local SPDC commanders to avoid relocation or garner increased freedom of movement at relocation sites; and covertly leaving relocation sites to temporarily or permanently return to their former homes and lands. The Burma Army's attacks against civilian communities in hiding, combined with forced relocation efforts and civilian evasion in Nyaunglebin District, have created ongoing cycles of displacement..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Regional & Thematic Reports (KHRG #2009-01)
      Format/size: pdf (6.1 MB)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2009/khrg0901.html
      Date of entry/update: 11 November 2009


      Title: The “Everyday Politics” of IDP Protection in Karen State
      Date of publication: 2009
      Description/subject: Abstract: "While international humanitarian access in Burma has opened up over the past decade and a half, the ongoing debate regarding the appropriate relationship between politics and humanitarian assistance remains unresolved. This debate has become especially limiting in regards to protection measures for internally displaced persons (IDPs) which are increasingly seen to fall within the mandate of humanitarian agencies. Conventional IDP protection frameworks are biased towards a top-down model of politicallyaverse intervention which marginalises local initiatives to resist abuse and hinders local control over protection efforts. Yet such local resistance strategies remain the most effective IDP protection measures currently employed in Karen State and other parts of rural Burma. Addressing the protection needs and underlying humanitarian concerns of displaced and potentially displaced people is thus inseparable from engagement with the “everyday politics” of rural villagers. This article seeks to challenge conventional notions of IDP protection that prioritise a form of state-centric “neutrality” and marginalise the “everyday politics” through which local villagers continue to resist abuse and claim their rights..."..... ISSN: 1868-4882 (online), ISSN: 1868-1034 (print)
      Author/creator: Stephen Hull
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Journal of Current Southeast Asian Affairs, 28, 2, 7-21.
      Format/size: pdf (124K)
      Date of entry/update: 21 August 2011


      Title: Human minesweeping and forced relocation as SPDC and DKBA step up joint operations in Pa'an District (English and Karen)
      Date of publication: 20 October 2008
      Description/subject: "Since the end of September 2008, SPDC and DKBA troops have begun preparing for what KHRG researchers expect to be a renewed offensive against KNU/KNLA-controlled areas in Pa'an District. These activities match a similar increase in joint SPDC-DKBA operations in Dooplaya District further south where these groups have conducted attacks against villagers and KNU/KNLA targets over the past couple of weeks. The SPDC and DKBA soldiers operating in Pa'an District have forced villagers to carry supplies, food and weapons for their combined armies and also to walk in front of their columns as human minesweepers. This report includes the case of two villagers killed by landmines during October while doing such forced labour, as well as the DKBA's forced relocation of villages in T'Moh village tract of Dta Greh township, demands for forced labourers from the relocated communities and the subsequent flight of relocated villagers to KNLA-controlled camps in Pa'an District as a means to escape this abuse; all of which took place in October 2008."
      Language: English, Karen
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
      Format/size: pdf (English, 534K; Karen, 446K), html
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/reports/karenlanguage/khrg08b11_karen_language.pdf
      http://www.khrg.org/khrg2008/khrg08b11.html
      Date of entry/update: 13 March 2012


      Title: Mortar attacks, landmines and the destruction of schools in Papun District
      Date of publication: 22 August 2008
      Description/subject: "SPDC abuses against civilians continue in northern Karen State, especially in Lu Thaw township of Papun District. Because these villagers live within non-SPDC-controlled "black areas", the SPDC believes it has justification to attack IDP hiding sites and destroy civilian crops, cattle and property. These attacks, combined with the SPDC and KNLA's continued use of landmines, have caused dozens of injuries and deaths in Papun District alone. Such attacks target the fabric of Karen society, breaking up communities and compromising the educations of Karen youth. In spite of these hardships, the local villagers continue to be resourceful in providing security for their families and education for their children. This report covers events in Papun District from May to July 2008..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Field Reports (KHRG #2008-F12)
      Format/size: pdf (687 KB)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2008/khrg08f12.html
      Date of entry/update: 01 November 2009


      Title: Attacks, killings and the food crisis in Toungoo District
      Date of publication: 01 August 2008
      Description/subject: "SPDC troops have continued to target internally displaced persons (IDPs) within Toungoo District. Civilians continue be killed or injured by the attacks while many of the survivors flee their homes and take shelter in forest hiding sites. Some who have moved into SPDC forced relocation sites continue to secretly return to their villages to cultivate their crops, constantly risking punishment or execution by troops patrolling the areas. The SPDC's repeated disruption of regular planting cycles has created a food crisis in Toungoo, further endangering the IDPs living there. This report examines the abuses in Toungoo District from April to June 2008..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Field Reports (KHRG #2008-F9)
      Format/size: pdf (880 KB)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2008/khrg08f9.html
      Date of entry/update: 01 November 2009


      Title: Attacks, forced labour and restrictions in Toungoo District
      Date of publication: 01 July 2008
      Description/subject: "While the rainy season is now underway in Karen state, Burma Army soldiers are continuing with military operations against civilian communities in Toungoo District. Local villagers in this area have had to leave their homes and agricultural land in order to escape into the jungle and avoid Burma Army attacks. These displaced villagers have, in turn, encountered health problems and food shortages, as medical supplies and services are restricted and regular relocation means any food supplies are limited to what can be carried on the villagers' backs alone. Yet these displaced communities have persisted in their effort to maintain their lives and dignity while on the run; building new shelters in hiding and seeking to address their livelihood and social needs despite constraints. Those remaining under military control, by contrast, face regular demands for forced labour, as well as other forms of extortion and arbitrary 'taxation'. This report examines military attacks, forced labour and movement restrictions and their implications in Toungoo District between March and June 2008..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Field Reports (KHRG #2008-F7)
      Format/size: pdf (880 KB)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2008/khrg08f7.html
      Date of entry/update: 01 November 2009


      Title: Burma Army attacks and civilian displacement in northern Papun District
      Date of publication: 12 June 2008
      Description/subject: "Following the deployment of new Burma Army units in the area of Htee Moo Kee village, Lu Thaw township of northern Karen State, Papun District, during the first week of March 2008, at least 1,600 villagers from seven villages were forced to relocate to eight different hiding sites in order to avoid the encroaching army patrols. These displaced communities are now facing heightened food insecurity and an ongoing risk of military attack. This report is based on in-depth interviews with displaced villagers from Lu Thaw township regarding the recent Burma Army operations and the resultant effects on the local communities. It also includes information on the recent military attack on Dtay Muh Der village, Lu Thaw township, Papun District which Burma Army forces conducted during the first week of June 2008 and which led to the further displacement of over 1,000 villagers..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Field Reports (KHRG #2008-F6)
      Format/size: pdf (537 KB)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2008/khrg08f6.html
      Date of entry/update: 01 November 2009


      Title: Supporting IDP resistance strategies
      Date of publication: 23 April 2008
      Description/subject: "...Whether in hiding or living under military control, displaced villagers of Karen State and other areas of rural Burma have shown themselves to be innovative and courageous in responding to and resisting military abuse. They urgently need increased assistance but it is they who should determine the direction of any such intervention. This article, co-authored by two KHRG staff members, appears in issue number 30 of the journal Forced Migration Review (FMR), issued in April 2008 and is available on both the KHRG and FMR websites..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Right Group Articles & Papers (KHRG #2008-W1)
      Format/size: pdf (109 KB)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2008/khrg08w1.html
      Date of entry/update: 25 November 2009


      Title: Village-level decision making in responding to forced relocation: A case from Papun District
      Date of publication: 07 March 2008
      Description/subject: "As part of its campaign of militarisation in Northern Karen State the SPDC has had as a principle strategy the forcible relocation of villagers from areas outside of its control to relocation sites close to Army camps or vehicle roads where civilian control can be firmly established. Over the years, villagers in Papun District and across Karen State have come to learn well that SPDC control means regular abuse and exploitation and, therefore, have sought to avoid such control wherever possible. This report presents one recent example from January to February 2008 of the courageous and varied response strategies villagers use to resist forced relocation and abuse and evade control by SPDC soldiers. Interestingly, this case also hints at some internal dissent and corruption within the SPDC ranks..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Field Report (KHRG #2008-F3)
      Format/size: pdf (650 KB)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2008/khrg08f3.html
      Date of entry/update: 07 November 2009


      Title: Militarisation, violence and exploitation in Toungoo District
      Date of publication: 15 February 2008
      Description/subject: "While the SPDC leadership proposes dates for a constitutional referendum and eventual multiparty elections it nonetheless continues without the slightest hesitation the violent subjugation of villagers in northern Karen State. The area of Toungoo District is now saturated with SPDC troops and the local civilian population living under military control as well as those living in hiding are facing constricting options for their lives. The SPDC has continued to increase the military build-up of the area deploying more troops, building new camps and bases and constructing and upgrading vehicle roads to facilitate troop deployment and the stocking of army camps. In this context attacks on villages, arbitrary detentions, killings, forced labour and extortion have continued consistent with the regime's policy of civilian subjugation and in opposition to its claims of a potential return to civilian rule through the current constitution-vetting process..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Field Report (KHRG #2008-F2)
      Format/size: pdf (1.1 MB)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2008/khrg08f2.html
      Date of entry/update: 07 November 2009


      Title: Attacks, killings and increased militarisation in Nyaunglebin District
      Date of publication: 11 January 2008
      Description/subject: "With the dry season in northern Karen State well under way, the SPDC continues to intensify its militarisation of the area. In Nyaunglebin District this intensification has come in the form of an increased troop build-up with the regime deploying new military units, establishing new camps and bases and attacking displaced civilian communities in hiding. Maintaining a shoot-on-sight policy SPDC soldiers operating in Nyaunglebin have shot and killed or otherwise severely injured displaced villagers and destroyed rice storage barns and civilian rice supplies across the district. In those areas more firmly under SPDC control, soldiers have ordered villagers to labour building army camps, porter mortar shells and army rations and repair SPDC-controlled vehicle roads in support of the region's growing military presence. This report looks at the human rights situation in Nyaunglebin District from October to December 2007..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Field Report (KHRG #2008-F1)
      Format/size: pdf (788 MB)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2008/khrg08f1.html
      Date of entry/update: 07 November 2009


      Title: Villagers risk arrest and execution to harvest their crops
      Date of publication: 04 December 2007
      Description/subject: "The months of November and December which follow the annual cessation of the rainy season mark the traditional harvest time for the agrarian communities of Karen State when villagers must venture out into their fields in order to reap their ripe paddy crops. Across large areas of Toungoo District, however, where the SPDC lacks a consolidated hold on the civilian population, this time of year has become especially perilous as the Army enforces sweeping movement restrictions backed up by a shoot on sight policy in order to eradicate the entire civilian presence in areas outside its control and restrict the population to military-controlled villages and relocation sites where they can be more easily exploited for labour, money, food and other supplies. Displaced communities in hiding thus risk potential arrest and execution by venturing out into the relatively open area of their hill side agricultural fields where they are more easily spotted by SPDC troops who regularly patrol the area. Yet, because of the Army's persistent attacks against covert farm fields, food stores and displaced communities in hiding these villagers confront a severe food shortage which has increased pressure on them to tend to their covert fields despite the risks. As a consequence some villagers have already lost their lives; having been shot by SPDC soldiers while attempting to tend their crops and address their community's rising food insecurity..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Field Report (KHRG #2007-F11)
      Format/size: pdf (817 MB)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2007/khrg07f11.html
      Date of entry/update: 07 November 2009


      Title: Born on the Run
      Date of publication: September 2007
      Description/subject: A photojournalist put aside his camera to comfort a young Karen woman at the birth of her son in a jungle hideout... "It was a makeshift village on the Thai side of the Moei River bordering Burma and Thailand, about 60 miles north of the Thai border town of Mae Sot. Around 100 Karen lived there, so-called “internally displaced persons,” refugees from the excesses committed by the Burmese army and the equally feared troops of the regime-backed Democratic Karen Buddhist Army..."
      Author/creator: Dai Kurokawa
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: "The Irrawaddy" Vol 15, No. 9
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 02 May 2008


      Title: Landmines, Killings and Food Destruction: Civilian life in Toungoo District
      Date of publication: 09 August 2007
      Description/subject: "The attacks against civilians continue as the SPDC increases its military build-up in Toungoo District. Enforcing widespread restrictions on movement backed up by a shoot-on-sight policy, the SPDC has executed at least 38 villagers in Toungoo since January 2007. On top of this, local villagers face the ever present danger of landmines, many of which were manufactured in China, which the Army has deployed around homes, churches and forest paths. Combined with the destruction of covert agricultural hill fields and rice supplies, these attacks seek to undermine food security and make life unbearable in areas outside of consolidated military control. However, as those living under SPDC rule have found, the constant stream of military demands for labour, money and other supplies undermine livelihoods, village economies and community efforts to address health, education and social needs. Civilians in Toungoo must therefore choose between a situation of impoverishment and subjugation under SPDC rule, evasion in forested hiding sites with the constant threat of military attack, or a relatively stable yet uprooted life in refugee camps away from their homeland. This report documents just some of the human rights abuses perpetrated by SPDC forces against villagers in Toungoo District up to July 2007..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Field Report (KHRG #2007-F6)
      Format/size: pdf (1.24 MB)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2007/khrg07f6.html
      Date of entry/update: 08 November 2009


      Title: Provoking Displacement in Toungoo District: Forced labour, restrictions and attacks
      Date of publication: 30 May 2007
      Description/subject: "The first half of 2007 has seen the continued flight of civilians from their homes and land in response to ongoing State Peace and Development Council (SPDC) military operations in Toungoo District. While in some cases this displacement is prompted by direct military attacks against their villages, many civilians living in Toungoo District have told KHRG that the primary catalyst for relocation has been the regular demands for labour, money and supplies and the restrictions on movement and trade imposed by SPDC forces. These everyday abuses combine over time to effectively undermine civilian livelihoods, exacerbate poverty and make subsistence untenable. Villagers threatened with such demands and restrictions frequently choose displacement in response - initially to forest hiding sites located nearby and then farther afield to larger Internally Displaced Person (IDP) camps or across the border to Thailand-based refugee camps. This report presents accounts of ongoing abuses in Toungoo District committed by SPDC forces during the period of January to May 2007 and their role in motivating local villagers to respond with flight and displacement..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Field Report (KHRG #2007-F4)
      Format/size: pdf (527 KB)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2007/khrg07f4.html
      Date of entry/update: 08 November 2009


      Title: Road construction, attacks on displaced communities and the impact on education in northern Papun District
      Date of publication: 26 March 2007
      Description/subject: "In the ongoing offensive against villagers in northern Karen State, the State Peace and Development Council (SPDC) has been working to develop infrastructure supportive of increased military control. The construction of new bases and vehicle roads serve this objective as they obstruct the efforts of local communities to evade army patrols and sustain their livelihoods in areas beyond the reach of SPDC forces. Increased control, in turn, allows the SPDC to more easily exploit rural communities for labour, food and other supplies in support of military structures. This report examines how military deployment and the construction of new roads and bases further into Papun District have led local villagers to respond by evading encroaching army units despite the increasing difficulty of this tactic, and how the subsequent displacement has affected children's access to education..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Field Report (KHRG #2007-F3)
      Format/size: pdf (806 KB)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2007/khrg07f3.html
      Date of entry/update: 08 November 2009


      Title: Bullets and Bulldozers: The SPDC offensive continues in Toungoo District
      Date of publication: 19 February 2007
      Description/subject: "The first two months of 2007 have done nothing to lessen the intensity of attacks against the villagers of Toungoo District. SPDC forces continue to send in more troops and supplies, build new camps and upgrade older ones using forced village labour, convict porters and heavy machinery brought in for this purpose. Local villagers have been the ones to suffer from the increased military build-up and infrastructure 'development' as such programmes have put the SPDC in a stronger position to enforce their authority over civilians in rural areas and undermine the efforts of local peoples to evade military forces and maintain their livelihoods. Employing the new roadways and camps to shuttle troops and supplies deeper into areas beyond military control, SPDC forces continue to expand their reach in terms of extortion of funds, food and supplies; extraction of forced labour; and restriction of all civilian movement, travel and trade. These abuses have combined to exacerbate poverty, worsen the humanitarian situation and restrict the options of villagers living in these areas..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Field Report (KHRG #2007-F1)
      Format/size: pdf (819 KB)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2007/khrg07f1.html
      Date of entry/update: 08 November 2009


      Title: Papun Update: SPDC attacks on villages continue
      Date of publication: 06 October 2006
      Description/subject: "As the rainy season nears its end, SPDC operations in northern Papun District persist. Civilians living in Lu Thaw township in northern Papun District who fled from military attacks on their villages earlier in the current offensive have been joined by those more recently displaced. So long as military forces remain active in the area of their abandoned homes, these villagers are unable to return to tend their crops, collect possessions and reclaim their land. In these situations of displacement, villagers confront daily food shortages, unhygienic conditions and the constant threat of detection by military forces. With the establishment of new army camps, the likely construction of more roads and a possible large-scale relocation site at Pwah Ghaw, the ability of displaced villagers to maintain their livelihood, evade military forces and retain some measure of control over their land is becoming highly restricted. Nevertheless, the threat of regular abuse and ceaseless demands in military-controlled areas prompt villagers living in hiding to continue to evade capture and military subjugation..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG #2006-F10)
      Format/size: pdf (671K), html
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2006/khrg06f10.html
      Date of entry/update: 06 October 2006


      Title: SPDC military begins pincer movement, adds new camps in Papun district
      Date of publication: 09 August 2006
      Description/subject: "KHRG continues to monitor the activities of large SPDC military columns which are systematically destroying villages in Papun, Nyaunglebin and Toungoo districts. We have just received information from a KHRG researcher in the field that in the past week SPDC Military Operations Command #15 has launched its expected pincer operation in northern Papun district, trying to catch Karen villagers between its Tactical Operations Command #2 coming from the south and Tactical Operations Command #3 coming from the north. These two large multi-battalion columns, with several hundred soldiers each, are attempting to force all villagers out of the hills west of the Yunzalin River (Bway Loh Kloh) in northern Papun district of Karen State. Tactical Operations Command #2 has pushed north from Naw Yo Hta and has now set up a new base at Baw Ka Plaw, just north of Kay Pu; while Tactical Operations Command #3 has approached the same area from the north, coming down from Bu Sah Kee and establishing themselves at a new camp at Si Day. This pincer movement and the establishment of these two new Army camps ensure that the hill villagers in the northern tip of Papun district will remain displaced for the coming months and will lose their entire rice harvest, creating serious concerns about their food security and survival over the coming year."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG #2006-B10)
      Format/size: html, pdf (459K)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2006/khrg06b10.pdf
      Date of entry/update: 12 August 2006


      Title: Forced Relocation, Restrictions and Abuses in Nyaunglebin District
      Date of publication: 10 July 2006
      Description/subject: "This report presents information on ongoing abuses in Nyaunglebin (Kler Lweh Htoo) District, Karen State committed by SPDC forces during the period of March to May 2006. Attacks on hill villagers have continued as SPDC units seek to depopulate the hills and force all villagers to relocate to military-controlled villages in the plains and along roadways. However, those villagers living in SPDC-controlled areas are subject as well to continued abuses including arbitrary arrest and detention, extortion, restricted movement and forced labour..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Field Report (KHRG #2006-F6)
      Format/size: pdf (645 KB)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2006/khrg06f6.html
      Date of entry/update: 09 November 2009


      Title: New SPDC military moves force more villagers to flee
      Date of publication: 04 July 2006
      Description/subject: "The SPDC is continuing its attacks on Karen hill villages throughout northern Karen State, trying to entirely depopulate the northern hills. SPDC columns have regrouped and resupplied and are now launching attacks into hill regions not previously reached by the offensive. If successful, this offensive threatens to completely annihilate the unique way of life and culture of the hill Karen, a distinct group within the Karen population, by either forcing them into relocation sites where they cannot practice their culture and livelihood, or simply killing them off and destroying all remnants of their existence..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
      Format/size: pdf (555K), html
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2006/khrg06b9.html
      Date of entry/update: 04 July 2006


      Title: Without Respite: Renewed Attacks on Villages and Internal Displacement in Toungoo District
      Date of publication: 12 June 2006
      Description/subject: "With the annual monsoon rains now falling over Karen State, the SPDC’s military offensive against civilian villagers in northern Karen State would normally be drawing to a close. However, quite the opposite is happening. The resumption of SPDC Army attacks on villages and the increased patrols in Toungoo District shows that the offensive is far from over. Thousands more landmines have been reportedly deployed across Toungoo District to isolate certain parts of the district and restrict villagers’ movements. An analysis of SPDC Army troop movements and tactics suggests that the offensive is now set to expand eastward across the Day Loh River where it can be expected that SPDC units will soon commence shelling and destroying villages. In addition to this, the situation in the southeast of the district has become dire as the villagers are now caught between two advancing columns and have nowhere left to flee. It is likely that dozens more villages will be destroyed and thousands more villagers will be displaced in the coming months. Civilian villagers living in Toungoo District (Taw Oo in Karen), the northernmost of the seven Karen districts in eastern Burma, have been under attack since November last year. In its latest military offensive against the civilian population, the State Peace and Development Council (SPDC) military junta has been targeting Karen villagers living in the hills of northern Karen State in the ongoing attempt to consolidate its control and bring the whole of the population under its rule. Over the past six months, thousands of villagers have been displaced and dozens of villages have been abandoned and/or destroyed. The wet season has now commenced, but the attacks show no sign of slowing down. Unlike in previous years, when offensive activities would cease with the onset of the rains, the SPDC has actually recently intensified its activities against Karen civilians in Toungoo District. The situation for the villagers is now growing increasingly desperate as more and more troops flood into the district to inflict wholesale human rights violations..."... Table of Contents: The Scope of Displacement: Implications for Health and Education; Increased Isolation of Villages in the Region; Examining the Motives behind the Offensive.
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG #2006-F5)
      Format/size: pdf (1.7MB), html (260K)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2006/khrg0602a.html
      Date of entry/update: 14 June 2006


      Title: Offensive columns shell and burn villages, round up villagers in northern Papun and Toungoo districts
      Date of publication: 07 June 2006
      Description/subject: "...SPDC troops in northern Papun district continue to escalate their attacks, shooting villagers, burning villages and destroying ricefields. Undefended villages in far northern Papun district are now being shelled with powerful 120mm mortars. Three battalions from Toungoo district have rounded up hundreds of villagers as porters and are detaining their families in schools in case they're needed; this column is now heading south with its porters, apparently intending to trap displaced villagers in a pincer between themselves and the troops coming north from Papun district. A similar trapping movement is being performed along the Bilin river, as 8 battalions come from two directions to wipe out every village in their path. Up to 4,000 villagers in Papun district's far north have been displaced in the past week, and 1,500 to 2,000 more along the Bilin River..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG #2006-B7)
      Format/size: html, pdf (800K)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2006/khrg06b7.pdf
      Date of entry/update: 08 June 2006


      Title: An Uncertain Fate
      Date of publication: June 2006
      Description/subject: A savage onslaught by the Burmese army in Karen State has displaced thousands and seriously undermined any government talk‑ about democratic reform... "Up to four families squash into half-finished bamboo structures of three or four rooms built into the side of a mountain. Those on the other side of the mountain still wait for suitable shelter. Under these thatched roofs, various cooking utensils lie scattered among tired, poorly clothed and underfed Karen refugees just arrived from northern and eastern Karen State in Burma. They were driven out of their homes by an aggressive campaign by the Burmese army, which targets civilians as well as armed ethnic rebels..."
      Author/creator: Shah Paung/Mae Ra Moo
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: "The Irrawaddy" Vol. 14, No. 6
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 29 December 2006


      Title: Rising Waters
      Date of publication: June 2006
      Description/subject: As thousands of displaced Karen fill temporary shelters along the Salween River in Burma, their plight has yet to mobilize the international community... "A large boat churns through the coffee-colored waters of the Salween River that separates Burma from Thailand. Sitting among plastic wrapped bundles of mosquito nets, tins of sardines, boxes of iron nails, plastic buckets, hammers and floor mats, a small chunky man stares at the fast-gathering rain clouds smothering the hot sun. “There are already 670 people in the camp and hundreds more on their way,” says Hla Henry. “If we don’t get shelters and clinics built before the heavy rains come, it will be a disaster.” He is the secretary for the Committee for Internally Displaced Karen People and says his job is to get help and support for Karen people forced from their homes by the Burmese army..."
      Author/creator: Phil Thornton
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: "The Irrawaddy" Vol. 14, No. 6
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 29 December 2006


      Title: Toungoo District: Update on the Dam on the Day Loh River
      Date of publication: 30 May 2006
      Description/subject: "...Over the past ten years the SPDC has undertaken numerous 'development projects' across Karen State, consistently claiming that these are purely for the good of the people. Such projects however are anything but, invariably bringing with them an increase in human rights violations in the area surrounding the development site. Villages are typically forcibly relocated and their inhabitants are used as forced labour. One such project is a hydroelectricity power plant that is to be built on the Day Loh River in Toungoo District. In 2005, KHRG examined the activities of 2,000 SPDC Army troops who moved into the region to secure the area surrounding the dam site. This report serves as an update of the dam situation, incorporating information which may be possible evidence of the complicity of foreign corporations, and explores the possibility that the imminent construction of this project and others like it are part of the motivation behind the current offensive underway in northern Karen State..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG #2006-B5)
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 31 May 2006


      Title: "We have hands the same as them": Struggles for local sovereignty and livelihoods by internally displaced Karen villagers in Burma
      Date of publication: 29 May 2006
      Description/subject: "...For the past thirty years hundreds of thousands of Karen villagers in Burma have been living a precarious existence, regularly moving between their villages and displacement in the forests or state-controlled relocation sites, struggling to retain access to their land and livelihoods against a military-run state determined to exert absolute control over their movements, their land, their cropping methods, their produce, and all other aspects of their lives. Outside attention on this situation tends to focus on the armed conflict between the Karen National Liberation Army (KNLA) and the state military junta, and concludes that this is a simple case of 'conflict-induced displacement' which requires a peace agreement between combatants and 'return' of displaced villagers with help from the state. This paper challenges this analysis. It examines the nature and dynamics of Karen internal displacement through perspectives expressed by villagers themselves, and finds it to be an ongoing and fluid process of villagers evading state control while attempting to retain access to their land and livelihoods, rather than a spatial displacement from zones of armed conflict. The primary cause of displacement is not armed conflict, but state efforts to consolidate territorial sovereignty over civilians who are used to local-level sovereignty and 'non-state' identities. Villagers respond with survival strategies which in themselves constitute resistance to state control of their land, livelihoods, and lives. These 'weapons of the weak' used by Karen villagers have arguably weakened the state more than all the battles fought by the armed resistance, and the state has responded with brutal campaigns against their villages. The 2004 ceasefire between the state and Karen armed forces, which the state has used to further penetrate and militarise Karen areas, has only created further displacement and has made this conflict more open and urgent. The paper argues that the solution to Karen internal displacement is not the 'return', 'reintegration' and state-directed aid espoused by the Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement and by some international actors, which would only represent victory for the state in this conflict; instead, it advocates recognising and supporting villagers' efforts to resist state control and retain local sovereignty over their lands and livelihoods. (This paper was presented at the Land, Poverty, Social Justice and Development conference in The Hague, The Netherlands in January 2006. It updates and refines the ideas presented in the earlier paper Sovereignty, Survival and Resistance: Contending Perspectives on Karen internal displacement in Burma [KHRG Working Paper #2005-W1])..." _A Paper for Presentation to the Workshop on ‘Urban Lands, Territoriality and Other Issues’, as part of the International Conference on Land, Poverty, Social Justice and Development_
      Author/creator: Kevin Heppner
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Right Group (KHRG Articles & Papers)
      Format/size: pdf (651 KB)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/papers/wp2006w1.htm
      Date of entry/update: 26 November 2009


      Title: Toungoo district: Civilians displaced by dams, roads, and military control
      Date of publication: 19 August 2005
      Description/subject: "...Burma’s State Peace and Development Council (SPDC) military junta claims to be implementing peace and development in Karen regions, but civilians in Toungoo District of northern Karen State say they are facing instead brutal treatment aimed at asserting military control. An example of SPDC-led ‘development’ is a new dam project on the Thauk Yay Ka (Day Loh) river in western Toungoo District. Villagers in the area of this proposed dam say that it has brought a new military access road to their area and that large SPDC military columns now patrol their villages, looting their belongings and forcing them into labour. Security checkpoints along all roads in the area have proliferated, restricting the movements of villagers and extorting heavy ‘taxes’ on all goods they try to take to market. Increased military presence along the roads has occurred throughout the district, from the Than Daung Gyi – Leit Tho road in the north to the Kler Lah – Bu Sah Kee road in the southeast, and close to 300 acres of villagers’ farmland has been confiscated for the establishment of a large military base at Leit Tho in the north. This continues the campaign of control already exposed in KHRG’s March 2005 report from the district (see ‘Peace’, or Control?, KHRG Report from the Field #2005-F3). SPDC troops burn farmfields and plantations adjacent to vehicle roads for military security, while destroying the villagers’ food security. People who have been forced from the hills into SPDC-controlled villages struggle against disease, food scarcity and restrictions on their movement, while those who have chosen to evade SPDC control in the hills must remain mobile to evade SPDC patrols who destroy their rice fields and landmine the pathways. In the relocation villages and in the forests, people are facing a difficult struggle against food scarcity, deteriorating health conditions, and SPDC human rights abuses..."...Dam security; Road security; New Army base at Leit Tho; Destruction of villages and livelihoods; Relocation sites and roadsides; Villagers in hiding; Health; Children and education
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG #2005-F7)
      Format/size: html, pdf (58K)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2005/khrg05f7.pdf (without maps)
      Date of entry/update: 20 August 2005


      Title: A Life in Hiding
      Date of publication: July 2005
      Description/subject: Karen Internally Displaced Persons wonder when they will be able to go home... "Sitting in his new bamboo hut in Ler Per Her camp for Internally Displaced Persons, located on the bank of Thailand’s Moei River near the border with Burma, Phar The Tai—a skinny, tough-looking man of 60 who used to hide in the jungles and mountains of Burma’s eastern Karen State—waits for the time when he can return home. “We are living in fear all the time,” he says about the lives of IDPs. His words reflect the general feeling among IDPs from Karen State, which has produced the largest number of displaced people in Burma..."
      Author/creator: Yeni
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: "The Irrawaddy" Vol. 13, No. 7
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 30 April 2006


      Title: "They Came and Destroyed Our Village Again"-- The Plight of Internally Displaced Persons in Karen State
      Date of publication: 09 June 2005
      Description/subject: "...While the nonviolent struggle of Daw Aung San Suu Kyi against the Burmese military government’s continuing repression has captured the world’s attention, the profound human rights and humanitarian crisis endured by Burma’s ethnic minority communities has largely been ignored.4 Decades of armed conflict have devastated ethnic minority communities, which make up approximately 35 percent of Burma’s population. The Burmese army, or Tatmadaw, has for many years carried out numerous and widespread summary executions, looting, torture, rape and other sexual violence, arbitrary arrests and torture, forced labor, recruitment of child soldiers, and the displacement and demolition of entire villages as part of military operations against ethnic minority armed opposition groups. Civilians bear the brunt of a state of almost perpetual conflict and militarization. Violations of international human rights and humanitarian law (the laws of war) by the Tatmadaw have been particularly acute in eastern Karen state, which runs along the northwestern border of Thailand...One result of the Tatmadaw’s brutal behavior has been the creation of large numbers of internally displaced persons (IDPs) and refugees among Burma’s ethnic minority communities. Conflict and its consequences have been going on for so long that in many ethnic minority-populated areas, continuous forced relocations and displacement––interspersed with occasional periods of relative stability––have become a fact of life for generations of poor villagers. The scale of the IDP problem in Burma is daunting. Estimates suggest that, as of late 2004, as many as 650,000 people were internally displaced in eastern Burma alone. According to a recent survey, 157,000 civilians have been displaced in eastern Burma since the end of 2002, and at least 240 villages destroyed, relocated, or abandoned. The majority of displaced people live in areas controlled by the government, now known as the State Peace and Development Council (SPDC), or by various ethnic armed groups that have agreed to ceasefires with the government. But approximately eighty-four thousand displaced people live in zones of ongoing armed conflict, where the worst human rights abuses continue. Many IDPs live in hiding in war zones. Another two million Burmese live in Thailand, including 145,000 refugees living in camps. Karen State is the location of some of the largest numbers of IDPs in Burma. Since 2002, approximately 100,000 people have been displaced from Karen areas,which include parts of Pegu and Tenasserim Divisions. Though a provisional ceasefire was agreed in December 2003 between the SPDC and the Karen National Union (KNU), sporadic fighting continues. Tatmadaw military operations against the KNU’s army, the Karen National Liberation Army (KNLA), in the first months of 2005 caused numerous deaths and injuries to civilians in poor villages along the Thai border. They also forced many civilians to flee internally or to Thailand. For example, at least 9,000 civilians were displaced in Toungoo District, in the far north of Karen State bordering Karenni State, and in Nyaunglebin District in northwest Karen State, during major Tatmadaw offensives between November 2004 and February 2005. The majority of Karen IDPs have been forced out of their homes as a direct result of the Tatmadaw’s “Four Cuts” counter-insurgency strategy, in which the Burmese army has attempted to defeat armed ethnic groups by denying them access to food, funds, recruits, and information from other insurgent groups..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Human Rights Watch
      Format/size: html, pdf (2.3MB., 415K) 72 pages
      Alternate URLs: http://hrw.org/reports/2005/burma0605/burma0605.pdf (text and maps)
      http://hrw.org/reports/2005/burma0605/burma0605text.pdf (text only)
      Date of entry/update: 09 June 2005


      Title: Nyaunglebin District: Food supplies destroyed, villagers forcibly displaced, and region-wide forced labour as SPDC forces seek control over civilians
      Date of publication: 04 May 2005
      Description/subject: "Between October 2004 and January 2005 SPDC troops launched forays into the hills of Nyaunglebin District in an attempt to flush villagers down into the plains and a life under SPDC control. Viciously timed to coincide with the rice harvest, the campaign focused on burning crops and landmining the fields to starve out the villagers. Most people fled into the forest, where they now face food shortages and uncertainty about this year's planting and the security of their villages. Meanwhile in the plains, the SPDC is using people in relocation sites and villages they control as forced labour to strengthen the network of roads and Army camps - the main tools of military control over the civilian population - while Army officers plunder people's belongings for personal gain. In both hills and plains, increased militarisation is bringing on food shortages and poverty..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG #2005-F4)
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 23 May 2005


      Title: Sovereignty, Survival and Resistance: Contending Perspectives on Karen Internal Displacement in Burma
      Date of publication: 01 March 2005
      Description/subject: Abstract: "This paper examines the nature and dynamics of Karen internal displacement in Burma through perspectives expressed by villagers themselves, and then contrasts their view of the situation with that projected by international labels and definitions. Initially, it contrasts the prevalent way of viewing internal displacement, which it argues is built upon state sovereignty, and a ‘popular sovereignty’ perspective which attempts to understand displacement by beginning from the viewpoint of local people rather than internationally-accepted definitions. It then looks at Karen internal displacement using the latter perspective and finds it to be an ongoing and sociocultural process rather than a spatial displacement from ‘home’. Though occurring in a context of armed conflict, it is not caused by armed conflict but by state efforts to consolidate territorial sovereignty over civilians who are used to local-level sovereignty and ‘non-state’ identities. Villagers therefore respond with survival strategies which in themselves constitute resistance to state authority. International perspectives, however, ignore this when they apply misleading assumptions and oversimplifications like ‘conflict-induced displacement’ and overdetermine people’s identities with labels like ‘IDP’ which depict people as helpless bystanders to their own context. Such labels ignore people’s capacities to respond to their own situation and the resistance aspect in their responses, and lead to top-down relief-based solutions which favour the repressive state and weaken the position of displaced people themselves. The importance of which epistemology is chosen to understand internal displacement situations is illustrated by the contrast between covert local-level aid to Karen village survival strategies, which is unabashedly political and empowers people in their resistance to state control, versus UNHCR’s agreement with Burma’s military junta to prepare the ground for refugee repatriation, which claims ‘humanitarian neutrality’ but strengthens the state, ignores local perspectives and poses a serious threat to the lives and livelihoods of the internally displaced. The paper concludes that most interventions in internal displacement situations fail to improve conditions for the displaced because they apply internationally-developed labels to people and situations which ignore local perspectives and dynamics, and calls for a new look at ‘internal’ displacement which is much more politically engaged and gives much greater weight to local visions."
      Author/creator: Kevin Heppner
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG Working Paper #2005-W1)
      Format/size: pdf (727K) 52 pages
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/papers/wp2005w1.htm
      Date of entry/update: 19 June 2005


      Title: Damming at Gunpoint (Burmese)
      Date of publication: November 2004
      Description/subject: BURMA ARMY ATROCITIES PAVE THE WAY FOR SALWEEN DAMS IN KAREN STATE... "As Thailand proceeds with plans to join Burma’s military regime in building a series of dams on the Salween River to gain “cheap” electricity, this report reveals the atrocities being inflicted on the people of Northern Karen State to pave the way for two of the planned dams. The Upper Salween (Wei Gyi) Dam and Lower Salween (Dar Gwin) Dam are planned to be built on the river where it forms the border between Thailand’s Mae Hong Son province and Burma’s Karen State. Together they will produce about 5,300 MW of electricity. It is estimated that the reservoir for the Upper Dam will stretch for 380 kilometers inside Karen and Karenni States of Burma. Both dams are located at the eastern edge of Papun district in Karen State. Once a Karen liberated area, during the last decade Papun has been the site of repeated military offensives and anti-insurgency campaigns by the regime’s troops to crush the Karen resistance. Before 1992, there were only ten Burma Army garrisons in Papun district. Today there are fifty-four garrisons, including twelve along the Salween river bank, fortified with heavy artillery. The military campaigns have decimated the local population. 210 villages have been destroyed, and villagers forcibly relocated to 31 relocation sites, where movement has been strictly controlled, and villagers are subject to forced labour and other human rights abuses. Tens of thousands of villagers have fled to Thailand as refugees; others live in hiding in the jungle, where they live in constant fear of being found and tortured or killed. In 1992, there were estimated to be about 107,000 people in Papun district. Now this has been halved to about 54,000, of whom about 35,000, or 60%, are internally displaced in the jungles. The rest have fled to Thailand or other parts of Burma. Out of 85 original villages in the mountainous area of Eastern Papun directly adjoining the planned dam sites, only a quarter remain. Most of the communities who had farmed and traded along the Salween River have fled to Thailand, and many farms in the fertile tributary valleys have been lying fallow for over a decade. Over 5,000 villagers remain hiding in the jungle, facing severe food shortages and health problems. Roads to the planned dam sites have been built using forced labour, and landmines have been planted alongside the roads. There has been no consultation with local communities about the dam plans. If the dams are built, the floodwaters will permanently displace many of the communities currently in hiding or living as refugees in Thailand. The increased military security for the dam sites will also inevitably mean further abuses against local populations. The Salween dams fit into the ongoing strategy of the Burmese military regime to use “development” projects to gain funding and collusion from neighbouring countries to subjugate ethnic resistance movements, and exploit the natural resources in the ethnic areas. Karen Rivers Watch makes the following recommendations:..."
      Language: Burmese
      Source/publisher: Karen Rivers Watch
      Format/size: pdf (1.4MB - OBL version; 3.23MB - original)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.burmariversnetwork.org/images/stories/publications/burmese/dammingatgunpoint.pdf
      Date of entry/update: 23 February 2012


      Title: Damming at Gunpoint (English)
      Date of publication: November 2004
      Description/subject: BURMA ARMY ATROCITIES PAVE THE WAY FOR SALWEEN DAMS IN KAREN STATE... "As Thailand proceeds with plans to join Burma’s military regime in building a series of dams on the Salween River to gain “cheap” electricity, this report reveals the atrocities being inflicted on the people of Northern Karen State to pave the way for two of the planned dams. The Upper Salween (Wei Gyi) Dam and Lower Salween (Dar Gwin) Dam are planned to be built on the river where it forms the border between Thailand’s Mae Hong Son province and Burma’s Karen State. Together they will produce about 5,300 MW of electricity. It is estimated that the reservoir for the Upper Dam will stretch for 380 kilometers inside Karen and Karenni States of Burma. Both dams are located at the eastern edge of Papun district in Karen State. Once a Karen liberated area, during the last decade Papun has been the site of repeated military offensives and anti-insurgency campaigns by the regime’s troops to crush the Karen resistance. Before 1992, there were only ten Burma Army garrisons in Papun district. Today there are fifty-four garrisons, including twelve along the Salween river bank, fortified with heavy artillery. The military campaigns have decimated the local population. 210 villages have been destroyed, and villagers forcibly relocated to 31 relocation sites, where movement has been strictly controlled, and villagers are subject to forced labour and other human rights abuses. Tens of thousands of villagers have fled to Thailand as refugees; others live in hiding in the jungle, where they live in constant fear of being found and tortured or killed. In 1992, there were estimated to be about 107,000 people in Papun district. Now this has been halved to about 54,000, of whom about 35,000, or 60%, are internally displaced in the jungles. The rest have fled to Thailand or other parts of Burma. Out of 85 original villages in the mountainous area of Eastern Papun directly adjoining the planned dam sites, only a quarter remain. Most of the communities who had farmed and traded along the Salween River have fled to Thailand, and many farms in the fertile tributary valleys have been lying fallow for over a decade. Over 5,000 villagers remain hiding in the jungle, facing severe food shortages and health problems. Roads to the planned dam sites have been built using forced labour, and landmines have been planted alongside the roads. There has been no consultation with local communities about the dam plans. If the dams are built, the floodwaters will permanently displace many of the communities currently in hiding or living as refugees in Thailand. The increased military security for the dam sites will also inevitably mean further abuses against local populations. The Salween dams fit into the ongoing strategy of the Burmese military regime to use “development” projects to gain funding and collusion from neighbouring countries to subjugate ethnic resistance movements, and exploit the natural resources in the ethnic areas. Karen Rivers Watch makes the following recommendations:..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Rivers Watch
      Format/size: pdf (617K - OBL version; 1.82MB - original)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.burmariversnetwork.org/images/stories/publications/english/dammingatgunpointenglish.pdf
      Date of entry/update: 23 February 2012


      Title: Damming at Gunpoint (Karen)
      Date of publication: November 2004
      Description/subject: BURMA ARMY ATROCITIES PAVE THE WAY FOR SALWEEN DAMS IN KAREN STATE... "As Thailand proceeds with plans to join Burma’s military regime in building a series of dams on the Salween River to gain “cheap” electricity, this report reveals the atrocities being inflicted on the people of Northern Karen State to pave the way for two of the planned dams. The Upper Salween (Wei Gyi) Dam and Lower Salween (Dar Gwin) Dam are planned to be built on the river where it forms the border between Thailand’s Mae Hong Son province and Burma’s Karen State. Together they will produce about 5,300 MW of electricity. It is estimated that the reservoir for the Upper Dam will stretch for 380 kilometers inside Karen and Karenni States of Burma. Both dams are located at the eastern edge of Papun district in Karen State. Once a Karen liberated area, during the last decade Papun has been the site of repeated military offensives and anti-insurgency campaigns by the regime’s troops to crush the Karen resistance. Before 1992, there were only ten Burma Army garrisons in Papun district. Today there are fifty-four garrisons, including twelve along the Salween river bank, fortified with heavy artillery. The military campaigns have decimated the local population. 210 villages have been destroyed, and villagers forcibly relocated to 31 relocation sites, where movement has been strictly controlled, and villagers are subject to forced labour and other human rights abuses. Tens of thousands of villagers have fled to Thailand as refugees; others live in hiding in the jungle, where they live in constant fear of being found and tortured or killed. In 1992, there were estimated to be about 107,000 people in Papun district. Now this has been halved to about 54,000, of whom about 35,000, or 60%, are internally displaced in the jungles. The rest have fled to Thailand or other parts of Burma. Out of 85 original villages in the mountainous area of Eastern Papun directly adjoining the planned dam sites, only a quarter remain. Most of the communities who had farmed and traded along the Salween River have fled to Thailand, and many farms in the fertile tributary valleys have been lying fallow for over a decade. Over 5,000 villagers remain hiding in the jungle, facing severe food shortages and health problems. Roads to the planned dam sites have been built using forced labour, and landmines have been planted alongside the roads. There has been no consultation with local communities about the dam plans. If the dams are built, the floodwaters will permanently displace many of the communities currently in hiding or living as refugees in Thailand. The increased military security for the dam sites will also inevitably mean further abuses against local populations. The Salween dams fit into the ongoing strategy of the Burmese military regime to use “development” projects to gain funding and collusion from neighbouring countries to subjugate ethnic resistance movements, and exploit the natural resources in the ethnic areas. Karen Rivers Watch makes the following recommendations:..."
      Language: Karen
      Source/publisher: Karen Rivers Watch
      Format/size: pdf (1.5MB - OBL version; 2.17MB - original)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.burmariversnetwork.org/images/stories/publications/dammingatgunpointkaren.pdf
      Date of entry/update: 23 February 2012


      Title: Enduring Hunger and Repression: : Food Scarcity, Internal Displacement, and the Continued Use of Forced Labour in Toungoo District
      Date of publication: September 2004
      Description/subject: "This report describes the current situation faced by rural Karen villagers in Toungoo District (known as Taw Oo in Karen). Toungoo District is the northernmost district of Karen State, sharing borders with Karenni (Kayah) State to the east, Pegu (Bago) Division to the west, and Shan State to the north. To the south Toungoo District shares borders with the Karen districts of Nyaunglebin (Kler Lweh Htoo) and Papun (Mutraw). The westernmost portion of the district bordering Pegu Division consists of the plains of the Sittaung River, which are heavily controlled by the State Peace and Development Council (SPDC) military junta which presently rules Burma. The rest of the district to the east is covered by steep and forested hills that are home to Karen villagers who live in small villages strewn across the hills. For years, the SPDC has endeavoured to extend its control through the hills, but their efforts thus far have been hampered by the continued armed resistance of the Karen National Liberation Army (KNLA). Within the areas that are strongly controlled by the SPDC, the villagers must live with constant demands for forced labour, food, and money from the SPDC battalions that are based in the area. Villages that do not comply with SPDC demands risk being relocated and burned. Many villages have been burned and their inhabitants forcibly relocated to sites where the SPDC may more easily control and exploit them. Those villagers who do not move to the relocation sites flee into the jungles where they live as internally displaced persons (IDPs). Several thousand villagers now live internally displaced in the mountains of Toungoo District. These villagers live in almost constant fear of SPDC Army units, and must run for their lives if they receive word that a column of soldiers is approaching. SPDC Army columns routinely shoot displaced villagers on sight. The villagers here continue to suffer severe human rights violations at the hands of the SPDC Army soldiers, including, but not limited to summary arrest, torture, forced labour, extortion, extrajudicial execution, and the systematic destruction of crops and food supplies. Although a verbal ceasefire is in place between the Karen National Union (KNU) and the SPDC, not much has changed for the villagers in the district. KNLA and SPDC military units still occasionally clash. The SPDC has taken advantage of the ceasefire to move more troops into the area and to build new camps. These new camps and troops have meant that the villagers now have to do forced labour building the new camps and portering supplies up to the camps. There are also more troops and camps to demand food and money from the villagers. The many new camps have made it more difficult for internally displaced villagers work their fields or to go to find food..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
      Format/size: pdf (9.5MB), html
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2004/khrg0401a.html
      Date of entry/update: 16 November 2004


      Title: Broken Trust, Broken Home
      Date of publication: February 2004
      Description/subject: "Fifty-five years of civil war have decimated Burma’s Karen State, forcing thousands of civilians to flee their homes. Most would like to return—by their own will when the fighting stops. By Emma Larkin/Mae Sot, Thailand When Eh Mo Thaw was 16 years old, a Burmese battalion marched into his village in Karen State and burned down all the houses. Eh Mo Thaw and his family were herded into a relocation camp where they had to work for the Burma Army, digging ponds and growing rice to feed the Burmese troops. They had no time to grow food for themselves and many were not able to survive. Villagers caught foraging for vegetables outside the camp perimeter were shot on sight. "Many people died," says Eh Mo Thaw. "I also thought I would die." Eh Mo Thaw managed to escape from the camp with his family. For 20 years, he hid in the jungle, moving from place to place whenever Burmese troops drew near. Eventually he found himself on the Thai border and, when Burmese forces stormed the area, he had no choice but to cross the border into Thailand and enter a refugee camp..."
      Author/creator: Emma Larkin
      Source/publisher: "The Irrawaddy" Vol 12, No. 2
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 09 June 2004


      Title: Expansion of the Guerrilla Retaliation Units and Food Shortages
      Date of publication: 16 June 2003
      Description/subject: KHRG Information Update #2003-U1 June 16, 2003 "The situation faced by the villagers of Toungoo District (see Map 1) is worsening as more and more parts of the District are being brought under the control of the State Peace and Development Council (SPDC) through the increased militarisation of the region. At any one time there are no fewer than a dozen battalions active in the area. Widespread forced labour and extortion continue unabated as in previous years, with all battalions in the District being party to such practices. The imposition of constant forced labour and the extortion of money and food are among the military’s primary occupations in the area. The strategy of the military is not one of open confrontation with the Karen National Liberation Army (KNLA) – the armed wing of the Karen National Union (KNU) - but of targeting the civilian population as a means of cutting all lines of support and supply for the resistance movement. There has not been a major offensive in the District since the SPDC launched Operation Aung Tha Pyay in 1995-96; however since that time the Army has been restricting, harassing, and forcibly relocating hill villages to the point where people can no longer live in them. Many of the battalions launch sweeps through the hills in search of villagers hiding there in an effort to drive them out of the hills and into the areas controlled by the SPDC. Fortunately, the areas into which many of them have fled are both rugged and remote, making it difficult for the Army to find them. For those who are discovered, once relocated, they are then exploited as a ready source for portering and other forced labour..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 01 July 2003


      Title: After the 1997 Offensives: The Burma Army's Relocation Program in Kamoethway Area
      Date of publication: April 2003
      Description/subject: "Mass Displacement by the Burmese Army's forced relocation program in Tenasserim division first rose to awareness when multi-national companies started to build the Yadana gas pipeline. What followed was a Burmese Army offensive in 1997 to KNU controlled areas to secure more of the area for their business interests. After the arrival of foreign companies and the Yadana gas pipeline the Kamoethway area became a refuge for those fleeing from the gas pipeline area. Later Kamoethway area itself became another target for Burmese troops trying to gain better access to the gas pipeline. In 1997 the Karen in Kamethway area were forcibly relocated by Burmese troops to their designated relocation sites where they were under strict control.This report focuses on the forced relocation program in Kamoethway area: how the villagers survive in the relocation sites, what is the current situation of the forced relocation sites and how the Burmese troops control the villagers..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Burma Issues
      Format/size: pdf (419K)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.burmaissues.org/En/reports/1997offensive.html
      Date of entry/update: 06 December 2010


      Title: IDPs in Burma: A short summary
      Date of publication: April 2003
      Description/subject: "Burma has a population of 50 million people, recent estimates place 2 million of those people as Internally Displaced Persons (IDP). They live precarious and transient lives in the jungles of Burma’s ethnic border areas and in the more urban central plains. They are denied the stability of having a home and a livelihood and are forced into a constant state of movement: never having the opportunity to maintain a home, their farms, access to education and medical facilities and peace of mind..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Burma Issues (Peaceway Foundation)
      Format/size: pdf (219 K)
      Date of entry/update: 06 December 2010


      Title: Flight, Hunger and Survival: Repression and Displacement in the Villages of Papun and Nyaunglebin Districts
      Date of publication: 22 October 2001
      Description/subject: "This report documents in detail the plight of villagers and the internally displaced in these two northern Karen regions. Since 1997 the SPDC has destroyed or relocated over 200 villages here, forcing tens of thousands of villagers to flee into hiding in the hills where they are now being hunted down and shot on sight by close to 50 SPDC Army battalions. The troops are now systematically destroying crops, food supplies and farmfields to flush the villagers out of the hills, making the situation increasingly desperate. Meanwhile, those living in the SPDC-controlled villages and relocation sites are fleeing to the hills to join the displaced because they can no longer bear the heavy burden of forced labour, extortion, restrictions on their movement and random torture and executions. KHRG's most intensive research effort to date, this report draws on over 300 interviews with people in the villages and forests, thousands of photographs and hundreds of documents assembled by KHRG researchers in the past 2 years." ADDITIONAL KEYWORDS: forced resettlement, forced relocation, forced movement, forced displacement, forced migration, forced to move, displaced
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG #2001-03)
      Format/size: PDF version 9770K (yes, almost 10 MB)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2001/khrg0103.pdf
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


      Title: On the Trail of Burma's Internal Refugees
      Date of publication: June 2001
      Description/subject: An American dentist travels deep into the world of Burma's Internally Displaced Persons, and discovers a people driven by fear into an uncertain future. Armed with a Colt .45, American dentist Shannon Allison is on a dangerous mission of mercy: to bring emergency medical assistance to Internally Displaced Persons inside Burma. Veteran photojournalist Thierry Falise reports from Burma's war-torn jungles on efforts to assist these victims of endemic conflict.
      Author/creator: Thierry Falise
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: "The Irrawaddy", Vol 9. No. 5
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


      Title: Papun and Nyaunglebin Districts: Internally displaced villagers cornered by 40 SPDC Battalions; Food shortages, disease, killings and life on the run.
      Date of publication: 09 April 2001
      Description/subject: Food shortages, disease, killings and life on the run.Based on new interviews and reports from KHRG field researchers, this update summarises the increasingly desperate situation for villagers in these two districts. In the hills, the people of several hundred villages are still in hiding, their villages destroyed by SPDC troops. Their survival situation is now desperate as 40 SPDC Battalions continue to systematically destroy their rice supplies and crops and landmine their fields, and shoot them on sight. In the villages under SPDC control, people suffer under an impossible burden of many kinds of forced labour and extortion.
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG (Information Update #2001-U3)
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


      Title: Burma: Displaced Karens. Like Water on the Khu Leaf
      Date of publication: 2001
      Description/subject: "War disrupts the normal relationship between people and place. Displaced by war, people must adapt to survive, both physically and socially. When people are displaced for a long time, these adaptations become normal; thus displacement starts as an aberration but becomes a constant way of life. In eastern Burma, 'normal' displacement has led to significant changes in the political, cultural and economic relationships between Karen people and their 'place' - both the physical space they occupy and their position in society. Those changes, and particularly the Karens' own revised perceptions of their place in the world, provide insights into how they, and others in Burma, cope with displacement. In Burma,1 population displacement is widespread, though little understood. Armed conflict, disputes over land and natural resources, and poverty drive people from their homes; but there has been little research on displacement's effect on people's lives.2 Many internally displaced persons live in remote areas that are also theatres of war; and the government of Burma denies permission to researchers or aid workers hoping to visit these contested regions. Furthermore, until a few years ago, Burma's displaced population attracted little international attention. Few, apart from a handful of Thailand-based aid organisations, knew about conditions in the war zones. By the late 1990s, however, the world became more aware of conditions inside Burma, thanks to reports of displacement, increasing numbers of would-be refugees seeking asylum in Thailand, the controversial repatriation of Burmese refugees from Bangladesh, deteriorating tolerance for refugees in Thailand, and the burgeoning influence of Burma's democracy movement..."
      Author/creator: Chris Cusano
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: "Caught Between Borders" - Norwegian Refugee Council (with kind permission)
      Format/size: pdf (197K)
      Date of entry/update: 10 June 2006


      Title: Karen IDPs Report: The Plight of Internally Displaced Karen People in Mu Traw District of Burma
      Date of publication: December 2000
      Description/subject: "...The report pin points the dismal conditions for the Karen people throughout the district, but the desperate situation of specific group in worst hit areas. It was always the intention to build on the BERG report, Forgotten Victims of a Hidden War: Internally Displaced Karen in Burma, published in 1998, which provided the background and general description of the displacement of the Karen in Kawthoolei. The Mu Traw report has been the first attempt by the CIDKP to provide more detailed information focussing on a single district. It is hoped that the report will lead to future publications regarding the situation in the other Karen districts..."
      Author/creator: Saw Klo Wah Moo, Saw Ternder, Saw La Thwe
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Committee for Internally Displaced Karen People
      Format/size: pdf (1.4MB)
      Date of entry/update: 11 April 2005


      Title: KHRG Commentary #2000-C2
      Date of publication: 17 October 2000
      Description/subject: The worsening situation of the internally displaced in all northern Karen districts, forced labour and convict porters, rice quotas, the desperate situation of rank-and-file SPDC soldiers, forced repatriation of refugees in Thailand, and the SPDC's persistence in denying that there is any problem whatsoever.
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


      Title: Peace Villages and Hiding Villages: Roads, Relocations, and the Campaign for Control in Toungoo District
      Date of publication: 15 October 2000
      Description/subject: Roads, Relocations, and the Campaign for Control in Toungoo District. Based on interviews and field reports from KHRG field researchers in this northern Karen district, looks at the phenomenon of 'Peace Villages' under SPDC control and 'Hiding Villages' in the hills; while the 'Hiding Villages' are being systematically destroyed and their villagers hunted and captured, the 'Peace Villages' face so many demands for forced labour and extortion that many ofthem are fleeing to the hills. Looks at forced labour road construction and its relation to increasing SPDC militarisation of the area, and also at the new tourism development project at Than Daung Gyi which involves large-scale land confiscation and forced labour. Keywords: Karen; KNU; KNLA; SPDC deserters; Sa Thon Lon activities; human minesweepers; human shields; reprisals against villagers; abuse of village heads; SPDC army units; military situation; forced relocation; strategic hamletting; relocation sites; internal displacement; IDPs; cross-border assistance; forced labour; torture; killings; extortion, economic oppression; looting; pillaging; burning of villages; destruction of crops and food stocks; forced labour on road projects; road building; restrictions on movment; lack of education and health services; tourism project; confiscation of land and forced labour for tourism project;landmines; malnutrition; starvation; SPDC Orders. ... ADDITIONAL KEYWORDS: forced resettlement, forced relocation, forced movement, forced displacement, forced migration, forced to move, displaced
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Regional & Thematic Reports (KHRG #2000-05)
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


      Title: SPDC & DKBA Orders to Villages: Set 2000-B
      Date of publication: 12 October 2000
      Description/subject: Pa'an, Dooplaya, Toungoo, Papun, & Thaton Districts. Over 250 orders dating from mid-1999 through late September 2000, the vast majority of them from the latter half of that period. Includes restrictions on the movement of villagers, forced relocation, demands for forced labour, extortion of money, food, and materials, threats to villagers and other demands, as well as documents related to rice quotas which farmers are forced to give, education and health. Also contains one order #174 which directly shows the role of a Dutch timber importing company in causing the SPDC to threaten all non-government controlled timber traders. ... ADDITIONAL KEYWORDS: forced resettlement, forced relocation, forced movement, forced displacement, forced migration, forced to move, displaced
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Orders Reports (KHRG #2000-04)
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


      Title: Interview Annex to "Starving Them Out"
      Date of publication: 31 March 2000
      Description/subject: Forced Relocations, Killings and the Systematic Starvation of Villagers in Dooplaya District
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG (#2000-02A)
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


      Title: Starving Them Out: Forced Relocations, Killings and the Systematic Starvation of Villagers in Dooplaya District
      Date of publication: 31 March 2000
      Description/subject: "This report consists of an Introduction and Executive Summary, followed by a detailed analysis of the situation supported by quotes from interviews and excerpts from SPDC order documents sent to villages in the region. As mentioned above, an Annex to this report containing the full text of the remaining interviews can be seen by following the link from the table of contents or from KHRG upon approved request..." Forced Relocations, Killings and the Systematic Starvation of Villagers in Dooplaya District
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Regional & Thematic Reports (KHRG #2000-02)
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


      Title: Central Karen State: villagers fleeing forced relocations and other abuses forced back by Thai troops
      Date of publication: 29 September 1999
      Description/subject: Over the past four months, villagers from southeastern Pa'an District in Karen State have been steadily arriving at areas along the Thai border 35-60 km north of the Thai town of Mae Sot. They have risked treacherous travelling conditions during the rainy season to make the journey, camping in makeshift shelters along the way with little food or clothing. Testimonies collected from recent refugees indicate that the SPDC is intensifying its operation from August-December 1999 to clear all villages in the southeastern corner of Pa'an District in order to undermine Karen National Liberation Army (KNLA) activities in the region.
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG Information Update)
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


      Title: Central Karen State: New Refugees Fleeing Forced Relocation, Rape and Use as Human Minesweepers
      Date of publication: 27 August 1999
      Description/subject: Since mid-August, new flows of refugees have begun arriving at the Thai border from Karen villages in southeastern Pa'an District, central Karen State. Over 100 families, totalling well over 500 people, have arrived thus far and they say that many more will follow. Those who have arrived so far come from the villages of Pah Klu, Taw Oak, Tee Hsah Ra, Kyaw Ko, Tee Wah Thay, Tee Khoh Taw, Tee Wah Klay, B'Naw Kleh Kee and Ker Ghaw, most of which are within 2-3 days' walk of the border. . . According to Karen National Union (KNU, the main Karen opposition group) sources, troops from as many as 5 different SPDC Light Infantry Divisions have been sent into the area for an operation to run from August to December 1999, intending to subjugate the area with a special focus on clearing landmines by using villagers as human minesweepers. ADDITIONAL KEYWORDS: forced resettlement, forced relocation, forced movement, forced displacement, forced migration, forced to move, displaced
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG Information Update)
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


      Title: Death Squads and Displacement - Systematic Executions, Village Destruction and the Flight of Villagers in Nyaunglebin District
      Date of publication: 24 May 1999
      Description/subject: "This report is a detailed analysis of the current human rights situation in Nyaunglebin District (known in Karen as Kler Lweh Htoo), which straddles the border of northern Karen State and Pegu Division in Burma. Most of the villagers here are Karen, though there are also many Burmans living in the villages near the Sittaung River. Since late 1998 many Karens and Burmans have been fleeing their villages in the area because of human rights abuses by the State Peace & Development Council (SPDC) military junta which currently rules Burma, and this flight is still ongoing. Those from the hills which cover most of the District are fleeing because SPDC troops have been systematically destroying their villages, crops and food supplies and shooting villagers on sight, all in an effort to undermine the Karen National Liberation Army (KNLA) by driving the civilian population out of the region. At the same time, people in the plains near the Sittaung River are fleeing because of the ever-increasing burden of forced labour, cash extortion, and heavy crop quotas which are being levied against them even though their crops have failed for the past two years running. Many are also fleeing a frightening new phenomenon in the District: the Sa Thon Lon Guerrilla Retaliation units, which appeared in September 1998 and since then have been systematically executing everyone suspected of even the remotest contact with the opposition forces, even if that contact occurred years or decades ago. Their methods are brutal, their tactics are designed to induce fear, and they have executed anywhere from 50 to over 100 civilians in the District since September 1998..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Regional & Thematic Reports(KHRG #99-04)
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


      Title: Nyaunglebin District: Internally Displaced People and SPDC Death Squads
      Date of publication: 15 February 1999
      Description/subject: Nyaunglebin (known in Karen as Kler Lwe Htoo) District is a northern Karen region straddling the border of northern Karen State and Pegu Division. It contains the northern reaches of the Bilin (Bu Loh Kloh) River northwest of Papun, and stretches westward as far as the Sittaung (Sittang) River in the area 60 to 150 kilometres north of Pegu (named Bago by the SPDC). The District has 3 townships: Ler Doh (Kyauk Kyi in Burmese), Hsaw Tee (Shwegyin), and Mone. The eastern two-thirds of the district is covered by forested hills dotted with small Karen villages, and the Karen National Liberation Army (KNLA) operates extensively in this region. The western part of the district is in the plains of the Sittaung river basin; here there are larger villages of mixed Karen and Burman population, and this area is under strong SPDC control. For several years now SLORC/SPDC forces have tried to destroy Karen resistance in the eastern hills, largely by forcing villagers to move and wiping out their ability to produce food. Many villages in the parts of these eastern hills bordering PapunDistrict have been destroyed since 1997 as part of the SPDC campaign to wipe out Karen villages in northern Papun and eastern Nyaunglebin Districts (see "Wholesale Destruction", KHRG, April 1998). According to reports by KHRG monitors in the region and interviews with internally displaced villagers and new refugees, the situation continues to worsen for villagers in eastern and western Nyaunglebin, particularly with the recent creation of SPDC 'Dam Byan Byaut Kya' death squads.
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG Information Update)
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


      Title: Displacement of Villagers in Southern Pa'an District ( Information Update)
      Date of publication: 19 September 1998
      Description/subject: "The region commonly known as Pa’an District forms a large triangular area in central Karen State, bounded in the west and north by the Salween River and the town of Pa’an (capital of Karen State), in the east by the Moei River where it forms the border with Thailand, and in the south by the motor road from Myawaddy (at the Thai border) westward to Kawkareik and Kyone Doh. Pa’an District is also known as the Karen National Liberation Army’s (KNLA’s) 7th Brigade area. The western parts of Pa’an District and the principal towns have been controlled by the SLORC/SPDC military junta for 10 years or longer, while the eastern strip adjacent to the Thai border has come largely under their control over the past 3 years. The easternmost strip of Pa’an District near the Moei River is separated from the rest of the district by the main ridge of the steep Dawna Mountains ..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


      Title: Forgotten Victims of a Hidden War: Internally Displaced Karen in Burma
      Date of publication: April 1998
      Description/subject: 1. The Karen and Kawthoolei: The Karen; Kawthoolei; The Kawthoolei districts || 2. Displacement and counter-insurgency in Burma: Population displacement in Burma; Protracted ethnic conflict in Burma; Counter-insurgency: the four-cuts || 3. The war in Kawthoolei: Seasonal offensives: the moving front line and refugee flows, 1974-92; Cease-fires (1992-94) and the renewal of offensives (1995-97) || 4. Internal displacement in Kawthoolei: Counter-insurgency and displacement in Kawthoolei; Displacement in Kawthoolei; The situation of IDPs in Kawthoolei districts; Extent of population displacement in Kawthoolei; Patterns of displacement; Factors preventing the IDPs returning home; Factors preventing the IDPs becoming refugees in Thailand; Vulnerability of IDPs; Note on forced relocations sites || 5.Assistance: International responses to IDPs; International responses to IDPs in Burma; Responses inside Burma; The response from the border area to Karen IDPs || 6.Protection: Refugees on the Thai-Burma border: international assistance with limited protection; The case of the repatriation of the Mon; The Karen: the problem of security; Assistance and protection: refugees and IDPs; The need for leverage; Transition from armed conflict || Appendix III: Interview at Mae La (This version lacks the maps and tables)
      Author/creator: Brother Amoz, Steven Lanjouw, Saw Pay Leek, Dr. Em Marta, Graham Mortimer, Alan Smith, Saw David Taw, Pah Hsaw Thut, Saw Aung Win, Saw Kwe Htoo Win
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Burma Ethnic Research Group (BERG) and Friedrich Naumann Foundation
      Format/size: PDF (570K, 505K)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.internal-displacement.org/8025708F004CE90B/(httpDocuments)/0787CA1BCAB95999802570B700599932/$file/Berg+Karen+IDP+report.pdf
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


      Title: CLAMPDOWN IN SOUTHERN DOOPLAYA: Forced relocation and abuses in newly SLORC-occupied area (Information Update)
      Date of publication: 18 September 1997
      Description/subject: "Forced relocation and abuses in newly SLORC-occupied area. KEYWORDS: forced resettlement, forced relocation, forced movement, forced displacement, forced migration, forced to move, displaced..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Regional & Thematic Reports(KHRG #97-11)
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


      Title: Myanmar: Ethnic Minority Rights under Attack
      Date of publication: 22 July 1997
      Description/subject: This report focuses . . . human rights violations against members of ethnic minority groups. These abuses, including extrajudicial executions; ill-treatment in the context of forced portering and labour; and intimidation during forcible relocations occur both in the context of counter-insurgency operations, and in areas where cease-fires hold. The State Law and Order Restoration Council SLORC, Myanmar's military government) continues to commit human rights violations in ethnic minority areas with complete impunity. This high level of human rights violations and the attendant political instability in Myanmar pose a major regional security issue for the country's new ASEAN partners. One dimension of this is the unprecedented numbers of refugees from Myanmar now in Thailand: a conservative estimate of some 200,000 refugees live in Thai cities and in camps along the Thai-Myanmar border. All of the refugees whom Amnesty International recently interviewed, and whose testimonies form the basis of this report, said that they had fled because they could no longer survive under the harsh forced labour and relocation practices of the SLORC. ... ADDITIONAL KEYWORDS: forced resettlement, forced relocation, forced movement, forced displacement, forced migration, forced to move, displaced
      Language: English and French
      Source/publisher: Amnesty International (ASA 16/20/97)
      Format/size: html, pdf
      Alternate URLs: http://www.amnesty.org/en/library/info/ASA16/020/1997/en
      http://www.amnesty.org/en/library/asset/ASA16/020/1997/en/cfed5a5a-ea43-11dd-8810-c1f7ccd3559e/asa1... (French)
      Date of entry/update: 24 November 2010


      Title: Tenasserim Division: Forced Relocation and Forced Labour (Information Update)
      Date of publication: 09 February 1997
      Description/subject: "SLORC's campaign of forced relocations and forced-labour road building in the Palauk-Palaw, Mergui and Tenasserim regions, which began in September 1996, is now being accelerated ... Almost every village between the Tavoy-Mergui-Kawthaung car road in the west and the Tenasserim River in the east, from Palauk in the north to Tenasserim town in the south has been ordered to move one or more times between September 1996 and January 1997..." ADDITIONAL KEYWORDS: forced resettlement, forced relocation, forced movement, forced displacement, forced migration, forced to move, displaced
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


      Title: Forced Relocation in Papun District
      Date of publication: 04 March 1996
      Description/subject: "SLORC has seriously stepped up its campaign to clear the entire rural population out of Papun District and make the entire area a free-fire zone. Since December 1995, orders have been issued to every rural village under SLORC control from Kyauk Nyat in the north to Ka Dtaing Dtee in the south, from the Salween River (the Thai border) in the east to at least 10 km. west of Papun - an area 50-60 km. north to south and 30 km. east to west. This area is rugged hills dotted with small villages, averaging 10-50 households (population 50-300) per village. Estimates are that 100 or more villages may be affected. Every village has been ordered to move either to SLORC Army camps surrounding Papun, such as Papun, Kaw Boke, Par Haik, or Ka Hee Kyo (all along the Papun - Kyauk Nyat road route) or to DKBA headquarters far to the south at Khaw Taw (Myaing Gyi Ngu) in Pa'an District. The orders have all been issued by SLORC. Generally a SLORC column enters the village with only a few DKBA soldiers accompanying them, and the SLORC officer issues the order. Villagers confirm that DKBA never operates in the area by themselves anymore - DKBA soldiers only appear in small groups as part of SLORC columns. SLORC units involved in the operation include Light Infantry Battalions (LIB) 340, 341, 434, and Infantry Battalion (IB) 5..." KEYWORDS: forced resettlement, forced relocation, forced movement, forced displacement, forced migration, forced to move, displaced
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Regional & Thematic Reports (KHRG #96-11)
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


      Title: Papun District: Mass Forced Relocations
      Date of publication: 18 February 1996
      Description/subject: SLORC has seriously stepped up its campaign to clear the entire rural population out of Papun District and make the entire area a free-fire zone. Since December 1995, orders have been issued to every rural village underSLORC control . . .
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


      Title: Forced Relocation in Kyauk Kyi Township
      Date of publication: 10 June 1993
      Description/subject: "Nyaunglebin District. Feb 93. Karen men, women: Forced relocation to undrained land; Only Karen villages made to move; SLORC's control of rice to control the population; forced labour (incl. portering). Description of the difficult economic conditions. Extortion; ransoming; looting. Translation of an official SLORC Relocation Order; economic oppression..." _ADDITIONAL KEYWORDS: forced resettlement, forced relocation, forced movement, forced displacement, forced migration, forced to move, displaced_
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Regional & Thematic Reports
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


      Title: Statements by Internally Displaced People: Karen Civilians Displaced by SLORC Activities in Thaton District
      Date of publication: 28 April 1993
      Description/subject: "Pa'An Township, Thaton District. Late 92-early 93. Karen M,F,C: Difficulty supporting children under SLORC oppression; Looting; pillaging (incl. killing of 30 cows);EO; rape; torture; ransoming; forced relocation; beating of children; forced labour, incl. portering; extortion; disappearances..." ADDITIONAL KEYWORDS: forced resettlement, forced relocation, forced movement, forced displacement, forced migration, forced to move, displaced
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Regional & Thematic Reports
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


      Title: Forced Relocation in Thaton District (Preliminary Report)
      Date of publication: 09 January 1993
      Description/subject: "Bilin and Pa'an Townships of Thaton Dist. Dec 92-Jan 93. Karen men, women and children: SLORC's official announcement of its "Key Village" or strategic hamleting strategy for its Border Areas Development Plan. Analysis by KHRG of the implications of the strategy, followed by interview and list of villages forced to relocate since 5 Dec 92. Forced relocation; Threat of shooting for non-compliance; detention; forced labour incl. forced portering; inhuman treatment(beating); extortion; looting; economic oppression; killing..." ADDITIONAL KEYWORDS: forced resettlement, forced relocation, forced movement, forced displacement, forced migration, forced to move, displaced
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG) Regional & Thematic Reports
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


      Title: The SLORC'S New Forced Relocation Campaign: Translations of Some SLORC Orders Received So Far
      Date of publication: 08 January 1993
      Description/subject: "Papun, Pa'an, Thaton Townships. Nov-Dec 92. Five orders requiring the relocation of villages comprising many thousands of people (5,000-7000 in Papun Township alone) establishing free-fire zones at the original sites, along with other threats of severe action in the case of non-compliance. One order informs the village head that if the villagers run away on meeting a military column they will be shot..." ADDITIONAL KEYWORDS: forced resettlement, forced relocation, forced movement, forced displacement, forced migration, forced to move, displaced
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Orders Reports (KHRG)
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


      Title: The Current Situation in Mudraw Papun District
      Date of publication: 13 November 1992
      Description/subject: The current SLORC Offensive and Displaced People "From July 92. Karen men, women, children: Air-raids on civilian villages (20 civilians killed); precarious economic life of people hiding in jungle; children die of malnutrition; Saw Hta offensive; list of villages and numbers of the people displaced; economic oppression..." Area: Tee Moo Khee Area, Kaw Lu Der Area, Saw Hta
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG) Regional & Thematic Reports
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


      Title: Forced Relocation of Villages in Htan Ta Bin Township, Toungoo District by SLORC
      Date of publication: 16 August 1992
      Description/subject: KEYWORDS: forced resettlement, forced relocation, forced movement, forced displacement, forced migration, forced to move, displaced
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    • Internal displacement/forced migration of Karenni villagers

      Individual Documents

      Title: Living Ghosts - The spiraling repression of the Karenni population under the Burmese military junta
      Date of publication: March 2008
      Description/subject: Executive Summary: "The people of Karenni State are living ghosts. Their daily survival is an achievement; however, it also signifies their further descent into poverty and a spiralling system of repression. Whilst this report documents the deteriorating situation in Karenni State over the past six years, this is nothing new for the ethnically diverse population of this geographically small area. They have been living in a protracted conflict zone for over 50 years with no respite from decades of low-intensity conflict and frequent human rights abuses. All the while both State and Non-State actors have marginalised the grassroots communities’ voices, contributing to the militarisation of their communities and societies. Burmese soldiers oppress Karenni villagers on a daily basis. Villagers are isolated from members of their own communities, and other ethnic groups; they report daily to local Burmese troops about Karenni National Progressive Party (KNPP) troop movements and other activities in their areas; community members spy on one another, reporting back to the State Peace and Development Council (SPDC); and they are punished by the SPDC in retaliation for the actions of the KNPP. All of these strategies create an environment of fear and mistrust between ethnic groups, communities, and even family members. These tactics successfully oppress the villagers, as they are too fearful and busy to think beyond daily survival. Further exacerbating the situation is the fact that villagers face oppression not only from the Burmese army, but also ceasefire groups and the KNPP. Soldiers from both the KNPP and ceasefire groups physically maltreat villagers and undermine their livelihoods. While these occurrences are certainly less frequent and less severe than similar acts by the SPDC, they still oppress the civilian population and undermine their ability and capacity to survive. Additionally the presence of many different actors has resulted in the militarisation of Karenni State. Thousands of landmines have been indiscriminately planted throughout the state, without adequate mapping or markings to minimise civilian causalities. The SPDC, ceasefire groups and the KNPP all recruit and have child soldiers in their armies. The Burmese army has the largest number of child soldiers anywhere in the world, and approximately 20 per cent of the KNPP’s troops are under 18 (the minimum age for recruitment into the armed forces under Burma’s national law). The increased militarisation of Karenni State has resulted in increases in human rights abuses. However villagers are staging their own non-violent resistance movement. They have developed and implemented a number of early warning systems and household and village-wide risk management strategies so as to minimise the impact of the SPDC and other armed groups violence and abuses. These resistance strategies have become the biggest threat to local and regional authorities; consequently the villagers are increasingly becoming the targets of hostilities from the Burmese army. Most people in Karenni State rely on agriculture as their primary source of income and are living a subsistence existence. Despite the villagers’ best efforts to secure their livelihoods, their ability and capacity to do so is constantly undermined by the SPDC and, to a lesser extent, ceasefire groups and the KNPP via crop procurement, forced production of dry season crops, arbitrary taxation and fines, theft and destruction of property and food, forced labour and land confiscation. This is further exacerbated by the drought that has been occurring in Karenni State for the past decade, which affects crop yields. When coupled with skyrocketing commodity prices, villagers’ ability to ebb out a living is further eroded – to the point of impossibility in some cases. The abject poverty in Karenni State prevents villagers from accessing basic health and education services. Whilst the SPDC claims to provide free health care and education, in reality this does not occur. Health and education services provided by the state are extremely expensive and are well-below international standards. As a result, for most people education and medical treatment becomes a luxury they simply cannot afford. As a result of poverty some villagers are turning to illegal activities in order to survive - mainly poppy production. In Karenni State there are two areas where villagers are growing poppies with the permission of ceasefire groups. Farmers can earn a significantly higher monetary return on their poppy yields than for other crops using the same quantity of land. Poppy growers can earn up to 300,000 Kyat per 1.5 kilogram package of raw opium they produce (a 1.5 kilogram package of raw opium can be produced in four months). A teacher supported by the SPDC would have to work for 60 months in order to earn the same amount. Additionally amphetamine type stimulants (ATS) are being produced in Karenni State. Three factories producing ATS in Karenni State have been identified, again in areas controlled by ceasefire groups; however as it is difficult to distinguish between factories and ordinary dwellings it is possible that there are many other ATS factories in Karenni State that have not been identified. Each factory can produce between 250,000 and 300,000 pills per month. From the three known factories in Karenni State between 9 million and 10.8 million ATS pills are being produced and released into the international drug market each year. Today over a quarter of the population in Karenni State have been forced from their homes as a direct result of the actions of the Burmese military junta. Between 70 and 80 per cent of those displaced are women and children. Displacement has increased 42 per cent since 2002 and represents eight per cent of the total population in Karenni State. Karenni State has the highest level of displacement to population ratio in all of eastern Burma. When similar comparisons are made to the five countries with the largest displaced populations in the world (Sudan, Colombia, Uganda, Iraq and the Democratic Republic of Congo) the percentage of displaced persons in Karenni State is alarmingly higher. Over 12 per cent of Sudan’s population is displaced – less than half that of Karenni State. Internally displaced persons (IDPs) in eastern Burma receive very little assistance, if any at all, primarily due to the policies of the SPDC, which severely restrict humanitarian agencies accessing these vulnerable populations. The SPDC deems IDPs as enemies of the state and implements a shoot on sight policy, which includes children and the elderly. IDPs are vulnerable to human rights abuses, exploitation and violence from the SPDC, as well as food shortages and have severely limited access to education and health care services. The most pressing need of the people and the IDP population is physical security. Most people have the capacity to earn a livelihood mitigating food shortages, to educate their children, establish a medical clinic and develop their communities; however, they lack the security necessary to do so. There are humanitarian organisations working in Karenni State, including local community based organisations (CBOs), nongovernmental organisations (NGOs) and international agencies such as the United Nations Development Programme. Despite this presence the humanitarian situation in Karenni State continues to deteriorate and people are finding themselves slipping further and further into the poverty abyss – with no foreseeable escape. The impacts from the situation in Karenni State are not confined to the State’s boundaries - they spill over into other states and divisions in Burma and also across international borders, especially into Thailand. These spill over effects include, but are not limited to: the mass exodus of people from Burma to neighbouring countries as refugees and migrant workers; illegal trafficking of drugs and people and associated health concerns, especially HIV/AIDS. These non-traditional security threats impinge on Burma’s neighbours economies and social welfare systems, affecting regional stability and security. The situation in Karenni State cannot be rectified without genuinely addressing Burma’s complex issues, including ethnic chauvinism, in a participatory manner, which engages the whole nation’s citizenry. Only when these issues are truly addressed may the people of Karenni State find peace and start living life for the future, and not as living ghosts."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Burma Issues
      Format/size: pdf (666K)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.burmaissues.org/images/stories/pdfreports/livingghosts.pdf
      Date of entry/update: 05 April 2008


      Title: Conflict and Displacement in Karenni: the Need for Considered Responses
      Date of publication: May 2000
      Description/subject: Click on the on the html link above to go to a neater, paginated table of contents or on the pdf links below to go straight to the document .... PDF File 1: Cover and Contents. PDF File 2: Boundaries; Climate; Physical Features; Population; Ethnic Groups in Karenni; Gender Roles in Karenni; Agriculture, Land Distribution and Patterns of Recourse; Resources; Water; Communication, Trade and Transport Conflict in Karenni; A History of Conflict; The Pre-Colonial Period; The Colonial Period; Independence in Burma and the Outbreak of Civil War in the Karenni States; State and Non-State Actors including Armed Groups and Political Parties; The Role of the Tatmadaw; The Karenni National Progressive Party (KNPP); The Karenni National Peoples Liberation Front (KNPLF); The Shan State Nationalities Liberation Organisation (SSNLO); The Kayan New Land Party (KNLP; The NDF and CPB Alliances and their Impact in Karenni; War in the Villages; The Formation of Splinter Groups in the 1990s; The Economics of War; The Relationship between Financing the War and Exploitation of Natural Resources; The Course of the War; Cease-fires.... PDF file 3: Conflict-Induced Displacements in Karenni -- Defining Population Movements; Conflict Induced Displacement; Displacement in 1996; Displacements by Township; Relocation Policy; Services in Relocation Sites; Smaller Relocation Sites and so-called Gathering Villages; Displacement into Shan State; Displacement as a Passing Phenomenon; Displacement, Resettlement and Transition; Women outside Relocation Sites. Development Induced Displacement -- Displacements in Loikaw City; Confiscation of Land by the Tatmadaw; Displacement as a Result of Resource Scarcity; Food Scarcity; Water Shortages; Voluntary Migrations. Health and education needs and responses: Health Policy; Health Services; Health Status of the Population; Communicable Diseases; Nutrition; Reproductive and Womens Health; Landmine Casualties; Iodine Deficiency and Goitre; Vitamin A Deficiency; Water and Sanitation; Responses to Health Needs; Education Policy; Educational Services and Coverage; Traditional Attitudes to Education; Educational Services in Karenni; Responses to Educational Needs; Responses from the Thai-Burma border; Responses by International Humanitarian Agencies from Inside Burma. Appendices: A Comparison of Populations in Relocation Sites in Karenni; Refugee Arrivals at the Thai Border; Displacements by Township; Examples of Population Movements.
      Author/creator: Vicky Bamforth, Steven Lanjouw, Graham Mortimer
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Burma Ethnic Research Group (BERG)
      Format/size: 3 pdf files: (1) Cover and Contents (472K); (2) Text-pp1-47 (782K); 3 Text pp48-128 (1300K)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.ibiblio.org/obl/docs/Considered_responses-1.pdf
      http://www.ibiblio.org/obl/docs/Considered_responses-2.pdf
      http://www.ibiblio.org/obl/docs/Considered_responses-3.pdf
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


      Title: Update on Karenni Forced Relocations
      Date of publication: 05 March 1997
      Description/subject: Between April and July 1996, SLORC ordered at least 182 villages in Karenni (Kayah) State, with an estimated total population of 25-30,000 people, to move to various relocation sites. The primary intention of SLORC was to cut off all possibility of civilian support for the Karenni National Progressive Party (KNPP); SLORC broke a ceasefire agreement to attack the KNPP in June 1995. The villages affected cover at least half the entire geographic area of Karenni. Some villages were marched at gunpoint to relocation sites without warning, but most were issued written orders to move within just 7 days or be 'considered as enemies', i.e. shot on sight without question. [For details see "Forced Relocation in Karenni", KHRG #96-24, 15/7/96.] ADDITIONAL KEYWORDS: forced resettlement, forced relocation, forced movement, forced displacement, forced migration, forced to move, displaced
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Regional & Thematic Reports (KHRG #97-01)
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


      Title: Karenni (Kayah) State: Update on Relocations (Information Update) (#97-U2)
      Date of publication: 12 February 1997
      Description/subject: Between April and July 1996, SLORC ordered at least 183 villages in Karenni State, with an estimated total population of 25-30,000 people, to move to various relocation sites. The primary intention of SLORC was to cut off all possibility of civilian support for the Karenni National Progressive Party (KNPP); SLORC had broken a ceasefire agreement to attack the KNPP in June 1995. The villages affected cover at least half the entire geographic area of Karenni.
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Regional & Thematic (KHRG #97-01)
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


      Title: Forced Relocation in Karenni
      Date of publication: 15 July 1996
      Description/subject: "Throughout June and July 1996, the State Law & Order Restoration Council (SLORC) military junta ruling Burma has conducted a mass forced relocation campaign covering more than half of the geographic area of Karenni and affecting at least 183 villages so far with an estimated total population of 25-30,000. The first orders to move came as early as April in Baw La Keh (sometimes spelled Bawlake) area on the Pon River. However, the biggest wave of relocations began on 1 June, when an order was issued to all 98 villages between the Pon and Salween Rivers to move to relocation sites beside SLORC Army camps at Shadaw and Ywathit... " ADDITIONAL KEYWORDS: forced resettlement, forced relocation, forced movement, forced displacement, forced migration, forced to move, displaced
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Regional & Thematic Reports (KHRG #96-24)
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


      Title: Mass Forced Relocations in Shan and Karenni (Kayah) States
      Date of publication: 16 June 1996
      Description/subject: "SLORC is currently using mass forced relocation campaigns as a method to try to eliminate all civilian support for opposition forces. In December 1995 and January 1996, about 100 Karen villages comprising all the hill villages in eastern Papun District were ordered to move to military sites in order to cut off any civilian support for Karen forces by completely removing the rural civilian population of the whole area. Includes list of relocated villages..." ADDITIONAL KEYWORDS: forced resettlement, forced relocation, forced movement, forced displacement, forced migration, forced to move, displaced
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG _#96-U3)
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


      Title: SLORC Activities in Ler Ba Ko Village
      Date of publication: 31 December 1992
      Description/subject: "Testimony by a refugee from central Karenni (Kayah) State and List of Villages Relocated in March 1992." "(Northwest Karenni State) List of 76 villages relocated in March 1992. Deemawso and Pruso Townships March, July 92. Karenni men, women: Rape; forced labour incl. portering and work on the Loikaw-Aung Ban railway -- 91); extortion; forced relocation; religious intolerance (the villages were Christian)..." ADDITIONAL KEYWORDS: forced resettlement, forced relocation, forced movement, forced displacement, forced migration, forced to move, displaced
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG) Regional & Thematic Reports
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


      Title: Supplementary Report on Karenni State
      Date of publication: 15 November 1992
      Description/subject: "March 92 Karenni men, women, children: Forced relocation; killing; inhuman treatment (beating, deprivation of food and medicine -- especially hard on children); conditions in the relocation camp; forced labour (Aung Ban-Loikaw railway) incl. women and children; torture; extortion; economic difficulties caused by the SLORC occupation -- people scattered in the forest; economic oppression..." ADDITIONAL KEYWORDS: forced resettlement, forced relocation, forced movement, forced displacement, forced migration, forced to move, displaced, Kayah
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG) Regional & Thematic Reports
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


      Title: Karenni State: Forced Relocation, Concentration Camps, and Slavery
      Date of publication: 10 August 1992
      Description/subject: "March-July 92. Karenni men, women, children: Looting; rape; forced portering; killings; disappearances; forced relocation of more than 20,000 people in 76 villages (see Orders, 12 June 92). Description of conditions in a relocation camp (particularly bad for children); internal displacement; religious intolerance (destroying churches and pressure to convert to Buddhism); pillaging; inhuman treatment(deprivation of food and medicine); forced labour on Aung Ban-Loikaw railway; inhuman treatment during forced labour and arbitrary detention; torture.Including slavery under the United Nations Development Program..." ADDITIONAL KEYWORDS: forced resettlement, forced relocation, forced movement, forced displacement, forced migration, forced to move, displaced
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG) Regional & Thematic Reports
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


      Title: Statements by Karenni Refugees
      Date of publication: 12 June 1992
      Description/subject: "Statement by Karenni refugees fleeing a SLORC ultimatum to all villagers in a large part of the State where the Karenni opposition is strong to leave their villages or die. Their statements describe some of the SLORC army’s activities in civilian villages of western Karenni..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG) Regional & Thematic Reports
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


      Title: The SLORC's "Leave Or Die" Ultimatum to Karenni Villagers
      Date of publication: 12 June 1992
      Description/subject: "Direct translations of stamped and signed orders posted by the SLORC in villages throughout western Karenni State in late March of this year. The large areas affected are in the "brown" or "black" areas (those not firmly under SLORC control, where the KNPP opposition is active)..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    • Internal displacement/forced migration of Mon villagers

      Individual Documents

      Title: Destination Unknown: Hope and Doubt Regarding IDP Resettlement in Mon State
      Date of publication: 18 October 2012
      Description/subject: Executive Summary: "The growing optimism surrounding Burma’s political and social transitions has begun to be accompanied by ambitions to resettle displaced communities along the country’s border with Thailand. As the notion and its attendant proposals continue to proliferate, it seems timely to assess how the communities directly affected by this prospect feel about resettlement. Interviews were conducted with 61 Mon internally displaced people (IDPs) who expressed an array of views ranging from excitement for better jobs in new locations to utter refusal for fear of renewed conflict. Concerns in the IDP community that relocation could lead to a recurrence of violence or exploitation may seem unfounded to those flushed with enthusiasm for Burma’s brisk pace of reform. However, it is precisely because of this rapid shift, after fifty years of a deeply entrenched system of repression, that many ethnic communities are unable to abruptly shed their enduring memories of systematic injustice. Similarly, for people in remote areas, there has not yet been adequate evidence of improvements to daily life or sufficient trust built between disparate groups to warrant immediate, broad-based support. Importantly, almost all interviewees that addressed resettlement used “if” to describe their opinions, explaining that relocation is attractive only if adequate security, employment, education, and healthcare services are provided. This highlights fundamental priorities among IDPs, but also showcases the lack of information currently granted to internally displaced people. For those that had heard about relocation, many did not know if it was true, or where and when they might go, or if it even applied to them. This incomplete information sharing has led to resettlement constituting little more than a rumor in IDP sites, and the consequent anxiety and confusion has been unnecessary and detrimental. The process needed to develop resettlement programs offers a singular opportunity to build trust with IDP communities by employing an inclusive and participatory approach. The varying opinions and levels of support for resettlement demonstrated in this report serve as a key indicator that the IDP community is not a homogeneous group about which conclusions can be easily or independently reached. Some IDPs reported enjoying new freedoms and infrastructure projects, while other accounts were framed by doubt, exhibiting vivid memories of past abuses and few observations of significant change. In any case, each individual IDP or IDP family has a unique set of values and experiences that will define what an agreeable future looks like, and each must be given the chance to make free, prior, and informed decisions regarding engagement with resettlement programs. This report’s primary aim is to amplify the voices of Mon IDPs and encourage the incorporation of their opinions into the development of resettlement agendas. We urge that the President Thein Sein government, the New Mon State Party, and associated international organizations be directly accountable to IDP populations by respecting their narratives and promoting full transparency in every stage of the process. While recent, positive changes may provide compelling reasons for people to return, they should not completely overwhelm considerations of why they left."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Human Rights Foundation of Monland (HURFOM)
      Format/size: pdf (1.39MB)
      Date of entry/update: 18 October 2012


      Title: Hardship of displaced families in the rural area
      Date of publication: 31 October 2003
      Description/subject: "...‘The population displacement’ is a forgotten problem in Burma. While many people are talking ‘negotiation’ and ‘national reconciliation’, but there is no real solution how to stop the displacement in the country. It is also a serious issue which is necessary to consider. However, the population displacement always relates to war, and so that it is needed to stop war if we want to stop the population displacement problems"
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Women and Child Rights Project (Southern Burma)
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 06 April 2004


    • Internal displacement/forced migration of Rohingyas
      See also Main Library > States and Regions of Burma/Myanmar > Arakan (Rakhine) State

      Websites/Multiple Documents

      Title: The conundrum in western Myanmar
      Date of publication: 14 August 2012
      Description/subject: "Since Hillary Clinton’s historic visit to Myanmar, the nation’s reforms have drawn the world’s attention. The end of a half century of military rule leaves Myanmar with countless challenges. Recently, the violence in western Myanmar’s Rakhine State has become a controversial topic. Global bodies, human rights organizations, world leaders and US lawmakers have rushed to condemn what they see as the treatment of these stateless people. The reality of the history of the Rohingya is not as clear as many believe. A campaign of disinformation has led to denunciation of a policy in Myanmar that at best, is grossly exaggerated, and at worst, does not exist. Headlines have screamed the words “ethnic cleansing and “pogrom.” Myanmar history of secrecy and disregard of human rights under the previous military government has lent credibility to this campaign..."
      Author/creator: Chan Myae Khine
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: News and Periodicals Enterprise, Ministry of Information, Union of Myanmar
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 17 July 2014


      Title: MIMU - RAKHINE emergency page
      Description/subject: Tools for humanitarian assistance..."For up-to-date relevant information including maps, contact list, initial assessment form and 3W data...3W maps/reports for 2012 can be found HERE. 268 organizations were contacted to provide inputs for this round of the 3W (Who is doing what, where) exercise. Amongst them, 87 agencies provided updates – (1) Embassy/Donor (3) Red Cross societies, (12) UN Agencies, (25) LNGOs and (46) INGOs. The 3W products reflect implementing agencies' projects in 329 townships, 4,089 village tract and 11,479 villages throughout the country...".....If this site does not have the latest situation reports, go to the Alternate URL - the OCHA myanmar page at http://reliefweb.int/country/mmr
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Myanmar Information Management Unit (MIMU)
      Format/size: html, pdf
      Alternate URLs: http://reliefweb.int/country/mmr
      Date of entry/update: 04 July 2012


      Individual Documents

      Title: Limited health options for Myanmar’s Rohingya IDPs
      Date of publication: 31 May 2013
      Description/subject: "SITTWE, 31 May 2013 (IRIN) - Aid workers are calling for better health access for an estimated 140,000 internally displaced persons (IDPs) in Myanmar’s western Rakhine State, most of them Rohingya Muslims. Although a number of NGOs and government mobile clinics are providing basic health services inside the roughly 80 camps and settlements, they are limited, and emergency health referrals remain a serious concern, they say. According to Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF), conditions inside the camps, combined with the segregation of ethnic Buddhist Rakhine and Muslim Rohingya and ongoing movement restrictions, are having a severe impact on health care. Movement restrictions were slapped on Rohingyas around Sittwe, the Rakhine State capital, after bouts of sectarian violence in June and October 2012. Another concern is the negative attitude of many ethnic Rakhine to assistance provided to Muslim IDPs. “With threats and intimidation both to health provider and patient, this becomes an irreconcilable dilemma,” Carol Jacobsen of the medical NGO Merlin told IRIN, adding that “hostile access”, limited transportation and poor security were obstacles to health care for the Muslim population..."
      Language: English, Arabic
      Source/publisher: IRIN
      Format/size: html
      Alternate URLs: http://arabic.irinnews.org/Report/3737/
      Date of entry/update: 06 June 2013


      Title: Humanitarian Situation in Kachin & Rakhine States (05 Nov 2012)
      Date of publication: 05 November 2012
      Description/subject: Text, maps and photos
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA)
      Format/size: pdf (646K)
      Date of entry/update: 07 November 2012


      Title: “The Government Could Have Stopped This” - Sectarian Violence and Ensuing Abuses in Burma’s Arakan State
      Date of publication: 01 August 2012
      Description/subject: Summary: "In June 2012, deadly sectarian violence erupted in western Burma’s Arakan State between ethnic Arakan Buddhists and Rohingya Muslims (as well as non-Rohingya Muslims). The violence broke out after reports circulated that on May 28 an Arakan woman was raped and killed in the town of Ramri allegedly by three Muslim men. Details of the crime were circulated locally in an incendiary pamphlet, and on June 3, a large group of Arakan villagers in Toungop stopped a bus and brutally killed 10 Muslims on board. Human Rights Watch confirmed that local police and soldiers stood by and watched the killings without intervening. On June 8, thousands of Rohingya rioted in Maungdaw town after Friday prayers, destroying Arakan property and killing an unknown number of Arakan residents. Sectarian violence then quickly swept through the Arakan State capital, Sittwe, and surrounding areas. Mobs from both communities soon stormed unsuspecting villages and neighborhoods, killing residents and destroying homes, shops, and houses of worship. With little to no government security present to stop the violence, people armed themselves with swords, spears, sticks, iron rods, knives, and other basic weapons, taking the law into their own hands. Vast stretches of property from both communities were razed. The government claimed that 78 people were killed—an undoubtedly conservative figure—while more than 100,000 people were displaced from their homes. The hostilities were fanned by inflammatory anti-Muslim media accounts and local propaganda. During the period after the rape and killing was reported and before the violence broke out, tensions had risen dramatically in Arakan State. However, local residents from each community told Human Rights Watch that the Burmese authorities provided no protection and did not appear to have taken any special measures to preempt the violence. On June 10, fearing the unrest would spread beyond the borders of Arakan State, Burmese President Thein Sein announced a state of emergency, transferring civilian power to the Burmese army in affected areas of the state. At this point, a wave of concerted violence by various state security forces against Rohingya communities began. For example, Rohingya in Narzi quarter—the largest Muslim area in Sittwe, home to 10,000 Muslims—described “THE GOVERNMENT COULD HAVE STOPPED THIS” 2 how Arakan mobs burned down their homes on June 12 while the police and paramilitary Lon Thein forces opened fire on them with live ammunition. In northern Arakan State, the Nasaka border guard force, the army, police, and Lon Thein committed killings, mass arrests, and looting against Rohingya. In the aftermath, local Arakan leaders and members of the Arakan community in Sittwe have called for the forced displacement of the Muslim community from the city, while local Buddhist monks have initiated a campaign of exclusion, calling on the local Buddhist population to neither befriend nor do business with Muslims..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Human Rights Watch (HRW)
      Format/size: pdf (630K-original; 575K-OBL version)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.burmalibrary.org/docs13/The_Government_Could_Have_Stopped_this-HRW-red.pdf
      Date of entry/update: 02 August 2012


      Title: Burma's Human Rights Blind Spot: A Compendium on Violence Against Rohingyas in June/July 2012
      Date of publication: 25 July 2012
      Description/subject: Compendium of 30 or so reports... Introduction: "By virtue of its geography (great river valleys, plains, plateaus and mountain chains) and history (migration and settlement along the rivers and in the uplands) Burma is a multicultural crossroads of Southeast and South Asia. Peoples, ways of life and religions from the Indian subcontinent, Himalayas, Indo-China and beyond, have intermingled in a land which became a nation under British colonization and has struggled with ethnic identities ever since. Although the vast majority of inhabitants are Buddhists, with the overwhelmingly Buddhist Burmans the largest ethnic group, nearly all other religions are represented in the population. Tolerance and cosmopolitanism were among Burma's strengths in times of peace. Unfortunately, military rule and the promulgation of ethnic-majority nationalism have been in effect since General Ne Win's takeover in 1962, and even in the post-British democracy of U Nu, establishment of Buddhism as a state religion appeared to sideline Burma's people of other faiths. Ne Win's dictatorship favored the assimilation of Buddhist groups like the Rakhines, Mons and Shans into a Burman nationalism, discouraging those peoples' knowledge of their own languages, civilized history and cultures. Targeting Christians and Muslims, Ne Win's armed forces often burned churches and mosques, torturing and killing pastors and imams. In western Burma's Arakan State (aka Rakhine State), military rule brought decreased rights for the Buddhist Rakhine people and absolute denial of citizenship for the Muslim Rohingya people. The mass exodus of Rohingyas fleeing repression to neighboring Bangladesh took place in 1978 and 1991, resulting in tens of thousands of refugees cordoned off in squalid camps in Bangladesh or permanently stranded overseas (Gulf States, Pakistan, Malaysia, India, Thailand.) As Rohingyas left the northern Arakan region, particularly Buthidaung and Maungdaw, out of fear of extreme repression, Burma's post-1988 junta settled Buddhist Rakhine and Burman villagers in the area -- a scenario guaranteed to make both groups resent each other. Rohingyas who remained were often preyed upon by border security forces and other military personnel, and were severely restricted in rights such as marriage and travel. Military rape and other violent victimization of Rohingyas was well-documented by respected international human rights organizations..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Project Maje
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 25 July 2012


      Title: Burning Homes, Sinking Lives - A situation report on violence against stateless Rohingya in Myanmar and their refoulement from Bangladesh
      Date of publication: 02 July 2012
      Description/subject: "...this report documents the severity of the human rights abuses suffered by Rohingya within Myanmar – including mass violence, killings and attacks, the burning and destruction of property, arbitrary arrests, detention and disappearances, the deprivation of emergency healthcare and humanitarian aid. Such human rights abuses are being carried out with impunity by civilians and agents of the state alike. The organised and widespread nature of this state sponsored violence raises serious questions of crimes against humanity being committed by Myanmar. This report also documents the refoulement of Rohingya refugees from Bangladesh and related human rights violations, including the push-back of boats carrying Rohingya into dangerous waters and the failure to provide refuge, shelter and humanitarian aid to those fleeing persecution. Historically, the Rohingya have faced acute discrimination and human rights abuse in Myanmar, and Rohingya refugees fleeing persecution to Bangladesh have faced severe hardships including the lack of humanitarian aid, shelter and security. This present crisis is a tragic reminder of the vulnerabilities of stateless people when their countries of habitual residence and the international community fail to protect them. Urgent action is required to end the violence, protect the victims and bring those responsible to justice. Of equal importance is the need for a long-term process of reinstating Myanmar nationality to Rohingya who were arbitrarily deprived of a nationality in 1982, resolving ethnic conflicts and protecting the human rights and freedoms of Rohingya within Myanmar and in other countries. The Equal Rights Trust makes the following urgent and long-term recommendations to the governments of Myanmar and Bangladesh and to the UNHCR and international community..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: The Equal Rights Trust
      Format/size: pdf (1.4MB-OBL version; 2.26MB-original)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.equalrightstrust.org/ertdocumentbank/The%20Equal%20Rights%20Trust%20-%20Burning%20Homes%...
      Date of entry/update: 03 July 2012


      Title: Myanmar: Displacement in Rakhine State. Situation Report No. 3 (28 June 2012)
      Date of publication: 28 June 2012
      Description/subject: HIGHLIGHTS/KEY PRIORITIES: "• The overall security situation is reported to be stable. Emergency rule and curfew remain in place in six Townships across Rakhine State. • According to official figures, 78 people are dead, 87 injured and 3,000 residential buildings are damaged as of 24 June. Over 52,200 people remained newly displaced across Rakhine State. Humanitarian partners estimate that around 90,000 people are affected, including the newly displaced people. • As of 25 June, WFP has provided 725 metric tons of food commodities (rice, pulses, oil and salt) to over 92,000 affected people in five townships, Sittwe, Pauktaw, Maungdaw, Rahtedaung and Buthidaung. • A total of 14 representatives from six UN agencies, six INGOs and two donor agencies left for Sittwe on 27 June to take part in a mission organized by the Government to observe the situation in Rakhine State and to strengthen coordination with the State Government as a primary focal point for the response. • The traffic on the road between Buthidaung and Maungdaw is interrupted due to a landslide..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA)
      Format/size: pdf (103K)
      Date of entry/update: 03 July 2012


      Title: Myanmar: Displacement in Rakkhine State, Myanmar
      Date of publication: 27 June 2012
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: World Health Organisation (WHO)
      Format/size: html
      Alternate URLs: http://reliefweb.int/sites/reliefweb.int/files/resources/MMR_ESR1-2012.pdf
      Date of entry/update: 03 July 2012


      Title: Myanmar: Displacement in Rakhine State. Situation Report No. 2 (20 June 2012)
      Date of publication: 20 June 2012
      Description/subject: HIGHLIGHTS/KEY PRIORITIES" "• According to official Government statistics dated 18 June, over 52,200 people have been displaced and are accommodated in 66 camps/villages. Unofficial estimates indicated that 80,000 to 90,000 people have been affected. • The Government has requested the RC/HC and humanitarian partners to support its response efforts. Humanitarian assistance delivery is ongoing. It includes food, medical, water and sanitation interventions. Food distribution that reached some 82,000 people as of 19 June. • The situation in Rakhine State has somewhat eased, although sporadic incidents continue to be reported..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA)
      Format/size: pdf (255K)
      Date of entry/update: 03 July 2012


      Title: Myanmar: Displacement in Rakhine State. Situation Report No. 1 (15 June 2012)
      Date of publication: 15 June 2012
      Description/subject: HIGHLIGHTS/KEY PRIORITIES: "• Instability in Rakhine State that started since 28 May has resulted in displacement of over 36,000 people who are now located in 43 camps/locations, loss of lives and damages to houses and communal buildings. This is an initial estimate which will need to be revised as more information becomes available and assessment are carried out. • The violence prompted the Government to impose curfew in six locations and declare the state of emergency on 10 June across the State. • At the invitation of the Minister for Border Affairs, a UN delegation led by Special Advisor of the UN Secretary-General and the UN Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator for Myanmar visited IDPs locations in Maungdaw. • The Government called for humanitarian partners to support the Government’s efforts to respond to the crisis. The UN and its humanitarian partners confirmed their readiness to provide humanitarian assistance all the affected people across Rakhine."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA)
      Format/size: pdf (179K)
      Date of entry/update: 03 July 2012


      Title: The Rohingya: Forced Migration and Statelessness
      Date of publication: 28 February 2001
      Description/subject: "Forced Migration in the South Asian Region: Displacement, Human Rights and Conflict Resolution" Paper submitted for publication in a book edited by Omprakash Mishra on "Forced Migration in South Asian Region", Centre for Refugee studies Jadavpur University, Calcutta and Brookings Institution Project on Internal Displacement. "In the eyes of the media and the general public, whether in Bangladesh or further afield, the situation of the Rohingya from Burma[ii] is usually referred to as a ?refugee problem?. Over the last two decades, Bangladesh has born the brunt of two mass exoduses, each of more then 200,000 people, placing them among the largest in Asia. Each of these massive outflows of refugees was followed by mass repatriation to Burma. Repatriation has been considered the preferred solution to the refugee crisis. However, this has not proved a durable solution, since the influx of Rohingyas over international borders has never ceased. And it is unlikely that it will stop, so long as the root causes of this unprecedented exodus are not effectively remedied. The international community has often focussed its attention on the deplorable conditions in the refugee camps in Bangladesh, rather than on the root causes of the problem, namely the denial of legal status and other basic human rights to the Rohingya in Burma. This approach doubtless stems from the practical difficulty of confronting an intractable military regime which refuses to recognise the Rohingya as citizens of Burma, and of working out solutions acceptable to all parties involved. The actual plight and continuous exodus of the Rohingya people has been rendered invisible. Though they continue to cross international borders, they are also denied the right of asylum, being labelled ?economic migrants?. The international community has preferred to ignore the extent of this massive forced migration, which has affected not only Bangladesh, but also other countries such as Pakistan, Malaysia, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, etc..."
      Author/creator: Chris Lewa
      Language: English
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    • Internal displacement/forced migration of Shan. Palaung and Wa villagers

      Individual Documents

      Title: An Unseen Crisis
      Date of publication: 25 February 2014
      Description/subject: Summary: "Increased troop deployment, attacks and abuses by the Burma Army in northern Shan State during the past year have caused large-scale new displacement of Palaung villagers, calling into question the Burmese government’s claims to be seeking a peaceful settlement to the ethnic conflict. The number of Burmese government troops in Palaung areas of northern Shan State has doubled from 16 to over 30 battalions during 2013. Attacks and abuses by these troops have caused the fresh displacement of over 3,000 mostly Palaung villagers in the past year, who are now sheltering in four new camps in Namtu, Tangyan and Kutkhai townships. This is a fourfold in crease since late 2012, when PWO documented about 1,000 IDPs sheltering in three camps in Namkham and Manton town- ships. The military build-up is clearly linked to the government’s attempts to secure its large-scale investment projects in the area, including the Shwe oil and gas pipelines, which started sending gas to China in June 2013. Offensives have been ongoing against local ethnic resistance groups, in cluding the Shan State Army North (SSA-N), the Kachin Independence Army (KIA), and the Ta’ang National Liberation Army (TNLA). Burma Army shelling of villages, burning of homes and property, forced portering, torture and sexual violence have caused new displacement of over 20 villages during the past year. The offensives have continued despite ongoing ceasefire negotiations between the Burmese government and the ethnic armed groups. The TNLA met with the Myanmar Peace Center, led by U Aung Min on July 31, 2013, in Muse, northern Shan State, but the Burma Army launched new attacks against TNLA in Kutkhai and Kyaukmae only eleven days afterwards. There is insufficient humanitarian aid reaching the IDP camps. Aid agencies provided basic assistance to IDPs in Kutkhai an d Tangyan when they first fled, but since then there has been no regular support of rice or other food. The IDPs are forced to find work as daily labourers to feed their families, but there is little work available. Shortages of food have exacerbated health problems in the camps, but there has been almost no medical aid..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Ta’ang Women’s Organization (TWO)
      Format/size: pdf (1.8MB)
      Date of entry/update: 09 December 2014


      Title: Pipeline Nightmare (English and Burmese)
      Date of publication: 07 November 2012
      Description/subject: "Shwe Pipeline Brings Land Confiscation, Militarization and Human Rights Violations to the Ta’ang People. The Ta’ang Students and Youth Organization (TSYO) released a report today called “Pipeline Nightmare” that illustrates how the Shwe Gas and Oil Pipeline project, which will transport oil and gas across Burma to China, has resulted in the confiscation of people’s lands, forced labor, and increased military presence along the pipeline, affecting thousands of people. Moreover, the report documents cases in 6 target cities and 51 villages of human rights violations committed by the Burmese Army, police and people’s militia, who take responsibility for security of the pipeline. The government has deployed additional soldiers and extended 26 military camps in order to increase pressure on the ethnic armed groups and to provide security for the pipeline project and its Chinese workers. Along the pipeline, there is fighting on a daily basis between the Burmese Army and the Kachin Independence Army, Shan State Army – North and Ta’ang National Liberation Army in Namtu, Mantong and Namkham, where there are over one thousand Ta’ang (Palaung) refugees. “Even though the international community believes that the government has implemented political reforms, it doesn’t mean those reforms have reached ethnic areas, especially not where there is increased militarization along the Shwe Pipeline, increased fighting between the Burmese Army and ethnic armed groups, and negative consequences for the people living in these areas,” said Mai Amm Ngeal, a member of TSYO. The China National Petroleum Corporation and Myanmar Oil and Gas Enterprise have signed agreements for the Shwe Pipeline, however the companies have not conducted any Environmental Impact Assessments or Social Impact Assessments. While the people living along the pipeline bear the brunt of the effects, the government will earn an estimated USD$29 billion over the next 30 years. “The government and companies involved must be held accountable for the project and its effects on the local people, such as increasing military presence and Chinese workers along the pipeline, both of which cause insecurity for the local communities and especially women. The project has no benefit for the public, so it must be postponed,” said Lway Phoo Reang, Joint Secretary (1) of TSYO. TSYO urges the government to postpone the Shwe Gas and Oil Pipeline project, to withdraw the military from Shan State, reach a ceasefire with all ethnic armed groups in the state, and address the root causes of the armed conflict by engaging in political dialogue."
      Language: English, Burmese/ ျမန္မာဘာသာ
      Source/publisher: Ta’ang Students and Youth Organization (TSYO)
      Format/size: pdf (English, 2MB-OBL version; 6.77-original; 1.45-Burmese-OBL version)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.palaungland.org/wp-content/uploads/Report/S%20P%20N%20Report/Pipeline%20Nightmare%20report%20in%20English%20version%20(Final).pdf (original)
      http://www.burmalibrary.org/docs14/Pipeline_Nightmare-bu-op--red.pdf (full report in Burmese)
      http://www.palaungland.org/wp-content/uploads/Report/S%20P%20N%20Report/Immediate%20Release%207%20N... (Summary in Burmese)
      http://www.palaungland.org/wp-content/uploads/Report/S%20P%20N%20Report/For%20Immediate%20Release%2... (Summary in Thai)
      http://www.palaungland.org/wp-content/uploads/Report/S%20P%20N%20Report/2012-11%20Shwe%20Pipeline%2... (Summary in Chinese)
      Date of entry/update: 07 November 2012


      Title: The Burden of War - Women bear burden of displacement
      Date of publication: 03 November 2012
      Description/subject: Executive Summary: "Worsening conflict and abuses by Burmese government troops in northern Shan State have displaced over 2,000 Palaung villagers from fifteen villages in three townships since March 2011. About 1,000, mainly women and children, remain in three IDP settlements in Mantong and Namkham townships, facing serious shortages of food and medicine; most of the rest have dispersed to find work in China. Burmese troops have been launching offensives to crush the Kachin Independence Army (KIA), the Ta-ang National Liberation Army (TNLA), and the Shan State Army-North (SSA-N), to secure control of strategic trading and investment areas on the Chinese border, particularly the route of China’s trans-Burma oil and gas pipelines. In rural Palaung areas, patrols from sixteen Burma Army battalions and local militia have been forcibly conscripting villagers as soldiers and porters, looting livestock and property, and torturing and killing villagers suspected of supporting the resistance. This has caused entire villages to become abandoned. Interviews conducted by PWO in September 2012 show that the burden of displacement is falling largely on women, as most men have fled or migrated to work elsewhere. The ratio of women to men of working age in the IDP camps is 4:1. Women, including pregnant mothers, had to walk for up to a week through the jungle to reach the camps, carrying their children and possessions, and avoiding Burmese army patrols and landmines. Elderly people were left behind. Little aid has reached the IDP settlements, particular the largest camp housing over 500 in a remote mountainous area north of Manton, where shortages of water, food and medicines are causing widespread disease. Mothers are struggling to feed their families on loans of rice from local villagers, and have taken their daughters out of school. Some women have left children with relatives and gone to find work in China. PWO is calling urgently for aid to these IDPs, and for political pressure on Burma’s government to end its military offensives and abuses, pull back troops from conflict areas, and begin meaningful political dialogue to address the root causes of the conflict."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Palaung Women's Organization
      Format/size: pdf (1.7MB-OBL version; 7.29MB-original)
      Alternate URLs: http://eng.palaungwomen.com/Report/The%20Burden%20of%20War.pdf'>http://eng.palaungwomen.com/Report/The%20Burden%20of%20War.pdf
      http://eng.palaungwomen.com
      Date of entry/update: 06 November 2012


      Title: 10,000 Shans uprooted, 500 houses burned in Burmese regime's latest scorched earth campaign
      Date of publication: 13 August 2009
      Description/subject: 10,000 Shans uprooted, 500 houses burned in Burmese regime’s latest scorched earth campaign (press release)... Map of villages forcibly relocated... Summary of villages forcibly relocated... Images of the Burmese regime's latest scorched earth campaign
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Shan Human Rights Foundation (SHRF), Shan Women's Action Network (SWAN), Shan Relief and Development Committee, Shan Sapawa Environmental Organisation, Shan Youth Power, Shan Health Committee
      Format/size: html, pdf
      Date of entry/update: 29 November 2010


      Title: Roots and Resilience - Tasang dam threatens war-torn Shan communities
      Date of publication: July 2009
      Description/subject: 'The report “Roots and Resilience” by the Shan Sapawa Environment Organization focuses on the ecologically unique area of Keng Kham, a community of 15,000 that was forcibly relocated over ten years ago; the majority have fled to Thailand. Today the estimated 3,000 that remain are managing to maintain their livelihoods and culture despite the constant threats of the Burma Army and the impending Tasang dam. Indigenous Shan cultural practices, river-fed farms, sacred cave temples and pristine waterfalls are depicted in photos from this isolated war-zone, together with updated information about the dam project, which has been shrouded in secrecy. The 7,110 MW Tasang Dam is the biggest of five dams planned on the Salween River; the majority of the power from the dam will be sold to Thailand. Project investors include the Thai MDX Company and China’s Gezhouba Group Company. Thailand’s support for the controversial dam was recently reiterated when the project was included in its national Power Development Plan. Military tension has escalated in recent months in Shan State as the Burmese regime has been putting pressure on the United Wa State Army to transform into a “Border Guard Force.” Abuses linked to anti-insurgency campaigns are also on the rise.'
      Language: English, Thai
      Source/publisher: Shan Sapawa Environmental Organization
      Format/size: pdf (4.68MB - English; 6.58MB - Thai)
      Alternate URLs: http://salweenwatch.org/images/PDF/rootsandresiliencethai.pdf
      Date of entry/update: 05 October 2009


      Title: Displacement and disease: the Shan exodus and infectious disease implications for Thailand
      Date of publication: 14 March 2008
      Description/subject: Abstract: "Decades of neglect and abuses by the Burmese government have decimated the health of the peoples of Burma, particularly along her eastern frontiers, overwhelmingly populated by ethnic minorities such as the Shan. Vast areas of traditional Shan homelands have been systematically depopulated by the Burmese military regime as part of its counter-insurgency policy, which also employs widespread abuses of civilians by Burmese soldiers, including rape, torture, and extrajudicial executions. These abuses, coupled with Burmese government economic mismanagement which has further entrenched already pervasive poverty in rural Burma, have spawned a humanitarian catastrophe, forcing hundreds of thousands of ethnic Shan villagers to flee their homes for Thailand. In Thailand, they are denied refugee status and its legal protections, living at constant risk for arrest and deportation. Classified as “economic migrants,” many are forced to work in exploitative conditions, including in the Thai sex industry, and Shan migrants often lack access to basic health services in Thailand. Available health data on Shan migrants in Thailand already indicates that this population bears a disproportionately high burden of infectious diseases, particularly HIV, tuberculosis, lymphatic filariasis, and some vaccine-preventable illnesses, undermining progress made by Thailand’s public health system in controlling such entities. The ongoing failure to address the root political causes of migration and poor health in eastern Burma, coupled with the many barriers to accessing health programs in Thailand by undocumented migrants, particularly the Shan, virtually guarantees Thailand’s inability to sustainably control many infectious disease entities, especially along her borders with Burma."
      Author/creator: Voravit Suwanvanichkij
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Conflict and Health 2008, 2:4
      Format/size: pdf (170K)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.conflictandhealth.com/content/2/1/4
      Date of entry/update: 09 April 2008


      Title: RUNNING THE GAUNTLET: THE IMPACT OF INTERNAL DISPLACEMENT IN SOUTHERN SHAN STATE
      Date of publication: January 2004
      Description/subject: "The plight of Burma's internally displaced persons has largely been overlooked by the international community and the Burmese government itself. Villagers in the country's war zones nevertheless have suffered for decades the adverse effects of conflict. For some, displacement has become a way of life and a multi-generational phenomenon. Displacement wherever it occurs profoundly changes the persons forced to move. People lose belongings, jobs, and loved ones. The case of the internally displaced in southern Shan State is no different. In this report, the Humanitarian Affairs Research Project documents the impact displacement has had on civilians in southern Shan State and the living conditions in the various places to which they fled. The report builds successfully on the work of other local research groups and adds updated information and perspective to the study of Burma's internally displaced. It will be a valuable addition to policy makers, academics, and anyone concerned about the fate of the people of Shan State. One lesson clearly emerging from the report is that the IDPs in southern Shan State clearly are in need of protection and assistance. More needs to be done and it needs to be done now. The Burmese government as well as other domestic and international actors should consider carefully the ways in which this important goal can be accomplished. This report offers some recommendations that can help to set the actors on the right path..."....This document contains a Shan version of the Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement. Since this is an image file of almost 2MB, OBL has produced the whole document, with GP; the Guiding Principles as a separate document; and the English text without GP.
      Author/creator: GARY RISSER, OUM KHER, SEIN HTUN
      Language: English and Shan
      Source/publisher: Humanitarian Affairs Research Project, Asian Research Center for Migration, Institute of Asian Studies, Chulalongkorn University
      Format/size: pdf (2.9K), 1MB (English text) 1.9MB (Guiding Principles in Shan)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.ibiblio.org/obl/docs3/Gauntlet-minusGP-ocr.pdf (minus Guiding Principles)
      http://www.ibiblio.org/obl/docs3/Gauntlet-GP_in_Shan.pdf (Guiding Principles in Shan)
      Date of entry/update: 03 September 2005


      Title: AFTERSHOCKS ALONG BURMA’S MEKONG
      Date of publication: 05 September 2003
      Description/subject: EXECUTIVE SUMMARY:- "In March 2002, Chinese demolition crews began blasting rapids and reefs along Burma’s Mekong river as part of the ADB-promoted Mekong Navigation Improvement Project, aimed to allow larger ships to travel the river throughout the year. There was no consultation with the over 22,000 Shan, Akha and Lahu peoples living along and relying on the Burmese section of the river. Suspended during the rainy season, full-scale blasting resumed between December 2002 and April 2003. During this time, Burma’s military regime, the State Peace and Development Council (SPDC), mobilized over 1,000 troops along the river, who imposed restrictions on the movement of villagers, forcibly conscripted porters, committed sexual violence and extorted funds from local communities. The SPDC also set up new military outposts to expand their control along the Mekong. Development of the Mekong has thus precipitated further SPDC militarization in eastern Shan State, and further oppression of local communities. It also fits into a development agenda of the Burmese military regime which is benefiting only a small elite, and contributing to environmental degradation and the impoverishment of the majority of the population. The number of SPDC troops in the area has more than tripled over the past decade, despite the supposed pacification of the area resulting from ceasefire agreements with most of the ethnic resistance groups since 1989. The ceasefire agreements, together with the opening up of Burma’s economy since 1988, have led to a process of inequitable and unsustainable development in Shan State, whereby the regime, ceasefire leaders and other business elites have profited from unbridled exploitation of the area’s natural resources, with disastrous effects on the environment. It is estimated that eastern Shan State has lost 50% of its forest cover since 1988. Wildlife and forest products are also diminishing rapidly. The military and business elites continue to profit from the drug trade, while the hill communities growing the opium remain in poverty, and the rate of drug addiction amongst local villagers, particularly along the Mekong River, one of the main drug trafficking routes, is soaring. Luxurious casinos for tourists have been built amidst areas of extreme poverty. In the absence of democracy in Burma, increased trade and tourism resulting from the Mekong Navigation Improvement Project will only further accelerate this harmful pattern of development in Eastern Shan State. The LNDO urges the governments of China, Laos and Thailand to immediately suspend the Mekong Navigation Improvement Project until proper environmental and social impact assessments are carried out with participation of affected communities. A prerequisite for this must be the restoration of genuine peace and democracy in Burma. LNDO therefore urges foreign governments and international funding agencies to withhold support for all development projects inside Burma’s Shan State until a democratic system of government is installed which allows local people genuine participation in decision-making about the development of their area..." CONTENTS:- 1. Introduction... 2. Executive Summary... 3. The Upper Mekong Navigation Improvement Project: - Background of the project; - Environmental concerns; - Burma’s role in the project... 4. Implementation of the project - December 2002 to April 2003: - Lack of consultation with local communities about the blasting; - Restrictions on villagers’ movements and resulting loss of livelihood; - SPDC military operation along the Mekong riverbank during the period of blasting; - Human rights abuses during the military operation - Compulsory gambling fairs... 5. Political context of the project: - A pattern of increased militarization in Eastern Shan State; - Expansion of SPDC control along the Mekong; - Forced withdrawal and disarming of militia groups along the Mekong riverbank (December 02); - “Cracking down” on the Wa (January - March 03)... 6. Reinforcing inequitable and unsustainable development processes: - Trade and infrastructure in the hands of military and business elites; - Unregulated natural resource exploitation; - Timber; - Wildlife and forest products; - Minerals; - Lack of sincere and sustainable drug-eradication programs; - Promotion of casino tourism; - Conclusion and Recommendations... Appendices: 1. List of villagers in eastern Shan State along the Mekong River; 2. Map of Tachilek township; 3. Map of Mong Yawng township. (these last two accessible only by clicking the hyperlink, not by scrolling down. For print-out, to keep maps on a single page, use the Shanland URL and print out the sections separately)
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: The Lahu National Development Organisation
      Format/size: html (153K)
      Alternate URLs: http://www.shanland.org/Environment/After%20Shock/contents.htm
      Date of entry/update: 07 September 2003


      Title: Charting the Exodus from Shan State: Patterns of Shan refugee flow into northern Chiang Mai province of Thailand 1997-2002
      Date of publication: May 2003
      Description/subject: "This report gives quantitative evidence in support of claims that there has been a large influx of Shans arriving into northern Thailand during the past 6 years who are genuine refugees fleeing persecution and not simply migrant workers. This data was based on interviews with 66,868 Shans arriving in Fang District of northern Chiang Mai province between June 1997 and December 2002, The data shows that almost all the new arrivals came from the twelve townships in Central Shan State where the Burmese military regime has carried out a mass forced relocation program since March 1996, and where the regime's troops have been perpetrating systematic human rights abuses against civilian populations. Higher numbers of arrivals came from townships such as Kunhing where a higher incidence of human rights abuses has been reported. Evidence also shows increases in refugee outflows from specific village tracts directly after large-scale massacres were committed by the regime's troops..."
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Shan Human Rights Foundation via Shan Herald Agency for news
      Format/size: pdf (896K) 14 pages
      Alternate URLs: http://www.shanland.org/oldversion/view-3471.htm
      Date of entry/update: 03 December 2010


      Title: Exiled at Home: Continued Forced Relocations and Displacement in Shan State
      Date of publication: 05 April 2000
      Description/subject: Continued Forced Relocations and Displacement in Shan State. "This report aims to provide a picture of the current situation in central Shan State, where the military junta ruling Burma has forcibly uprooted and destroyed over 1,400 villages and displaced well over 300,000 people since 1996. This campaign against civilians is still continuing after 4 brutal years, leaving much of the Shan population homeless. In this report, some of the villagers who both lived in relocation sites and hid in the jungle to avoid relocation describe their experiences. Further background and detail on the campaign to uproot the Shan can be found in the previous Karen Human Rights Group reports "Killing the Shan" (KHRG #98-03, 23/5/98) and "Forced Relocation in Central Shan State" (KHRG #96-23, 25/6/96), which are available online at this web site or by request from KHRG, and in the April 1998 report "Dispossessed: Forced Relocation and Extrajudicial Killings in Shan State" by the Shan Human Rights Foundation." ADDITIONAL KEYWORDS: forced resettlement, forced relocation, forced movement, forced displacement, forced migration, forced to move, displaced
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Regional & Thematic Reports (KHRG #2000-03)
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


      Title: Killing the Shan: The Continuing Campaign of Forced Relocation in Shan State (Information Update)
      Date of publication: 23 May 1998
      Description/subject: "This report aims to provide a picture of the current situation in central Shan State, where the military junta ruling Burma has forcibly uprooted and destroyed over 1,400 villages and displaced over 300,000 people since 1996. This campaign against civilians is still continuing, and the number of villages destroyed is increasing each month. In this report, some of the villagers who have fled in 1997 and 1998 describe their experiences. Further background and detail on the campaign to uproot the Shan can be found in the previous Karen Human Rights Group report "Forced Relocation in Central Shan State" (KHRG #96-23, 25/6/96), and in the April 1998 report "Dispossessed: Forced Relocation and Extrajudicial Killings in Shan State" by the Shan Human Rights Foundation ..." ..... ADDITIONAL KEYWORDS: forced resettlement, forced relocaton, forced movement, forced displacement, forced migration, forced to move, displaced
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Regional & Thematic Reports (KHRG #98-03)
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


      Title: Myanmar: Atrocities in the Shan State
      Date of publication: 15 April 1998
      Description/subject: The last two years have seen a profound deterioration in the human rights situation throughout the central Shan State in Myanmar. Hundreds of Shan civilians caught in the midst of counter-insurgency activities have been killed or tortured by the Burmese army. These abuses, occurring in a country which is closed to independent monitors, are largely unknown to the outside world. Denial of access for human rights monitors and journalists means that the full scale of the tragedy can not be accurately calculated. Therefore the information presented below represents only a part of the story.
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Amnesty International (ASA 16/05/98)
      Format/size: html
      Alternate URLs: http://www.amnesty.org/en/library/asset/ASA16/005/1998/en/f6c634ab-daea-11dd-903e-e1f5d1f8bceb/asa1... (French)
      http://www.amnesty.org/en/library/asset/ASA16/005/1998/en/e22f5c7f-daea-11dd-903e-e1f5d1f8bceb/asa1...
      http://www.amnesty.org/en/library/info/ASA16/005/1998
      Date of entry/update: 26 July 2010


      Title: Dispossessed
      Date of publication: April 1998
      Description/subject: A report on forced relocation and extrajudicial killings in Shan State, Burma. Since the publication of "Uprooting the Shan," the report by the SHRF detailing the forced relocation program carried out by the SLORC in Shan State during 1996, the SLORC military regime (recently renamed the State Peace and Development Council or SPDC) has been continuing to uproot more villages throughout 1997 and early 1998. Many of the relocation sites that were the results of 1996 relocations have been forced to move again. Human rights abuses such as mass killings, rape, torture and looting have been committed repeatedly by the SPDC troops against the displaced population. This has prompted the need to publish this updated report, containing more complete lists and maps of the relocated villages, and detailing the many extrajudicial killings committed by the military regime in the areas of relocation. We hope that this report will give a clearer picture to the international community of the devastating effects of the forced relocation program on the population of Central Shan State. KEYWORDS: forced resettlement, forced relocation, forced movement, forced displacement, forced migration, forced to move, displaced
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Shan Human Rights Foundation
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 25 November 2010


      Title: Forced Relocation in Central Shan State
      Date of publication: 25 June 1996
      Description/subject: "Forced relocations (all stories), killings (#2), shootings (#2,11,13), beatings (#8,9,10,14), rape (#7,8,17), burning houses (#1,2,4-7,14,17), burning houses with people inside (#1,2,14,17), looting/theft (#1,4,8,12,17), confiscation of relocated people's rice (#3,12), going back to farm (#1,3,4, 11,12), overcrowding at relocation sites (#1,5,7,12,17), effect on monks (#3,11,13,17), forced conscription for SLORC militia (#3), MTA (#8,11,13,15,17), PNA (#8), SSA (#13), opium (#15), life in Thailand (#15,17), northern Shan State (#13,15). Forced labour: At army camps (#1,3,13,15), as porters (#8,14,15), as road and village sentries (#12,13,17), on Army farms (#2,15), Nam Sang - Kun Hing road (#15,17), Chiang Tong - Kun Hing road (#15), Lai Kha - Pang Long road (#17), Lai Kha - Mong Hsu road (#13,17), Mong Kung - Tsipaw road (#10), Lai Kha - Mong Kungrailway (#7), Lashio - Mu Seh - Kyu Kote road (#15)..." ADDITIONAL KEYWORDS: forced resettlement, forced relocation, forced movement, forced displacement, forced migration, forced to move, displaced
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Regional & Thematic Reports (KHRG #96-23)
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


      Title: Forced Relocation in Central Shan State (Appendix)
      Date of publication: 25 June 1996
      Description/subject: "Appendix: List of Shan State villages known to be relocated. This list accompanies KHRG report "Forced Relocation in Central Shan State", #96-23, 25/6/96..." ADDITIONAL KEYWORDS: forced resettlement, forced relocation, forced movement, forced displacement, forced migration, forced to move, displaced
      Language: English
      Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
      Format/size: html
      Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


  • Study of internal displacement/forced migration in SPDC-controlled areas

    Individual Documents

    Title: Patrols, movement restrictions and forced labour in Toungoo District
    Date of publication: 28 September 2009
    Description/subject: "This report documents the situation for villagers in Toungoo District, both in areas under SPDC control and in areas contested by the KNLA and home to villagers actively evading SDPC control. For villagers in the former, movement restrictions, forced labour and demands for material support continue unabated, and continue to undermine their attempts to address basic needs. Villagers in hiding, meanwhile, report that the threat of Burma Army patrols, though slightly reduced, remains sufficient to disrupt farming and undermine food security. This report includes incidents occurring from January to August 2009..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Field Reports (KHRG #2009-F16)
    Format/size: pdf (850 KB)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2009/khrg09f16.html
    Date of entry/update: 28 October 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: Updates on coercive measures etc. in Burma -- 2007-12-30
    Date of publication: 30 December 2007
    Description/subject: These mixed pieces from various parts of Burma, including Mon areas, show that coercive measures and other problems which may lead to displacement are ongoing. Reporting by the Democratic Voice of Burma (DVB) and the Human Rights Foundation of Monland (HURFOM).
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: DVB, HURFOM
    Format/size: pdf (202K)
    Date of entry/update: 13 January 2008


    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


    Title: Documents on displacement and causes of displacement in Arakan State
    Date of publication: 26 April 2007
    Description/subject: A collection of documents on forced relocation/eviction and other coercive measures in Arakan State. This is an annex to the IDMC report, "Forced migration/internal displacement in Burma - with an emphasis on government-controlled areas"
    Author/creator: Andrew Bosson
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre
    Format/size: pdf (443K)
    Date of entry/update: 26 April 2007


    Title: Documents on displacement and causes of displacement in Chin State
    Date of publication: 26 April 2007
    Description/subject: A collection of documents on forced relocation/eviction and other coercive measures in Chin State. This is an annex to the IDMC report, "Forced migration/internal displacement in Burma - with an emphasis on government-controlled areas"
    Author/creator: Andrew Bosson
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre
    Format/size: pdf (306K)
    Date of entry/update: 26 April 2007


    Title: Documents on displacement and causes of displacement in Irrawaddy Division
    Date of publication: 26 April 2007
    Description/subject: A collection of documents on forced relocation/eviction and other coercive measures in Irrawaddy Division. This is an annex to the IDMC report, "Forced migration/internal displacement in Burma - with an emphasis on government-controlled areas".
    Author/creator: Andrew Bosson
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre
    Format/size: pdf (183K)
    Date of entry/update: 26 April 2007


    Title: Documents on displacement and causes of displacement in Kachin State
    Date of publication: 26 April 2007
    Description/subject: A collection of documents on forced relocation/eviction and other coercive measures in Kachin State. This is an annex to the IDMC report, "Forced migration/internal displacement in Burma - with an emphasis on government-controlled areas".
    Author/creator: Andrew Bosson
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre
    Format/size: pdf (161K)
    Date of entry/update: 26 April 2007


    Title: Documents on displacement and causes of displacement in Magwe Division
    Date of publication: 26 April 2007
    Description/subject: A collection of documents on forced relocation/eviction and other coercive measures in Magwe Division. This is an annex to the IDMC report, "Forced migration/internal displacement in Burma - with an emphasis on government-controlled areas".
    Author/creator: Andrew Bosson
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre
    Format/size: pdf (176K)
    Date of entry/update: 26 April 2007


    Title: Documents on displacement and causes of displacement in Mandalay Division
    Date of publication: 26 April 2007
    Description/subject: A collection of documents on forced relocation/eviction and other coercive measures in Mandalay Division. This is an annex to the IDMC report, "Forced migration/internal displacement in Burma - with an emphasis on government-controlled areas".
    Author/creator: Andrew Bosson
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre
    Format/size: pdf (170K)
    Date of entry/update: 16 April 2007


    Title: Documents on displacement and causes of displacement in Pegu Division (West)
    Date of publication: 26 April 2007
    Description/subject: A collection of documents on forced relocation/eviction and other coercive measures in Pegu Division (West). This is an annex to the IDMC report, "Forced migration/internal displacement in Burma - with an emphasis on government-controlled areas".
    Author/creator: Andrew Bosson
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre
    Format/size: pdf (98K)
    Date of entry/update: 15 April 2007


    Title: Documents on displacement and causes of displacement in Rangoon Division
    Date of publication: 26 April 2007
    Description/subject: A collection of documents on forced relocation/eviction and other coercive measures in Rangoon Division. This is an annex to the IDMC report, "Forced migration/internal displacement in Burma - with an emphasis on government-controlled areas".
    Author/creator: Andrew Bosson
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre
    Format/size: pdf (572K)
    Date of entry/update: 15 April 2007


    Title: Documents on displacement and causes of displacement in Sagaing Division
    Date of publication: 26 April 2007
    Description/subject: A collection of documents on forced relocation/eviction and other coercive measures in Sagaing Division. This is an annex to the IDMC report, "Forced migration/internal displacement in Burma - with an emphasis on government-controlled areas".
    Author/creator: Andrew Bosson
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre
    Format/size: pdf (224K)
    Date of entry/update: 26 April 2007


    Title: Documents on displacement and causes of displacement in Shan State ( Northern and Eastern)
    Date of publication: 26 April 2007
    Description/subject: A collection of documents on forced relocation/eviction and other coercive measures in Northern and Eastern Shan State. This is an annex to the IDMC report, "Forced migration/internal displacement in Burma - with an emphasis on government-controlled areas".
    Author/creator: Andrew Bosson
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre
    Format/size: pdf (274K)
    Date of entry/update: 26 April 2007


    Title: Documents on displacement and causes of displacement in urban and peri-urban areas of Burma
    Date of publication: 26 April 2007
    Description/subject: A collection of documents on forced relocation/eviction and other coercive measures in urban and peri-urban areas of Burma. This is an annex to the IDMC report, "Forced migration/internal displacement in Burma - with an emphasis on government-controlled areas".
    Author/creator: Andrew Bosson
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre
    Format/size: pdf (826K)
    Date of entry/update: 26 April 2007


    Title: Questionnaire on internal displacement in Burma
    Date of publication: October 2006
    Description/subject: This questionnaire was put to 560 refugees and migrant workers from Burma in neighbouring countries, in Novemeber-December 2006. This is an annex to the IDMC report, "Forced migration/internal displacement in Burma - with an emphasis on government-controlled areas".
    Author/creator: Andrew Bosson
    Language: English, Burmese
    Source/publisher: Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre
    Format/size: pdf (179K)
    Date of entry/update: 27 April 2007


    Title: Human Rights in Karen Areas of Burma
    Date of publication: 08 April 1996
    Description/subject: Briefing Notes by Kevin Heppner, Karen Human Rights Group April 8, 1996 "...Right now the opposition Karen National Union (KNU) is trying to conduct ceasefire negotiations with the SLORC (State Law & Order Restoration Council) military junta ruling Burma. Though the SLORC claims to be making every effort to bring peace to the country, they are still refusing to even discuss any political or human rights issues, and as a result the talks are making no progress. Many observers feel that the SLORC is not yet interested in a ceasefire, but wants to launch major attacks against the KNU first in order to weaken the KNU so it can be forced to accept what amount to surrender terms. Regardless of the negotiations, SLORC continues to worsen the human rights situation for villagers throughout Karen areas. In some areas, such as Taungoo and Nyaunglebin, systematic abuse of the civilian population is being used partly with the intention of driving the KNU towards a ceasefire deal on very bad terms. However, in most areas the abuses are increasing as a direct result of SLORC moving in and exerting stronger control in areas where KNU forces have been weakened or eliminated. Even in areas close to central Burma which SLORC has always strongly controlled, the human rights situation is worsening because more Army Battalions are being sent in to strengthen control over the civilian population, and because SLORC’s use of forced labour is increasing nationwide. The sections below give summaries of the human rights situation prevailing in some example Karen regions, starting from the northern tip of Karen State and moving southward several hundred kilometres to Tenasserim Division..."
    Author/creator: Kevin Heppner
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG Articles & Papers)
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 26 November 2009


    Title: Kachin state: land confiscation leads to displacement (June 2005)
    Description/subject: # Estimates suggest that there were around 67,000 internally displaced in the Kachin State prior to the signing of a ceasefire # While conflict-related displacement has decreased, the impoverishment of many rural dwellers following three decades of strife have led to significant rural displacement # Following the ceasefire, villagers have continued to be displaced by the Burmese Army, and as a consequence of natural resource-extraction # However, local groups have been formed in many displaced communities, and have started to work with local and international NGOs to reconstruct Kachin society
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Internal Displacement Monitoring Center (IDMC)
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 20 September 2010


  • Urban displacement

    Websites/Multiple Documents

    Title: EXTRACTS ON URBAN DISPLACEMENT IN BURMA FROM US STATE DEPARTMENT COUNTRY REPORTS ON HUMAN RIGHTS PRACTICES
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: US Dept. of State
    Format/size: html (34K)
    Date of entry/update: 08 February 2007


    Title: INDUSTRIAL ESTATES IN MYANMAR: 1995 – 2005
    Description/subject: "This compendium focuses on recent articles related to the development of industrial estates in the major urban centres of Myanmar. Although the clustering of traditional craft industries was common in towns and cities throughout Burma in the colonial era, it was not until the 1950s that modern industrial complexes such as those in the Pyay district of central Burma and in several parts of Rangoon began to take shape. The displacement of urban core residents and small enterprises that took place in the late fifties also led to the development of industrial sites in satellite towns on the east side of the capital. But it was only in the 1990s, following the opening to privately owned industries by Burma’s military government, that the push to develop industrial zones throughout the country began in earnest. Today there are more than fifty industrial parks scattered throughout the country, about half of them in the area around the national capital. Some, like the new complexes at Indagaw near Bago and the two near Kyaukse in Upper Myanmar are exclusively reserved for state-owned factories. Others are being developed with foreign capital for foreign-owned enterprises or foreign companies that have entered into joint-venture agreements with holding companies of the military government. Most of the new industrial estates are being developed by the Department of Human Settlement and Housing Development of the Ministry of Construction specifically for privately owned industries. Over 6,000 of the 50,000 privately owned manufacturing enterprises in the country are now accommodated in these zones. Recently, several privately owned land development companies have begun their own industrial parks in the Yangon area in collaboration with the DHSHD. The articles in the compendium are arranged in chronological order with the most recently published at the top of the list. The articles have been selected on the basis that they are representative of initiatives and challenges faced in the rapidly developing industrial zones of Myanmar. Internet search engines such as Google will yield many more references on any one of the many zones named here. Researchers should bear in mind that place names in Myanmar are frequently spelled in a variety of ways in English. Thus, the use of different spellings as search words may result in a considerable increase in the amount of information generated."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Courier Information Services
    Format/size: html (445K), Word (558K), pdf (786K)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.ibiblio.org/obl/docs2/INDUSTRIAL%20ESTATES%20IN%20MYANMAR.doc
    http://www.ibiblio.org/obl/docs2/INDUSTRIAL%20ESTATES%20IN%20MYANMAR.pdf
    Date of entry/update: 17 April 2005


    Individual Documents

    Title: Police roundup pushes homeless people out of Pyay City, Bago Division, August 2012
    Date of publication: 08 July 2013
    Description/subject: "This report is based on information submitted to KHRG in September 2012 by a community member from Yangon Region trained by KHRG to monitor human rights conditions. It describes events occurring in Pyay City, Bago Division, on August 3rd 2012 when City Development Committee staff and policemen carried out a nighttime city-sweep to remove homeless families. The authorities used a public rubbish truck to forcibly detain the families and then to transport them to Okshittpin Forest, which is halfway between Pyay City and the border with Rakhine State. The families were abandoned in the forest during a monsoon rain, and were threatened not to return to Pyay. Both children and adults were threatened with prison if they returned. However, the families did return to Pyay, after they encountered several problems along the way, including being without food to eat for two days, not having baby formula for infants, inadequate shelter under which to sleep, and most of the younger children became sick. Once they returned to Pyay City, the families were assisted with medicine. Pocket money and education was provided to the children by a local organization."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: html, pdf (85K)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/sites/default/files/khrg13b43.pdf
    Date of entry/update: 10 August 2013


    Title: Forced relocation in Burma’s former capital
    Date of publication: 22 April 2008
    Description/subject: The population of Yangon has experienced coercive resettlement on a truly massive scale under military rule..."With its ‘huts to apartments’ scheme, the SPDC claims to have placed many squatters in new multi-storey housing on the site of or near their former dwellings. However, forced relocation in Yangon, Mandalay and other cities in central Burma continues today; victims of fires, for example, are not allowed to rebuild their old neighbourhoods and residential areas are cleared to make way for new roads, apartments and shopping centres. This is an environment where the land rights of ordinary citizens, whatever their ethnicity, remain unrecognised..."
    Author/creator: Donald M Seekins
    Language: English, Burmese
    Source/publisher: "Forced Migration Review" No. 30
    Format/size: pdf (Burmese, 143K; English, 304K)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.fmreview.org/FMRpdfs/FMR30Burmese/10-1.pdf
    Date of entry/update: 30 November 2008


    Title: SPDC Army atrocities in Ler Muh Bplaw village tract in the words of a local resident
    Date of publication: 24 October 2007
    Description/subject: "While the State Peace and Development Council (SPDC) continues its diplomatic manoeuvring claiming a 'return to normalcy' and courting favour with United Nations special envoy to Burma, Ibrahim Gambari, attacks on villages and military atrocities in northern Karen State have continued unabated. Nevertheless, local villagers continue to resist such abuse and speak out, where possible, against its daily perpetration. The report below comprises a translated account of the situation in Ler Muh Bplaw village tract, Lu Thaw township, Papun District written not by a KHRG researcher or any other of the organisation's staff, but rather by a local village head from Ler Muh Bplaw village tract who testifies in his own words to the atrocities that continue to undermine rural lives and livelihoods. The report discusses SPDC operations including attacks on villages and the killing of civilians as well as the state of health and education for the communities of Ler Muh Bplaw village tract. The text of the report is supported with photographs taken by KHRG field researchers..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Field Report (KHRG #2007-F9)
    Format/size: pdf (517 MB)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2007/khrg07f9.html
    Date of entry/update: 07 November 2009


    Title: Dead Set on Helping
    Date of publication: December 2003
    Description/subject: "Burma’s poverty means that even providing funerals for loved ones can be difficult if not impossible. But a new social welfare association is lending a helping hand... Accompanied by some poor people, a famous Burmese movie star carries a coffin in Rangoon. In the coffin is the corpse of a poor man who is unrelated to the actor. This is not a scene for a film; it’s real. And to many people it’s amazing, because it’s so unheard of. The movie star, Kyaw Thu, has participated in many funerals as a sort of gravedigger, and he is vice president of a social welfare association known as the Free Funeral Services Society (FFSS)..."
    Author/creator: Htain Linn
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: "The Irrawaddy" Vol. 11, No. 10, December 2003
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 14 February 2004


    Title: Residents Speak Out Against Forced Relocation
    Date of publication: 02 April 2002
    Description/subject: "Homeowners in Rangoon's Kamaryut Township were told by military officials last week to evacuate their homes by April 5 or face arrest. The residents were not given any reasons for the forced relocation nor have they been offered any compensation thus far, Kamaryut residents told The Irrawaddy..."
    Author/creator: Kyaw Zwa Moe
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: "The Irrawaddy"
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 24 January 2007


    Title: INDUSTRIAL BELT TAKES SHAPE AROUND CAPITAL
    Date of publication: 17 January 1997
    Description/subject: "...Sources say the industrial zones are creating another headache: forced relocations of villagers. The source says that farmers have been forced to give up their prized land in Mingaladon north of Rangoon to make way for Mitsui's industrial park. "There is no negotiation between the farmers and the government. The govenrment simply puts up a sign saying, 'Everybody must move by this date.' Everybody must obey it or else. Villages are silently angry but they don't dare protest." Adds another local resident, explaining the public mentality about reallocations, "We have to obey the king. When the king says move, we have to move."..."
    Author/creator: B.J. Lee
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: "The Nation"
    Format/size: html (22K)
    Date of entry/update: 25 January 2007


    Title: Urban Development
    Date of publication: 01 January 1997
    Description/subject: "RIP: Rest In Pieces"... On Nov 14th 1996, the Slorc posted a notice at the gate of Kyandaw Cemetery giving relatives one month's notice to move the remains to a new site at Shwe Nyaung-bin, two hours drive from Rangoon. Kyandaw cemetery is located on 50-70 acres of what has become prime real estate in downtown Rangoon, near Hantha-waddy intersection. Both Burmese and foreigners are buried there of Christian, Muslim, Hindu, and Buddhist faiths. Rumours abound in Rangoon as to what the military government wants the land for; a casino to be built by Khun Sa, a hotel to be built with foreign investment, or, a Japanese shopping center. Whatever is planned for this land remains unknown as the Slorc refuse to specify at this stage. A Slorc spokesman, Major Hla Min stated on a recent Asian Business News television interview: "Yangon has changed, and the location of the cemetery, once it was probably on the outskirts of Yangon, but today its almost in the center of the city, so naturally it has to be relocated." ..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: "The Irrawaddy" Vol. 5, No. 1
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 24 January 2007


    Title: HUMAN SETTLEMENTS SECTOR REVIEW, UNION OF MYANMAR
    Date of publication: 1991
    Description/subject: The oft-cited UN Habitat report on the 1989-1990 urban resettlement programme in Burma which the report estimates affected 1.5 million people (16 percent of the urban population). "...During the early months of 1990 international attention was focused on the Yangon squatter clearance and resettlement programme launched by the Government in 1989. The Mission found that the programme is not limited to Yangon, but has broad national coverage. The scale and characteristics of the land-development and other works was considered by the Mission to be of such overwhelming significance to the present and future urban situation that the Mission concentrated its resources on attempting to assemble a comprehensive record of the programme and assessing the impacts and implications. The programme consists of: (a) land development for sites-and- services resettlement schemes, and for complete housing units for public servants; (b) new and improved roads; (c) urban rail transport; (d) road, rail and pedestrian bridges; (e) parks and gardens; (f) redevelopment for commercial and residential uses of sites cleared as a result of resettlement and fires; (g) clean-up campaigns, building renovations, and repainting of facades; and (h) rehabilitation of drains and water bodies. For the size of the overall country population and for an urban population of less than 10 million, the scale of works within the time period allocated is probably unprecedented internationally. Based on visits to selected towns, analysis of maps and layout plans, and the data supplied by GAD and HD, the Mission estimates that the total population affected by the resettlement and new housing components is in the order of 1.5 million, or 4 per cent of the total population, and 16 percent of the urban population. Roughly 50 per cent of this number is in Yangon, Mandalay, Taunggyi and Bago, all centres visited by the Mission..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: The United Nations Centre for Human Settlements (Habitat)
    Format/size: pdf (2.1MB)
    Date of entry/update: 10 January 2007


    Title: Interviews in Satellite Villages
    Date of publication: 05 July 1990
    Description/subject: from Dawn, Vol. 2 No. 13, July 1990... "Recently, a report, with, photos was received from friends inside Burma. The report contains interviews with people who were recently relocated, under duress, to areas around Rangoon called "New Towns". Few such reports have been received, so DAWN wishes to give extra space in this issue to this reality of life in Burma today..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Dawn
    Format/size: pdf (32K - text; 246K - with photos)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.ibiblio.org/obl/docs4/Satellite_interviews_with_pics.pdf
    Date of entry/update: 04 March 2007