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BURMESE TROOPS DESTROY PADDY FIELDS
November 24, 1998
BURMESE TROOPS DESTROY PADDY FIELDS IN SOUTHERN BURMA
Burmese soldiers destroyed paddy fields near Tavoy in southern
Burma at the beginning of this month to deny the Karen National
Union (KNU) access to rice crops.
According to sources in the town of Tavoy, Tenasserim Division, a
column of 200 Burmese troops launched a special operation between
6-8 November to burn all crops farmed in the villages in the east
of the town. The paddy fields belonged to villagers from Kami,
Gaungsay Chaung, Kahtaungni, Kalitgyi, Sarmutaw, Seikku and
Kyauktwin villages. Local sources said that the operation was
launched in response to a successful drive by the KNU attacking
Burmese troops in the area.
Assistant Foreign Affairs Secretary of the All Burma Students'
Democratic Front, Zaw Min, said that the destruction occurred
just before the villagers were to harvest their crops. "This
will have an enormous effect on the villagers because they have
no means of supporting themselves other than their crops."
The soldiers who took part in the destruction of the fields are
from Infantry Regiments 104 and 208, under the command of the
Coastal Military Region. The devastation of the fields marks the
beginning of the army's annual dry-season offensive against the
KNU. The KNU is one of two ethnic groups not to have entered into
a cease-fire agreement with the Burmese military regime.
All Burma Students' Democratic Front
For more information please contact 01-253 9082, 01-654 4984