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Children's rights: reports of violations in Burma against more than one ethnic group

Websites/Multiple Documents

Title: Watchlist on Children and Armed Conflict - Burma/Myanmar page
Date of publication: 01 May 2013
Description/subject: Press Releases, UN reports and actions and other documents and updates from 2003 on children and armed conflict in Myanmar...includes links to Security Council material
Language: English, Burmese/ ျမန္မာဘာသာ
Source/publisher: Watchlist on Children and Armed Conflict
Format/size: html, pdf
Alternate URLs: http://watchlist.org/
Date of entry/update: 04 August 2015


Title: Children/Youth (Category Archive from Burmanet News)
Description/subject: Articles on this category from the collections of Burmanet News
Language: English
Source/publisher: Burmanet News
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 29 February 2016


Title: Coalition to Stop the Use of Child Soldiers - Burma/Myanmar page
Description/subject: Reports (text and video), international standards.... "Children in Myanmar have been widely used in armed conflict by both state armed forces and non-state armed groups. Despite a minimum age of 18 for military recruitment, over the years many hundreds of boys have been recruited, often forcibly into the national army (Tatmadaw Kyi) and deployed to areas where state forces have been fighting armed opposition groups. Border guard forces, composed of former members of armed opposition groups and formally under the command of the Myanmar military, also have under-18s in their ranks. In June 2012, after protracted negotiations with the UN, the Myanmar government signed up to an action plan under which it has committed to release all under-18s present from Tatmadaw Kyi and border guard forces. Child recruitment and use by armed opposition groups is also reported. These include: the Democratic Karen Buddhist Army (DKBA), Kachin Independence Army (KIA), Karen National Union/Karen National Liberation Army (KNU/KNLA), Karenni National Progressive Party/Karenni Army (KNPP/KA), Shan State Army South (SSA-S), United Wa State Army (UWSA). The KNU/KNLA and KNPP/KA have sought to conclude action plans on child soldiers with the UN, but the UN has been prevented from doing so by the Government of Myanmar. "Our current work in Myanmar aims to: Identify legal, policy and practical measures needed to end child recruitment and use by Tatmadaw Kyi and border guard forces, and to advocate for full and effective implementation of the action plan. Seek tangible progress on armed opposition groups’ compliance with international standards on child soldiers..."
Language: English, Burmese (ျမန္မာဘာသာ)
Source/publisher: Coalition to Stop the Use of Child Soldiers
Format/size: html, pdf
Alternate URLs: http://www.child-soldiers.org/
Date of entry/update: 04 August 2015


Title: Committee on the Rights of the Child (CRC) - Myanmar
Description/subject: The state party reports, CRC Concluding Observations, Summary Records etc.
Language: English
Source/publisher: United Nations
Format/size: html, pdf, Word
Date of entry/update: 14 February 2004


Title: Karen Human Rights Group - search for "Children"
Description/subject: 52 results (December 2009) from a search for "Children" in the drop-down menu of Database Search under Advanced Search -- KHRG home page
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: html, pdf
Date of entry/update: 15 December 2009


Title: UNICEF Myanmar Page
Description/subject: The most substantial material on the site is in the Media Centre, and includes: a pdf document in Burmese: "Questions and Answers on HIV and AIDS"... "The State of the World's Children 2005 - Children under threat" in English, (and in the same box a link to what should be a Burmese version, but since this is 56 pages rather than the 164 of the English, I have doubts)... "Progress For Children A Child Survival Report Card" in English, with The Foreword, Child Survival, and the East Asia and Pacific sections in Burmese... a "Myanmar Reporter's Manual" (65 pages)in English and Burmese versions: "This manual provides instruction on international-standard reporting skills, child-focused reporting and ethics for Myanmar journalists in accordance with the Convention on the Rights of the Child." then there is a glossy, 28-page "UNICEF in Myanmar - Protecting Lives, Nurturing Dreams" in English.....In the For Children and Youth section is an illustrated and simplified aticle-by-article version of the Convention on the Rights of the Child and a couple of illustrated online books for young children and their families in English and Burmese. Under Youth Web Links there English language animations (I suppose) called "Top 10 Cartoons for Children's Rights" but I could not get them to work. Also links to several other UNICEF and UN young people's sites. The "Activities" and "Real Lives" sections deal with UNICEF's activities in the country.
Language: English
Source/publisher: UNICEF
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


Title: United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) - Myanmar search
Description/subject: These results are for 2015. Change search options in column on the left...Search for Myanmar. 464 results (November 2001). 819 in May 2005, 1749 in 2015. Images and substantial documents.
Language: English
Source/publisher: United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF)
Format/size: html
Alternate URLs: http://www.unicef.org
Date of entry/update: 04 August 2015


Individual Documents

Title: Ongoing Underage Recruitment and Use by the Myanmar Military and Non - State Armed Groups
Date of publication: March 2016
Description/subject: [Briefing for the UN Secretary General’s Annual Report on Children and Armed Conflict - March 2016] "Myanmar’s November 2015 Parliamentary election resulted in a sweeping victory for the National League of Democracy (NLD), generating hopes that the new NLD-led government will bring about a demonstrable improvement in the country’s human rights situation. Child Soldiers International has documented the widespread recruitment and use of children as soldiers in Myanmar for over a decade, and believes that the new government needs to make a renewed commitment to ensure that the Tatmadaw Kyi (Myanmar military) becomes a child-free army. Almost four years since the UN and the Myanmar government signed a Joint Action Plan (JAP) to end the recruitment and use of children in June 2012, children continue to be present in the ranks of the Tatmadaw Kyi as well as non-state armed groups (NSAGs), although recent trends indicate that active recruitment of children by the Tatmadaw kyi appears to have significantly reduced. The Tatmadaw Kyi discharged 146 children in three separate releases in 2015, and a further 46 on 12 March 2016, bringing the total number of children discharged since the signing of the JAP to 745. Due to an absence of comprehensive monitoring, it is not currently possible to determine the number of children present in the ranks of the Border Guard Forces (BGF). However, the BGF discharged one child in 2015, indicating that other children may also remain in the ranks. Nonetheless, children continue to be unlawfully recruited into the Tatmadaw Kyi; 210 cases of “suspected minors” were reported by the Country Task Force for Monitoring and Reporting (CTFMR) for age verification in 2015. The CTFMR received complaints on these cases through its public phone line, the forced labour complaint mechanism of the International Labour Organization (ILO) and community monitoring initiatives. Ongoing armed conflict in Kachin and Shan states, related insecurity and high levels of attrition have ensured that the Tatmadaw Kyi is under pressure to maintain its troop strength, thereby necessitating ongoing recruitment, including of children. Child Soldiers International also received reports of increased recruitment by NSAGs, including of children, in the backdrop of escalating conflict between the Tatmadaw Kyi and the Kachin Independence Army (KIA), Shan State Progressive Party / Shan State Army North, and the Palaung State Liberation Front / Ta’ang National Liberation Army (TNLA); and between joint Myanmar military-Restoration Council of Shan State/Shan State Army South forces and the TNLA since September 2015. This ‘recruitment economy’ has contributed to the creation of a network of informal recruitment agents (civilian brokers), who receive payments for delivering new recruits to the Tatmadaw Kyi. Over the course of 2015, the use of civilian brokers continued to be reported with no movement to clarify the legal avenues to hold civilian brokers accountable. It has also generated pressure on 2 recruiting officers to ignore national legal restrictions of the minimum recruitment age, in a context where adults are unwilling to volunteer and where accountability mechanisms designed to deter underage recruitment have been lax. Despite welcome measures to spread greater awareness about the unlawfulness of underage recruitment, including through the operationalising of a more centralised system for recruitment, children continue to be among those forcibly recruited, and remain easier to trick and more susceptible to pressure to enlist than adults. Where children from economically deprived or troubled backgrounds have volunteered for enlistment, the absence of rigorous enforcement of safeguards has facilitated their recruitment..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Child Soldiers International
Format/size: pdf (218K)
Alternate URLs: http://www.child-soldiers.org/research_report_reader.php?id=875
Date of entry/update: 08 April 2016


Title: You Die with It or You Fight for It
Date of publication: 09 December 2013
Description/subject: "Khaing Hla Pyaint is an incredibly determined young Arakanese man who decided that whatever it takes, he will work for his country and help his people. On a long journey from Arakan State near Bangladeshi border to the Thai border town of Mae Sot, Khaing Hla Pyaint experienced deportation, imprisonment, and torture, until he could finally reach his goal and become a soldier in the jungles of Karen State. Despite the hardship, Khaing Hla Pyaint has never regretted the choices he has made. Why was he so determined to work for his country? How did his childhood experiences and further education make him realise he wants to help his people? Read the second part of the unbelievable story of this young dedicated soldier and learn how he feels about the root causes of the conflict, and how he thinks the international community and donors can promote change instead of funding more arms and training for the Burma Army."...See the Alternate link for part 2.
Language: English
Source/publisher: Burma Link
Format/size: pdf
Alternate URLs: http://www.burmalink.org/my-aim-in-life-is-to-work-for-my-country-but-i-ended-up-on-a-fishing-boat/
Date of entry/update: 21 March 2016


Title: Coercion, Cruelty and Collateral Damage: An assessment of grave violations of children’s rights in conflict zones of southern Burma
Date of publication: January 2012
Description/subject: "Research by the Women and Child Rights Project (WCRP) has demonstrated that grave violations of children’s rights continue to occur in southern Burma despite the creation, by the United Nations, of the Monitoring and Reporting Mechanism (MRM) pursuant to United Nations Security Council (UNSC) Resolution 1612 on Children and Armed Conflict passed in 2005. The Burmese government has failed to meet the time-bound action plan under Resolution 1612, demonstrated by the fact that WCRP researchers found numerous accounts of ‘grave violations’ under United Nations Security Council’s Resolution 1612 on children and armed conflict. These violations, committed by Burmese soldiers against children in southern Burma, include recruitment of child soldiers, killing and maiming, rape and sexual abuse, and forced labor. Though the Burmese government agreed to the implementation of a monitoring and reporting mechanism (MRM), pursuant to Resolution 1612, to report on instances of these grave violations, WCRP has found that abuses have continued unabated since 2005. The data detailed below provide evidence of widespread and systematic abuses, the vast majority of which were committed by soldiers from the Tatmadaw, the Burmese military. These confirmed cases of grave violations, taken from just 15 villages in two townships, committed over a period of 5 years, suggest that the Burmese government has failed to live up to its obligations under international law to protect children during situations of armed conflict. Limitations imposed by the Burmese government on the UN country team has made it difficult for them to receive, or verify, accounts of grave violations, in turn preventing the MRM from making a noticeable impact on the continued widespread abuse of children in southern Burma. WCRP’s data strongly suggests that the real numbers of abuses against children is vastly greater than officially recognized. Additionally, despite the fact that WCRP’s primary research covered only the period from 2005 through November 2010, recent updated reports suggest that all of the violations documented by WCRP have continued to occur over the course of the past year. Despite the political changes that may be underway in Naypyidaw, children in areas where armed conflict is ongoing continue to suffer grave violations. Thus, the international community must take further action to ensure that the MRM can effectively protect the rights of Burma’s children and realize the objective put forth in Resolution 1612, an end to the grave violations of children’s rights..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Woman and Child Rights Project (WCRP)
Format/size: pdf (1.1MB - OBL version; 2.1MB - original)
Alternate URLs: http://rehmonnya.org/archives/2182
Date of entry/update: 27 January 2012


Title: Burma Human Rights Yearbook 2008 - Chapter 16: Rights of the Child
Date of publication: 23 November 2009
Description/subject: "Children comprise a highly vulnerable segment of any society and this is especially the case in a country marred by conflict, such as Burma. In the case of Burma especially, children form a large percentage of the total population, with UNICEF estimating the under-18 population of Burma to be 15,772,000 out of a total population of 48,379,000 in 2006. Thus, children comprise around 33 percent of the people of Burma.1 Despite Burma having ratified the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) in 1991 under the then ruling State Law and Order Restoration Council (SLORC), the rights of children in Burma today remain as tenuous as ever. Over the course of 2008, various civil society actors such as exile media and International Non-Governmental Organisations (INGOs) provided accounts of the rights of children being violated both in urban and rural environments. The CRC states clearly that children require “special safeguards and care, including appropriate legal protection.” This proved to be a luxury that was not afforded to Burma’s children over the course of 2008. The Burmese regime was furthermore in breach of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) in its treatment of the rights of children throughout the year, in another example of the State Peace and Development Council showing scant concern for either the rights of its citizenry or for the stipulations of international law. Patterns of abuse in Burma are strongly connected to patterns of military control, thus the nature of abuse which children face in Burma largely depends on the extent to which they live under State Peace and Development Council (SPDC) military control. For those living under consolidated SPDC control, the intensive militarisation of Burmese society, which relies on abusive mechanisms of civilian control and exploitation of their resources, undermines almost every aspect of children’s rights. Militarisation requires extensive national budgetary spending on the military. Such expenditures come at the expense of other areas, such as health and education. According to figures released by the International Institute for Strategic Studies in 2007, the SPDC was spending around 40 percent of the national budget on the military, opposed to 0.4 percent and 0.5 percent on health and education respectively..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Human Rights Docmentation Unit (HRDU)
Format/size: pdf (1.23MB)
Date of entry/update: 06 December 2009


Title: Burma Human Rights Yearbook 2007 - Chapter 13: Rights of the Child
Date of publication: September 2008
Description/subject: "...As can be seen in all of the chapters of this, the current, as well as in all previous editions of the Burma Human Rights Yearbook, all human rights abuses committed in Burma which affect the general population have additional impacts upon the lives of children. For instance, children in Burma often become orphans when their parents are killed, and when they lose their parents, many children also lose their primary (if not only) benefactors, caregivers, and educators. Moreover, the family unit breaks down, causing often disastrous consequences on the development of the child. Similarly, whenever adults are subjected to arrest or exploited as forced labour, their children again suffer in much the same way as just described. Moreover, issues which have adverse affects upon the health and well being of the general population have further supplementary impacts upon the health of children. Furthermore, in many cases of economic hardship, children are often pulled out of school and sent to work in the informal market, on the streets or to beg so that they can help support the family, yet all of these environments increase their exposure to illicit drugs, petty crime, violence, the risk of arrest and detention, sexual abuse, and exploitation.5 One of the most pervasive features of contemporary Burma is the level to which its society has been militarized. It is within this context the usual mechanisms that normally protect children can be undermined or neglected due to prioritization of alternative goals. Of all the areas in which Burmese children grow up, perhaps the political environment of greatest concern is that related to children in ethnic and armed conflict areas, for it are in these areas that children face the most severe and systematic abuses..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Human Rights Docmentation Unit (HRDU)
Format/size: pdf (659K)
Date of entry/update: 15 December 2009


Title: Nirgendwo gibt es so viele Kindersoldaten
Date of publication: November 2007
Description/subject: Was die Ausbeutung Minderjähriger angeht, ist Myanmar die unangefochtene Nummer eins. Ein Gespräch mit Ralf Willinger, Referent für Kinderrechte bei terre des hommes, Rolle der Kindersoldaten bei den Aufständen 2007; Rekrutierung von Kindersoldaten; gesetzliche Regelungen zu Kindersoldaten; Interview with Ralf Willinger; Role of child-soldiers during the uprisings 2007; recruitment of child soldiers; laws and reglementations on child soldiers
Author/creator: Helen Sibum
Language: German, Deutsch
Source/publisher: Amnesty International / Terre des Hommes
Format/size: Html (20kb)
Date of entry/update: 27 May 2008


Title: Burma Human Rights Yearbook 2006 - Chapter 6: Rights of the Child
Date of publication: 25 June 2007
Description/subject: Introduction; Children in Armed Conflict: Violence against Children; Abduction of Children... Child Soldiers: Child Soldiers in Armed Ethnic Groups; Conscription of Child Soldiers... Sexual Assault against Children... Right to Education: Education in Ethnic Minority and Conflict Areas; Gender Equality... Right to Health: Children and HIV/AIDS... Arrest and Detention of Children: Children in Prison with Their Mothers... Child Labour: Children and Forced Labour... Child Trafficking.
Language: English
Source/publisher: Human Rights Documentation Unit of the NCGUB (HRDU)
Format/size: pdf (465K)
Alternate URLs: http://www.ibiblio.org/obl/docs4/HRDU2006.pdf
Date of entry/update: 13 July 2007


Title: Burma Human Rights Yearbook 2005 - Chapter 6: Rights of the Child
Date of publication: July 2006
Description/subject: "...Years of ongoing civil war and poor governance have led to widespread poverty, low levels of education, poor healthcare, and systematic human rights abuses. Children, who comprise approximately 40 percent of the population, are disproportionately affected by all of these factors. Decreased national spending on education has resulted in the deterioration of the quality of primary education, coinciding with increased illiteracy and dropout rates. Similarly, lack of spending on healthcare has resulted in Burma’s healthcare system being ranked 190 out of 191 countries by the World Health Organization in 2000. According to UNICEF, of the 1.3 million children born every year in Burma, more than 92,500 will die before they reach age one. The majority of infant mortality has been attributed to insufficient medical knowledge and services. As poverty has consumed the population, children are frequently required to contribute to their family’s livelihood either by participating in family businesses, seeking external employment, or fulfilling a family’s obligations to participate in regime forced labor projects. Children are not exempted from serving as porters for the military or being recruited to serve in the armed forces. Ethnic minority children are particularly vulnerable, not only suffering from severe discrimination but also suffering from the consequences of protracted armed conflict. Children living in ethnic minority areas, like other members of their communities, are subject to physical injury, torture, rape, murder, forced labor, and forced relocation as the SPDC attempts to suppress any opposition, both armed and unarmed. Children in these areas also often witness atrocities carried out against their family and community members; endure separation from their families and communities; and suffer from extremely limited access to healthcare, education, housing, and food. There can be no improvement in the situation for the children of Burma without a radical change in the regime and progress towards democracy..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Human Rights Docmentation Unit (HRDU)
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 15 December 2009


Title: Burma Human Rights Yearbook 2004 - Chapter 6: Rights of the Child
Date of publication: August 2005
Description/subject: Years of ongoing civil war and poor governance have led to widespread poverty, low levels of education, poor healthcare, and systematic human rights abuses. Children, who comprise approximately 40% of the population, are disproportionately affected by all of these factors. Decreased government spending on education has resulted in the deterioration of standards of primary education, which have coincided with increased illiteracy and dropout rates. Likewise, lack of spending on healthcare has resulted in Burma’s healthcare system being ranked 190 out of 191 countries by the World Health Organization in 2000. According to UNICEF, of the 1.3 million children born every year in Burma, more than 92,500 will die before they reach one year of age. The majority of infant mortality has been attributed to insufficient medical knowledge and attention. As poverty has consumed the population, children are frequently required to contribute to their family’s livelihood either by participating in family businesses, seeking external employment, or fulfilling a family’s obligations to participate in government forced labor projects. Children are not exempted from serving as porters for the military or being recruited to serve in the armed forces, fighting against ethnic minority populations and forced to perpetrate human rights abuses themselves. Ethnic minority children are often more vulnerable due to the fact that ongoing civil war is fought in ethnic minority areas. In addition to contending with the discrepancy between access to social services available to the military and civilian populations, ethnic minorities face the more direct consequences of internal conflict. Children living in ethnic minority areas, like other members of their communities, continued to be subjected to physical injury, torture, rape, murder, forced labor, and forced relocation as the government attempts to suppress any opposition, both armed and unarmed. Children in these areas are also forced to witness atrocities carried out against their family and community members; to endure separation from their families and communities; and to suffer from extremely limited access to healthcare, education, housing, and food. There can be no improvement in the situation for the children of Burma without a radical change in the government and progress towards democracy.
Language: English
Source/publisher: Human Rights Docmentation Unit (HRDU)
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 15 December 2009


Title: Burma Human Rights Yearbook 2003-2004 - Chapter 6: Rights of the Child
Date of publication: November 2004
Description/subject: "...A large segment of Burma’s population is made up of children, with 42% under the age of 18 years. While according to traditional culture children are valued and cherished in Burma, the ruling military dictatorship does not regard children’s development and welfare as a priority. As Burma became a signatory party to the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) on 15 August 1991, they are bound to uphold its mandates. The CRC affirms that every child has the right to protection, the right to life, and the right to survival and development. The CRC also specifically refers to the protection of children in armed conflict and mandates that no child under 15 should take part in hostilities; that children should not be separated from their parents except for their own well-being; that States should protect children from harm and neglect; and that all children should be entitled to the rights enshrined in the convention, without discrimination The SPDC, (then SLORC) established a new Child Law on 14 July 1993, in order to "implement the rights of the child recognized in the Convention." The child law states, "The State recognized that every child has the right to survival, development, protection and care, and to achieve active participation in the community." (Chapter 5, paragraph 8) However there is striking evidence that the SPDC continually flouts both the CRC and their own Child Law. Almost half of the state budget is allocated to the army, despite the fact that the country is not exposed to any external threats, leaving very little for the vital education and health care systems. Decades of military mismanagement of the economy has resulted in a catastrophic economic situation and is forcing the vast majority of parents to rely on the contribution of their children working in order to feed their families. The worst forms of child labor – whether in the army, the construction industry, domestic work, the mines or elsewhere – are present throughout Burma. Children are by no means exempt from the forced labor imposed on hundreds of thousands of the Burmese population by the Tatmadaw or armed forces. Moreover, the SPDC continues unabated to forcibly recruit children into the army, some as young as eleven years old. Boys are not the only ones exposed to abuse by the military as young girls are frequently forced to serve as porters and sexual slaves for army troops. Ethnic minority children are often more vulnerable to abuse due to the fact that the on-going civil war is often fought in ethnic minority areas. In addition to contending with the discrepancy between access to social services available to the military and civilian populations, ethnic minorities face the more direct consequences of internal conflict. Children living in ethnic minority areas, like other members of their communities, continued to be subjected to physical injury, torture, rape, murder, forced labor, and forced relocation. Children in these areas were also forced to witness atrocities carried out against their family and community members; to endure separation from their families and communities; and to suffer from extremely limited access to health care, education, housing, and food. There can be no improvement in the situation for the children of Burma without a radical change in the government and progress towards democracy..."
Source/publisher: Human Rights Docmentation Unit (HRDU)
Format/size: English
Date of entry/update: 15 December 2009


Title: End the use of children as soldiers in Burma
Date of publication: June 2004
Language: Burmese/ ျမန္မာဘာသာ
Source/publisher: Human Rights Education Institute of Burma (HREIB)
Format/size: pdf (2.97 MB)
Alternate URLs: http://books.equalitymyanmar.org/index.php/item/end-the-use-of-children-as-soldiers-in-burma
Date of entry/update: 16 February 2005


Title: Burma Human Rights Yearbook 2002-03: Children's Rights
Date of publication: October 2003
Description/subject: "...Burma has seen almost constant conflict since independence from Britain in 1948. Internal civil war and poor governance has brought about widespread poverty, poor health care, low educational standards and systematic human rights abuses. Children, who are among the most vulnerable members of society, have been disproportionately affected by all these factors. Decreasing levels of government spending on education have caused standards of primary education to deteriorate, with corresponding rises in illiteracy and drop out rates. At present, it is estimated that less than 50% of all school-aged children in Burma attend school. Paradoxically, government military spending has grown to consume over 40% of the national budget. According to the US Department of State, the SPDC’s spending education is less than 1% of the GDP and spending on health is less than .3% of the GDP (source: Country Reports on Human Rights Practices - 2002, Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, US State Department). The World Health Organization’s 2000 report rated Burma’s healthcare system 190th overall, out of 191 countries surveyed. The regime’s failure to invest in children has had direct and visible consequences. According to UNICEF, out of the 1.3 million children born every year in Burma, more than 92,500 will die before they are one year old. Another 138,000 children will die before they reach the age of five. Children in Burma are also increasingly vulnerable to exploitation for dangerous labor. Approximately one quarter of children between the ages of 10-14 are engaged in paid work and there are a growing number of street children in concentrated urban areas. (Source: ICRC, 2002) In particular, street children, runaways and orphans are particularly vulnerable to forced recruitment into the armed forces. The SPDC is believed to be one of the world’s largest single users of child soldiers with more than 70,000 children serving in the national army alone. In addition, some armed opposition forces also recruit children, but in smaller numbers (source: Human Rights Watch, 2002). Burmese children are also victimized when forced into the sex industry, and the trafficking of children has become increasingly prevalent throughout the country, and especially in border areas. Ethnic minority children are often more vulnerable to abuse due to the fact that civil war is often drawn along ethnic lines and fought in ethnic minority areas. In addition to contending with the discrepancy between access to social services available to the military and civilian populations, ethnic minorities face the more direct consequences of internal conflict. Throughout 2002 children living in ethnic minority areas, like other members of their communities, continued to be subjected to physical injury, torture, rape, murder, forced labor, and forced relocation. Children in these areas were also forced to witness atrocities carried out against their family and community members; to endure separation from their families and communities; and to suffer from extremely limited access to health care, education, housing, and food..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Human Rights Documentation Unit of the NCGUB
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 10 November 2003


Title: GRANDIR SOUS LA DICTATURE BIRMANE
Date of publication: August 2003
Description/subject: "Ce rapport se concentre sur la situation des enfants birmans en Birmanie et dans leur principal pays d’exil, la Thaïlande. Il fait suite à deux voyages effectués en Thaïlande et en Birmanie pour y rencontrer des dizaines d’intervenants dans le domaine de l’enfance : parents, enfants, enseignants, médecins, syndicats, ONG, etc. Nous avons aussi eu l’occasion, tant en Birmanie qu’en Thaïlande, de visiter plusieurs hôpitaux, écoles et usines où travaillent des enfants. La plupart de nos interlocuteurs ont demandé de ne pas les citer nommément dans ce rapport car ils craignent pour leur sécurité. Nous les remercions tous pour le temps qu’ils ont bien voulu nous accorder, avec une reconnaissance toute particulière pour les personnes qui, en Birmanie même, ont pris des risques pour nous montrer la réalité de leur pays."
Author/creator: Samuel Grumiau
Language: Francais, French
Source/publisher: Confederation International des syndicats libres (CISL)
Format/size: pdf (112K)
Date of entry/update: 20 September 2003


Title: GROWING UP UNDER THE BURMESE DICTATORSHIP
Date of publication: August 2003
Description/subject: The situation facing children after 41 years of military rule in Burma... Some facts and figures on Burma; Historical background: 41 years of dictatorship; Standard of living in Burma; Children in Burma: 1) Education; 2) Child labour; 3) Forced child labour 18; 4) Health 19: Burmese children in Thailand; 1) Burmese people in Thailand; 2) Education of Burmese children in Thailand; 3) Child labour; 4) Health; Burmese children in Bangladesh; Conclusions.
Author/creator: Samuel Grumiau
Language: English
Source/publisher: International Confederation of Free Trade Unions (ICFTU)
Format/size: pdf (216K)
Date of entry/update: 23 August 2003


Title: "MY GUN WAS AS TALL AS ME" - Child Soldiers in Burma
Date of publication: 16 October 2002
Description/subject: "Burma is believed to have more child soldiers than any other country in the world. The overwhelming majority of Burma's child soldiers are found in Burma's national army, the Tatmadaw Kyi, which forcibly recruits children as young as eleven. These children are subject to beatings and systematic humiliation during training. Once deployed, they must engage in combat, participate in human rights abuses against civilians, and are frequently beaten and abused by their commanders and cheated of their wages. Refused contact with their families and facing severe reprisals if they try to escape, these children endure a harsh and isolated existence. Children are also present in Burma's myriad opposition groups, although in far smaller numbers. Some children join opposition groups to avenge past abuses by Burmese forces against members of their families or community, while others are forcibly conscripted. Many participate in armed conflict, sometimes with little or no training, and after years of being a soldier are unable to envision a future for themselves apart from military service. Burma's military government, the State Peace and Development Council (SPDC), claims that all of its soldiers are volunteers, and that the minimum recruitment age is eighteen.4 However, testimonies of former soldiers interviewed for this report suggest that the vast majority of new recruits are forcibly conscripted, and that 35 to 45 percent may be children. Although there is no way to establish precise figures, data taken from the observations of former child soldiers who have served in diverse parts of Burma suggests that 70,000 or more of the Burma army's estimated 350,000 soldiers may be children..."
Author/creator: Kevin Heppner
Language: English
Source/publisher: Human Rights Watch
Format/size: html (in sections); pdf (570K) 214 pages
Alternate URLs: http://www.hrw.org/reports/2002/burma/Burma0902.pdf
http://www.hrw.org/press/2002/10/burma-1016.htm (press release and other links)
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


Title: Burma Human Rights Yearbook 2001-2002: Children's Rights
Date of publication: September 2002
Description/subject: "...while national laws to protect children may be in place, little is done to enforce them. Exploitative and dangerous forms of child labor have been widely reported, including working on infrastructure development projects, in military support operations, as child soldiers and in the sex industry. The military government continues to prioritize strengthening the military over improving the heath and education systems the civilian population has little or no access to quality health and education services. In a 2000 report the United Sates Department of Labor cited the SPDCs apparent lack of commitment to primary education and widespread poverty as factors contributing to child labor in Burma. Almost half of all children get no education. According to UNICEF, out of 1.3 million children born in Burma every year, 92,500 die before their first birthday and 1 in 3 children under 5 are malnourished. .."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Human Rights Documentation Unit, NCGUB
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


Title: Burma Human Rights Yearbook 2000: Rights of the Child
Date of publication: October 2001
Description/subject: "On April 23, 1999, the U.N. Commission on Human Rights passed a resolution deploring the "continuing violations of the rights of children, in particular through the lack of conformity of the existing legal framework with the Convention on the Rights of the Child, through conscription of children into forced labor programs, through their military and sexual exploitation and through discrimination against children belonging to ethnic and religious minority groups." There is little reason to believe that the situation has changed since then. According to UNICEF, out of the 1.3 million children born in Myanmar every year, 92,500 die before their first birthday and 1:3 children under 5 are malnourished and almost half of all children get no education. While national laws to protect children are in place, little is done to enforce them, and exploitative and dangerous forms of child labor had been widely reported, including work on infrastructure development projects, in military support operations, as child soldiers, and in the sex industry. The military government continues to prioritize strengthening the military over improving the education system and there are dramatic differences between the quality of education received by civilian children and the children of the military..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Human Rights Documentation Unit, NCGUB
Format/size: html
Alternate URLs: Main page of the Yearbook: http://www.ibiblio.org/obl/docs/yearbooks/Main.htm
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


Title: Breaking Through the Clouds: A Participatory Action Research (PAR) Project with Migrant Children and Youth Along the Borders of China, Myanmar and Thailand
Date of publication: May 2001
Description/subject: 1. Introduction; 1.1. Background; 1.2. Project Profile; 1.3. Project Objectives; 2. The Participatory Action Research (PAR) Process; 2.1. Methods of Working with Migrant Children and Youth; 2.2. Implementation Strategy; 2.3. Ethical Considerations; 2.4. Research Team; 2.5. Sites and Participants; 2.6. Establishing Research Guidelines; 2.7. Data Collection Tools; 2.8. Documentation; 2.9. Translation; 2.10Country and Regional Workshops; 2.11Analysis, Methods of Reporting Findings and Dissemination Strategy; 2.12. Obstacles and Limitations; 3. PAR Interventions; 3.1. Strengthening Social Structures; 3.2. Awareness Raising; 3.3. Capacity Building; 3.4. Life Skills Development; 3.5. Outreach Services; 3.6. Networking and Advocacy; 4. The Participatory Review; 4.1. Aims of the Review; 4.2. Review Guidelines; 4.3. Review Approach and Tools; 4.4. Summary of Review Outcomes; 4.4.1. Myanmar; 4.4.2. Thailand; 4.4.3. China; 5. Conclusion and Recommendations; 6. Bibliography of Resources.
Author/creator: Therese Caouette et al
Language: English
Source/publisher: Save the Children (UK)
Format/size: pdf (191K) 75 pages
Date of entry/update: May 2003


Title: Victims Or Players?
Date of publication: February 2001
Description/subject: "Are young Burmese girls working in the brothels of Thailand victims or players in the lucrative sex trade? Perhaps a look at two typical cases can shed light on this question..."
Author/creator: Aung Zaw in Mae Sai, Chiang Mai & Min Zin in Ranong
Language: English
Source/publisher: "The Irrawaddy", Vol. 9. No. 2
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


Title: Small Dreams Beyond Reach: The Lives of Migrant Children and Youth Along the Borders of China, Myanmar and Thailand
Date of publication: 2001
Description/subject: A Participatory Action Research Project of Save the Children(UK)... 1. Introduction; 2. Background; 2.1. Population; 2.2. Geography; 2.3. Political Dimensions; 2.4. Economic Dimensions; 2.5. Social Dimensions; 2.6. Vulnerability of Children and Youth; 3. Research Design; 3.1. Project Objectives; 3.2. Ethical Considerations; 3.3. Research Team; 3.4. Research Sites and Participants; 3.5. Data Collection Tools; 3.6. Data Analysis Strategy; 3.7. Obstacles and Limitations; 4. Preliminary Research Findings; 4.1. The Migrants; 4.2. Reasons for migrating; 4.3. Channels of Migration; 4.4. Occupations; 4.5. Working and Living Conditions; 4.6. Health; 4.7. Education; 4.8. Drugs; 4.9. Child Labour; 4.10. Trafficking of Persons; 4.11. Vulnerabilities of Children; 4.12. Return and Reintegration; 4.13. Community Responses; 5. Conclusion and Recommendations... Recommendations to empower migrant children and youth in the Mekong sub-region... "This report provides an awareness of the realities and perspectives among migrant children, youth and their communities, as a means of building respect and partnerships to address their vulnerabilities to exploitation and abusive environments. The needs and concerns of migrants along the borders of China, Myanmar and Thailand are highlighted and recommendations to address these are made. The main findings of the participatory action research include: * those most impacted by migration are the peoples along the mountainous border areas between China, Myanmar and Thailand, who represent a variety of ethnic groups * both the countries of origin and countries of destination find that those migrating are largely young people and often include children * there is little awareness as to young migrants' concerns and needs, with extremely few interventions undertaken to reach out to them * the majority of the cross-border migrants were young, came from rural areas and had little or no formal education * the decision to migrate is complex and usually involves numerous overlapping factors * migrants travelled a number of routes that changed frequently according to their political and economic situations. The vast majority are identified as illegal immigrants * generally, migrants leave their homes not knowing for certain what kind of job they will actually find abroad. The actual jobs available to migrants were very gender specific * though the living and working conditions of cross-border migrants vary according to the place, job and employer, nearly all the participants noted their vulnerability to exploitation and abuse without protection or redress * for all illnesses, most of the participants explained that it was difficult to access public health services due to distance, cost and/or their illegal status * along all the borders, most of the children did not attend school and among those who did only a very few had finished primary level education * drug production, trafficking and addiction were critical issues identified by the communities at all of the research sites along the borders * child labour was found in all three countries * trafficking of persons, predominantly children and youth, was common at all the study sites * orphaned children along the border areas were found to be the most vulnerable * Migrants frequently considered their options and opportunities to return home Based on the project’s findings, recommendations are made at the conclusion of this report to address the critical issues faced by migrant children and youth along the borders. These recommendations include: methods of working with migrant youth, effective interventions, strategies for advocacy, identification of vulnerable populations and critical issues requiring further research. The following interventions were identified as most effective in empowering migrant children and youth in the Mekong sub-region: life skills training and literacy education, strengthening protection efforts, securing channels for safe return and providing support for reintegration to home countries. These efforts need to be initiated in tandem with advocacy efforts to influence policies and practices that will better protect and serve migrant children and youth."
Author/creator: Therese M. Caouette
Language: English
Source/publisher: Save the Children (UK)
Format/size: pdf (343K) 145 pages
Alternate URLs: http://www.savethechildren.org.uk/en/54_5205.htm
http://www.savethechildren.org.uk/en/docs/small_dreams.pdf
Date of entry/update: May 2003


Title: Burma Human Rights Yearbook 1999-2000 - Chapter 3: Rights of the Child
Date of publication: August 2000
Language: English
Source/publisher: Human Rights Documentation Unit of the NCGUB
Format/size: pdf (29K)
Date of entry/update: 23 November 2003


Title: Burma Human Rights Yearbook 1998-1999: 12 - Rights of the Child
Date of publication: July 1999
Language: English
Source/publisher: Human Rights Documentation Unit of the NCGUB
Format/size: pdf (31K)
Date of entry/update: 30 November 2003


Title: Report of the ILO Commission of Inquiry: customised version highlighting violence against children
Date of publication: 02 July 1998
Description/subject: Extracts on children from the Report of the Commission of Inquiry appointed under article 26 of the Constitution of the International Labour Organization to examine the observance by Myanmar of the Forced Labour Convention, 1930 (No. 29)
Language: English
Source/publisher: ILO Commission of Inquiry
Format/size: html (536K)
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


Title: Burma Human Rights Yearbook 1997-1998: 10 - The Rights of the Child
Date of publication: July 1998
Language: English
Source/publisher: Human Rights Documentation Unit of the NCGUB
Format/size: pdf (34K)
Date of entry/update: 30 November 2003


Title: Slaughter of the Innocent Soldiers
Date of publication: September 1997
Description/subject: Recruitment • Roles And Duties • Treatment and experiences. They are about 13 or 15 years old, wear army uniforms and carry war weapons. By all other measures they are still children, but it is not war games they play. Burmese history is full of stories of different kings at war with each other and the modern period since 1948 -- when the British surrendered their colonial rule -- has been little different. Almost from the day the British lowered the Union Jack, Burma has been home to a continuous civil war described by some observers as one of the most complicated conflicts in the world.
Language: English
Source/publisher: "The Irrawaddy", Vol. 5. No. 6
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


Title: Burma Human Rights Yearbook 1996: 07 - Rights of the Child
Date of publication: July 1997
Language: English
Source/publisher: Human Rights Documentation Unit of the NCGUB
Format/size: pdf (40K)
Date of entry/update: 01 December 2003


Title: Committee on the Rights of the Child: Summary record of the 358th Meeting
Date of publication: 15 January 1997
Description/subject: CRC Fourteenth session. Initial report of Myanmar
Language: English
Source/publisher: United Nations
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


Title: Committee on the Rights of the Child: Summary record, 357th Meeting
Date of publication: 15 January 1997
Description/subject: CRC Fourteenth session. Initial report of Myanmar
Language: English
Source/publisher: United Nations
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


Title: CRC 1997: Burma: Children's Rights and the Rule of Law
Date of publication: January 1997
Description/subject: Submitted as an Alternative Report to the CRC. Burma acceded to the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) in 1991. Since then, however, there has been little progress towards the implementation of the convention, and the underlying problems which impede implementation have not changed. These include a total lack of the rule of law and accountability of the government, as well as draconian restrictions on freedom of expression, association and peaceful assembly which prevent local reporting and monitoring of the human rights situation of children. Events of October and December1996 in Burma, which saw hundreds of high school and university students take to the streets to demand the protection of their rights, especially the right to form student unions, highlight the urgent need for reform. Over three hundred students and youths were arrested during the December demonstrations, at least fifty of whom remain unaccounted for. . .
Language: English
Source/publisher: Human Rights Watch
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


Title: CRC 1997: The Situation of Children in Burma
Date of publication: 01 May 1996
Description/subject: "[This report was prepared as a submission to the UN Committee which is reviewing SLORC’s observance of the Convention on Rights of the Child, which SLORC ratified in 1991. Under the terms of the Convention, SLORC was required to submit a report to the Committee in 1993, but did not do so until September 1995. Their case comes before the Committee in Oct. 1996 or Jan. 1997. This report was submitted together with a 140-page Annex of excerpts from KHRG reports relating to children. It is reproduced here for general use.] This summary is intended for consideration by the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child. It has been prepared partly in response to the report filed by the State Law & Order Restoration Council (SLORC), Burma’s ruling military junta. It does not contain a paragraph-by-paragraph analysis of SLORC’s report, but instead attempts to summarize some of the worst problems facing Burma’s children today and point out some of the most glaring fallacies in the SLORC report. All of the observations and quotations included here are taken from our 4 years of living among and interviewing villagers, refugees and the internally displaced. In Burma the Tatmadaw (Army) exercises absolute power of life and death over every civilian, including children. Soldiers act with complete impunity, particularly in rural areas, and are not answerable to any laws which exist on paper in Rangoon. Children are often shot on sight in free-fire zones, tortured or executed as "suspected rebels", used for forced labour, forcibly conscripted into the Army and otherwise subject to direct abuse. They also suffer from the destruction of the village environment and the economy under SLORC policies, which are leading to widespread malnutrition and the death of children, the lack of educational opportunities, and other factors which rob them of a childhood..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG Articles and Papers)
Format/size: html, pdf (115.54 K)
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


Title: Committee on the Rights of the Child: Myanmar, Initial State Party Report
Date of publication: 18 September 1995
Description/subject: CRC/C/8/Add.9.
Language: English
Source/publisher: United Nations
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


Title: Burma Human Rights Yearbook 1994: 10 - Rights of the Child
Date of publication: September 1995
Language: English
Source/publisher: Human Rights Documentation Unit of the NCGUB
Format/size: html (17K)
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


Title: It’s something deep inside your heart…When you see your children dying of hunger
Description/subject: "Thazun is a courageous, beautiful and talented young Arakanese woman who talks openly about her life and experiences. Spending her childhood under conditions that many people around the world would find hard to believe, Thazun has never given up hope for a better life. Her father is a politician and always on the run from Burmese authorities, while her mother worked away for years with hundreds of other forced labourers. When growing up, Thazun didn’t know her father, and for over two years, five-year-old Thazun and her sister and brothers were left to survive on their own without their mother or anyone to look after them. When their mother was able to visit them, she found her children almost starved to death. And yet Thazun’s mother had no choice but to leave, unable to help her children or even know if they were still alive. As heartbreaking as her story may be, Thazun shows how determination and hope can lead towards light. This is the first part of her story."..."Thazun’s story is based on an interview with Burma Link."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Burma Link
Format/size: pdf
Date of entry/update: 15 March 2016


Title: Sacrifice: the Story of Child Prostitutes from Burma
Description/subject: 2 minute 37 second extract from a film by Ellen Bruno. "Screened at Sundance, the film examines the social, cultural and economic forces at work in the trafficking of Burmese girls into prostitution in Thailand. The site also has linked resources - organisations, films, publications, calls to action etc.
Author/creator: Ellen Bruno
Language: English, Thai
Source/publisher: .brunofilms
Format/size: Adobe Flash
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003