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Home > Main Library > Human Rights > Discrimination > Women: discrimination/violence against > Discrimination/violence against women: reports of violations in Burma

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Discrimination/violence against women: reports of violations in Burma
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Websites/Multiple Documents

Title: International Women's Rights Action Watch
Language: English
Source/publisher: International Women's Rights Action Watch
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 25 November 2010


Title: Karen Women's Organisation
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Women's Organisation
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


Title: Shan Women's Action Network (SWAN)
Description/subject: "SWAN is a founding member of the Women's League of Burma (WLB), an umbrella women's organization comprising eleven women's groups from Burma. SWAN, through its affiliation with other women's organizations, establishes common platforms to promote the role of women from Burma in the struggle for democracy and human rights in their country. SWAN's objectives: * Promoting women's rights and the rights of children; * Opposing exploitation of and violence against women and children; * Working together for peace and freedom in our society; * Empowering women for a better life; * Raising awareness to preserve natural resources and the environment. Background of SWAN SWAN was set up on 28 March 1999 by a group of Shan women active in Thailand and along the Thai- Burma border seeking to address the needs of Shan women. In fact, before the formation of SWAN, Shan women in various locations had already been active in a number of projects to assist women. Even though informal networks were in place, it was felt that more could be achieved, in addressing both practical and strategic needs of Shan women, if a more concrete network among the various women could be formed. This Shan women's network would also be able to coordinate with other women's organizations from Burma, as well as GOs and NGOs working with women locally, nationally and internationally. General Background The Shan State is over 64,000 square kilometers in size and forms the eastern part of the Union of Burma bordering China, Laos and Thailand. The people of the Shan State, like in other areas of Burma, suffer from abuse inflicted by the Burmese military regime, which according to Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch Asia is amongst the worst in the world. The abuse inflicted on the Shan people by the Burmese military has forced many people to flee for their lives to Thailand. The Thai government, however, does not recognize the Shan people as refugees and unlike the Karen and Karenni refugees, has not allowed them to set up refugees camps along the Thai-Burmese border. Consequently the Shans are forced to enter Thailand illegally, which leaves them extremely vulnerable to exploitation and abuse. Despite this, Shan people are still coming to take refuge in Thailand. The estimated number of Shans working illegally in Thailand is at least 300,000. Among them are many girls and young women who have been trafficked into Thai brothels, where they face a wide range of abuse including sexual and other physical violence, debt bondage, exposure to HIV/AIDS, forced labor without payment and illegal confinement..." Reports, programmes etc.
Language: English
Source/publisher: Shan Women's Action Network (SWAN)
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: April 2003


Title: Women's League of Burma (WLB)
Description/subject: Well-designed site containing several substantial reports, links, profiles of member organisations, etc. Members: Kachin Women's Association - Thailand (KWAT); Karen Women's Organization (KWO); Kuki Women's Human Rights Organization (KWHRO); Lahu Women's Organization (LWO); Palaung Women's Organization (PWO); Pa-O Women's Union (PWU); Rakhaing Women's Union (RWU); Shan Women's Action Network (SWAN); Tavoy Women's Union (TWU); Women's Rights & Welfare Association of Burma (WRWAB)... "The Women's League of Burma (WLB) is an umbrella organization comprising 11 already-existing women's organizations of different ethnic backgrounds from Burma. WLB was founded on December 9,1999. Its mission is to work for women's empowerment and advancement of the status of women, and to work for the increased participation of women in all spheres of society in the democracy movement, and in peace and national reconciliation processes through capacity building, advocacy, research and documentation... Aims: * To work for the empowerment and development of women. * To encourage women's participation in decision-making in all spheres of life. * To enable women to participate effectively in the movement for peace, democracy and national reconciliation. By working together, and encouraging cooperation between the different groups, the Women's League of Burma hopes to build trust, solidarity and mutual understanding among women of all nationalities in Burma.".... The site also contains statements made by WLB representatives at various regional and international meetings including the Commission on Human Rights and the World Conference Against Racism.
Language: English, (links in Burmese, Thai)
Source/publisher: Women's League of Burma
Format/size: html, pdf
Date of entry/update: 28 October 2003


Individual Documents

Title: "MIGRATING WITH HOPE": Burmese Women Working in Thailand and The Sex Industry
Date of publication: July 1997
Description/subject: "...This report, "Migrating With Hope: Burmese Women Working In Thailand and The Sex Industry" attempts to present and highlight the needs, interests, and realities of undocumented migrant women from Burma working as sex-workers in Thailand. We look at the lives of women in Burma, the migration processes, processes of entry into the sex-industry, and factors which govern women's wellbeing or suffering during the time of migration in Thailand. The authors hope that the documentation presented will provide useful information to prospective migrants from Burma. We also hope that it can be used to instigate programmes to protect the rights of and to provide the necessary services for undocumented migrant workers, and by doing this, prevent more Burmese women from being exploited. This report is written in the knowledge that women can become empowered to make informed choices about their lives. It is also hoped that this report will provide the general public with information not only about Burmese migrant women, but also about the situation of undocumented migrant workers who flee from Burma, a country ruled by a military regime..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Images Asia
Format/size: pdf (284K)
Date of entry/update: 19 May 2005


Title: "Escape From the Bear and Run Into the Tiger": The Impact of Violence and Fear on Migrants' Reproductive Health
Date of publication: December 2000
Description/subject: "The massive influx of migrants from Burma into Thailand is one of the largest migrant populations in Asia. Over one million migrants from Burma are currently residing in Thailand. An ethnically diverse group coming from all over Burma and speaking many different languages, these migrants often lack a common language even among themselves. What they do share are encounters of fear and violence, that affect most facets of their lives. During 1998, an Assessment of Reproductive and Sexual Health Perspectives, Concerns and Realities of Migrant Workers from Burma in Thailand was conducted under the guidance of Mahidol University's Institute of Population and Social Research (IPSR). The recently published results of the study reveal that a fear of violence and a preoccupation with staying safe determines almost every aspect of the migrants' lives, including their health care options and decisions. The study highlights the extremely limited health services that exist in Burma as well as the problems encountered by migrants in Thailand such as the ready availability of medicines without access to health services or education. Consequently, people from Burma suffer from easily treatable conditions, presenting a health care crisis on both sides of the border. Most migrants from Burma in Thailand reside illegally and are generally unable to communicate in Thai. They are often in situations which leave them vulnerable to violence and abuse by employers, authorities and even each other. These experiences, coupled with fears of violence and exploitation, create a vacuum in which the migrants have few or no options for health services. This reality is further compounded by cultural mores and the lack of basic and reproductive health education, which lead to high maternal mortality and morbidity rates, unwanted pregnancies, unsafe abortions and sexually transmitted diseases (including HIV/ AIDS)..."
Author/creator: Therese Caouette
Language: English
Source/publisher: "Burma Debate" VOL. VII, NO. 4 WINTER 2000
Format/size: pdf (329K - article; 1.22MB - full magazine)
Alternate URLs: http://www.burmalibrary.org/docs11/BD2000-V07-N04.pdf
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


Title: "If Not Now, When? Addressing Gender-based Violence in Refugee, Internally Displaced and Post-conflict Settings. A Global Overview. 2002" (Extract on Burma and Thailand)
Date of publication: June 2002
Description/subject: This extract offers a brief overview of gender-based violence in Burma and among Burmese refugees in Thailand. "...Women have been victims of the well-documented and pervasive human rights abuses also suffered by men, including forced labor on government construction projects, forced portering for the army, summary arrest, torture and extra-judicial execution. These and other human rights violations are committed sometimes in the course of military operations, but more often as part of the army's policy of repression of ethnic minority civilians. Women and girls are specifically targeted for rape and sexual harassment by soldiers. Many of the areas in Burma where soldiers rape women are not areas of active conflict, though they may have large numbers of standing troops. There has been little action on the part of the state to reduce the prevalence of sexual abuse by its military personnel or ensure that the perpetrators of these crimes are brought to justice..." For the full report, covering most parts of the world, follow the link below.
Language: English
Source/publisher: International Rescue Committee, Women's Commission on Refugee Women and Children
Format/size: html, pdf
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


Title: A MOCKERY OF JUSTICE: THE STATE PEACE AND DEVELOPMENT COUNCIL'S INVESTIGATION INTO THE "LICENCE TO RAPE" REPORT
Date of publication: 24 September 2002
Description/subject: "The "Licence to Rape" report was launched internationally on 19 June 2002. Following statements in the U.S. Congress and by the U.S. State Department in late June and early July, deploring the use of sexual violence by the Burmese military regime against Shan women, the regime began publicly denouncing the report. In the regime's first public statement on 3 July 2002, the Burmese Ambassador to the U.S. called the report "unverified testimonies" of "so-called victims." On July 12th and 30th, the State Peace and Development Council (SPDC) held press conferences, and denounced the report as "fabrications of the insurgents." On 2 August, it was announced that the SPDC had launched an investigation into the report. SPDC Deputy Home Minister Brig-Gen.Thura Myint Maung was quoted in the state-run New Light of Myanmar newspaper as saying that the investigation was being made to "refute�preposterous accusations." Investigation teams were sent to Shan State from 18-30 August. The teams were led by Brig-General Thura Myint Maung himself, and Dr. Daw Khin Win Shwe, wife of General Khin Nyunt. On 23 August (before completion of the investigation), the SPDC held a briefing for heads of diplomatic missions and UN agencies in Rangoon, claiming to have found the allegations in the "Licence to Rape" report as "groundless and malicious." * * http://www3.itu.int/MISSIONS/Myanmar/n020824.htm#3 SWAN refutes the findings of this staged "investigation" by the SPDC. Reports received have revealed that the "investigation" was fraudulent. It is clear that under the current military regime, with no rule of law and no faith in its institutions, no-one will dare testify against perpetrators who have absolute power in their communities. The Burmese army's "licence to rape" continues (see Appendix II for recent incidences). SWAN has compiled available evidence to counter the SPDC's "findings": ..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Shan Women's Action Network
Format/size: html (19K)
Date of entry/update: 25 November 2010


Title: A MODERN FORM OF SLAVERY:
Date of publication: August 1993
Description/subject: A substantial and important report. ""Lin Lin" was thirteen years old when she was recruited by an agent for work in Thailand. Her father took $480 from the agent with the understanding that his daughter would pay the loan back out of her earnings. The agent took "Lin Lin" to Bangkok, and three days later she was taken to the Ran Dee Prom brothel. "Lin Lin" did not know what was going on until a man came into her room and started touching her breasts and body and then forced her to have sex. For the next two years, "Lin Lin" worked in various parts of Thailand in four different brothels, all but one owned by the same family. The owners told her she would have to keep prostituting herself until she paid off her father's debt. Her clients, who often included police, paid the owner $4 each time. If she refused a client's demands, she was slapped and threatened by the owner. She worked every day except for the two days off each month she was allowed for her menstrual period. Once she had to borrow money to pay for medicine to treat a painful vaginal infection. This amount was added to her debt. On January 18, 1993 the Crime Suppression Division of the Thai police raided the brothel in which "Lin Lin" worked, and she was taken to a shelter run by a local non-governmental organization. She was fifteen years old, had spent over two years of her young life in compulsory prostitution, and tested positive for the human immunodeficiency virus or HIV. "Lin Lin" is just one of thousands of Burmese women and girls who have been trafficked and sold into what amounts to female sexual slavery in Thailand. In the last two years, Thai NGOs estimate that at a minimum, some twenty thousand Burmese women and girls are suffering Lee's fate, or worse, and that ten thousand new recruits come in every year. They are moved from one brothel to another as the demand for new faces dictates, and often end up being sent back to Burma after a year or two to recruit their own successors..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Asia Watch and the Women's Rights Project (Human Rights Watch)
Format/size: html (394K)
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


Title: Beyond Trafficking Jams: Creating a Space for Trafficked Women
Date of publication: February 2001
Description/subject: Trafficking in women stems from society's failure to recognize the valueof certain forms of labor, leaving women engaged in them open to every imaginable form of exploitation. Trafficked women need more than pity, argues Jackie Pollock: They need room to find their own solutions to the problems facing their respective professions.
Author/creator: Jackie Pollock
Language: English
Source/publisher: "The Irrawaddy, Vol. 9. No. 2
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


Title: Briefing on false allegations on sexual violence against women held
Date of publication: 23 August 2002
Description/subject: See also the report, "License to Rape" and "A Mockery of Justice", the reply by the authors of "License to Rape" to the present document
Language: English
Source/publisher: "The New Light of Myanmar" 24 August 2002
Format/size: html (21K) Click on para 3
Date of entry/update: 25 November 2010


Title: Burma Human Rights Yearbook 1994: 09 - Abuse of Women
Date of publication: September 1995
Language: English
Source/publisher: Human Rights Documentation Unit of the NCGUB
Format/size: html (61K)
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


Title: Burma Human Rights Yearbook 2000: Women's Rights
Date of publication: October 2001
Description/subject: Events of 2000. Women in Politics, Health of women from Burma, Women and Forced Labor, Violence against Women, Trafficking of Women, Rape and sexual violence - Partial list of incidents, "Since the military regime took power in 1962, it has had to put disproportionate resources into maintaining its power and strengthening the military. The result of this and ongoing civil war is poor infrastructure, inadequate health care and education systems, widespread poverty and a militarized society that puts the needs of the civilian population, particularly women, second to military concerns. The elevation of the military in society has enforced stereotypes about the subordinate status of women while at the same time blocked access to the tools, such as education and health care, that women need to attain genuine equality. Although the military regime became a party to the Convention on the Elimination of Discrimination of Women (CEDAW) in 1997 it has done little more than make token changes, such as the formation of some womens organizations, to implement it..."
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: Burma Human Rights Yearbook 2001-2002: Women's Rights
Date of publication: September 2002
Description/subject: "...The elevation of the military in society has enforced stereotypes about the subordinate status of women while at the same time blocked access to the tools, such as education and health care, that women need to attain genuine equality. Although the military regime became a party to the Convention on the Elimination of Discrimination of Women (CEDAW) in 1997 it has done little more than make token changes, such as the formation of some womens organizations, to implement the tenets of the convention. Ethnic women living in conflict areas are particularly vulnerable to human rights abuses. Health care and education is severely underdeveloped in these areas, including access to family planning methods. Women in these areas are also subject to forced relocations, forced labor, forced portering in war zones, physical abuse and sexual violations. These are directed, primarily, at ethnic minorities seeking autonomy. Women in conflict areas find themselves vulnerable to abuse and lacking in their basic needs, which may force them into becoming refugees or migrants...."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Human Rights Documentation Unit, NCGUB
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


Title: Burma Human Rights Yearbook 2002-03: Women's Rights
Date of publication: October 2003
Description/subject: "Since the military regime took power in 1962, it has put disproportionate resources into maintaining its power and strengthening the military. The result of this and the ongoing civil war is poor infrastructure, inadequate health care and education systems, widespread poverty and a militarized society that puts the needs of the civilian population, particularly women, second to military concerns. The elevation of the military in society has enforced stereotypes about the subordinate status of women while at the same time blocked access to the tools, such as education and health care, women need to attain genuine equality. Although the military regime became a party to the Convention on the Elimination of Discrimination of Women (CEDAW) in 1997 it has done little more than make token changes, such as the formation of some women’s organizations, to implement the tenets of the convention. Ethnic women living in conflict areas are particularly vulnerable to human rights abuses. Health care and education is severely underdeveloped in these areas, including access to family planning methods. Women in these areas are also subject to forced relocations, forced labor, forced portering in war zones, physical abuse and sexual violations. These are directed, primarily, at ethnic minorities seeking autonomy. Women in conflict areas find themselves vulnerable to abuse and lacking in their basic needs which may force them into becoming refugees or migrants..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Human Rights Documentation Unit, NCGUB
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 10 November 2003


Title: Burma Human Rights Yearbook 2008 - Chapter 17: Rights of Women
Date of publication: 23 November 2009
Description/subject: "Women in Burma continued to suffer discrimination and violence throughout 2008, despite representatives of the ruling junta, the State Peace and Development Council (SPDC) arguing otherwise. The SPDC states that women in Burma enjoy full rights from the moment they are born and often point to the relatively autonomous role they claim women in Burma have traditionally enjoyed in any discussions on the rights of women. However, traditional patriarchal notions about women’s proper role in society have helped foster a climate that effectively obstructs any advancement towards women’s rights and gender equality. Women’s abilities are seen as limited, and their activities therefore curtailed. In addition, recent history has all but destroyed the collective capacity of Burmese women to attain real equality...Women rarely receive equal pay for equal work and are severely underrepresented in the civil service and in other decision-making positions.5 Significantly, since the military coup in 1962 women have been barred from any positions with real political power as these jobs are reserved for the military, which women are all but banned from. Domestic laws regarding specific crimes often committed against women, such as domestic violence and sexual violence, are sorely lacking: there is no law to address domestic violence and only some sections of the Penal Code dating from 1860 and not changed since, deal with sexual and gender based violence.6 Recent anti-trafficking laws have been widely criticised for restricting women’s freedom of movement, as women under 25 have been prohibited from travelling to neighbouring countries, leaving many vulnerable to relying on traffickers to cross the borders...A most troubling aspect of women’s rights In Burma has been the continuing reports of widespread gender-specific sexual violence and abuse committed by military forces in the border areas. A significant number of rape cases have been documented since 2002. Their systemic nature has led to concerns of specific targeting of some ethnic and religious groups. However, the junta denies this, and the practices continue with the ostensible sanction of those higher up the command chain..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Human Rights Docmentation Unit (HRDU)
Format/size: pdf (718K)
Date of entry/update: 06 December 2009


Title: Burma's Soldiers: Equal Opportunity Rapists
Date of publication: 26 November 2002
Description/subject: "In the Burmese language, Burma’s military is named the Pyithu Tatmadaw, or the People’s Army. The Tatmadaw, according to Burma’s ruling military regime, the State Peace and Development Council (SPDC), “safeguards national solidarity and peace.” According to women from Burma’s ethnic nationalities (ethnic minority groups), particularly those living in the ethnic States along Burma’s borders, the Tatmadaw does the opposite. Rather than look to the Tatmadaw for protection, women from the ethnic nationalities flee in fear at the sight of a soldier. A recent investigation by the Women’s Rights Project and Refugees International documents the widespread use of rape by Burma’s soldiers to brutalize women from five different ethnic nationalities..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: EarthRights International
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 25 November 2010


Title: Burmese Military Regime’s Systematic Use of Rape against Ethnic Shan Women
Date of publication: 07 January 2003
Description/subject: Asia Social Forum, Hyderabad, India, January 2-7-2003... Statement by Shan Women’s Action Network (SWAN)... "Since the Burmese Army troops began coming into Shan State, they have been abusing the local populations. Women have always been easy targets, and have been vulnerable to sexual violence. Sexual violence serves the multiple purposes of not only terrorizing local communities onto submission, but also flaunting the power of the dominant troops over the enemy’s women, and thereby humiliating and demoralizing resistance forces. It also serves as a “reward” to troops for fighting..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Shan Women’s Action Network (SWAN)
Format/size: pdf (75K)
Date of entry/update: April 2003


Title: Burmese Sisterhood: Unacknowledged Piety
Date of publication: September 2000
Description/subject: Buddhist nuns have long played an important role in the country's spiritual life, despite centuries of discrimination.
Author/creator: Thameechit
Language: English
Source/publisher: "The Irrawaddy", Vol. 8. No. 9
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


Title: CEDAW (Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women): Examination of the Initial Report of Myanmar
Date of publication: 21 January 2000
Description/subject: 21 January 2000: 1) U Win Mra's Statement; 2) Questions from the Committee; 3) Response by Myanmar; 4) Shadow Report by the Women's Organizations of Burma's Shadow Report Writing Committee: "Burma: The Current State of Women - Conflict Area Specific". Includes recommendations on health, education, violence against women and poverty.
Language: English
Source/publisher: "Burma Debate" Vol. VI, No, 4
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


Title: CEDAW (Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women): Initial Report of Myanmar
Date of publication: 25 June 1999
Language: English
Source/publisher: United Nations (CEDAW/C/MMR/1)
Format/size: pdf (203K)
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


Title: CEDAW 2000: (Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women): Concluding Observations on Myanmar
Date of publication: 28 January 2000
Description/subject: (CEDAW/C/2000/I/CRP.3/Add.2/Rev.1.)
Language: English
Source/publisher: United Nations.
Format/size: pdf (51K)
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


Title: CHR 2003; Stop Licence to Rape in Burma
Date of publication: 09 April 2003
Description/subject: Position paper prepared by Shan Womens Action Network (SWAN) for the 59th session of the UN Commission on aHuman Rights. 17 March -25 April, 2003. "Since 1992, the UNCHR has passed resolutions each year on the situation of human rights in Burma. The reports by the UN Special Rapporteurs on Burma submitted to the UN General Assembly since 1992 have contained an abundance of summaries of testimonies of extreme human rights violations committed by the Burmese military regime, including military rape.] In the 1994 report, one recommendation reads, "The Government of Myanmar should take the necessary steps to bring the acts of soldiers, including privates and officers, in line with accepted international human rights and humanitarian standards so that they will not commit arbitrary killings, rapes and confiscations of property, or force persons into acts of labour, portering, relocation or otherwise treat persons without respect for their dignity as human beings." The Special Rapporteur on Burma's 2003 report contains similar recommendations..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Shan Womens Action Network (SWAN)
Format/size: html (58K), pdf (136K)
Alternate URLs: http://www.apwld.org/pdf/SWANCHR_paper.pdf
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


Title: Courage to Resist - Women Human Rights Defenders of Burma
Date of publication: November 2007
Description/subject: "...these women human rights defenders have been subjected to the following abuses, in violation of their fundamental human rights as guaranteed under the UN Declaration on Human Rights, the Declaration of Human Rights Defenders, the International Convention on Civil and Political Rights, and the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women: *Attacks on life, bodily and mental integrity – including torture; ‘hostage-taking’; sexual assault such as tearing their clothes and sarongs; excessive use of force in crackdowns on the demonstrations and the subsequent arrests; * Physical and psychological deprivation of liberty – such as arbitrary arrests and detention, forcing many of them to go into hiding for their safety; * Attacks against personhood and reputations – which include verbal abuse; slander, labelling them as ‘terrorists’; smear campaigns through the media; sexuality-baiting, which is the manipulative use of negative ideas about sexuality to intimidate, humiliate or embarrass women, with the intention of inhibiting or destroying their political agendas. * Invasion of privacy and violations involving personal relationships such as arrest, detention and intimidation of family members, endangering pregnant women and separating breastfeeding mothers from their babies; * Violations of women’s freedom of expression, association and assembly; * Non-recognition of violations and impunity...."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Women's League of Burma
Format/size: pdf (437K)
Date of entry/update: 23 November 2007


Title: Double Jeopardy: Abuse of Ethnic Women's Human Rights in Burma
Date of publication: 31 October 2000
Description/subject: "Many sociologists, anthropologists, and even Burmese politicians have maintained that Burmese women face less gender discrimination than do their sisters in other Southeast Asian countries. Burma's relative isolation for nearly forty years has helped perpetuate this myth, even as women's groups in exile make concerted efforts to debunk it. Despite Burma's ratification of the Convention on Elimination of all forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW), discrimination is apparent in virtually every facet of women's lives. Its consequences are most visible in the country's remote rural areas, populated primarily by ethnic peoples, where gender discrimination is compounded by civil war. Because of the diversity among Burma's 135 officially-recognized ethnic groups, generalizing about them is risky. However, there clearly exists a country-wide pattern to the abuses suffered by Karen, Karenni, Mon, Shah, Kachin, Chin, Arakanese, Rohingya, and other ethnic women. In naming itself the State Peace and Development Council (SPDC), the ruling military junta neatly highlights the two areas in which it most consistently fails the country's citizens: peace and development. Government neglect of social programs diminishes women's access to health care, education, and economic resources, while military campaigns to eliminate ethnic resistance put women's lives and wellbeing under constant threat. For years, even decades, human rights organizations have documented human rights violations against ethnic women in Burma. Only recently have Burmese women's organizations in exile had the means to publicize the lesser-known consequences of oppression for women..."
Author/creator: Brenda Belak
Language: English
Source/publisher: "Cultural Survival Quarterly" Issue 24.3
Format/size: html
Alternate URLs: http://www.culturalsurvival.org/publications/csq/print/article_print.cfm?id=66D866F8-EAA6-4BE6-85B8-37D5B57AC9F9
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


Title: For Sex Workers, A Life of Risks
Date of publication: 25 February 2010
Description/subject: RANGOON, Feb 25, 2010 (IPS) - When Aye Aye (not her real name) leaves her youngest son at home each night, she tells him that she has to work selling snacks. But what Aye actually sells is sex so that her 12-year-old son, a Grade 7 student, can finish his education.
Author/creator: Mon Mon Myat
Language: English
Source/publisher: IPS
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 02 November 2010


Title: Gathering Strength - Women from Burma on their Rights
Date of publication: January 2002
Description/subject: Link to the URLs of the individual chapters (pdf): IMAGES ASIA'S CEDAW PROJECT METHODOLOGY: THE AIM OF THIS REPORT 11; THE INTERVIEW PROCESS 11; OBSTACLES ENCOUNTERED DURING RESEARCH 13; DATA ANALYSIS 14; OTHER PROJECT AIMS 17. THE CEDAW & THE GOVERNMENT'S OBLIGATIONS: THE CEDAW & THE INTERNATIONAL WOMEN'S RIGHTS MOVEMENT; STRUCTURE OF THE CEDAW; GENERAL RECOMMENDATIONS; CEDAW MONITORING MECHANISMS; THE SPDC AT THE 22ND SESSION OF THE CEDAW... MEETINGS & MACHINERY: THE GOVERNMENT'S COMMITMENT TO THE CEDAW: OVERVIEW; THE BURMESE WAY TO EQUALITY; FINDINGS & RECOMMENDATIONS... SOCIAL ROLES & GENDER STEREOTYPES: OVERVIEW; RELIGION & GENDER DISCRIMINATION; PRESERVERS OF CULTURE; FAMILY ROLES; SOCIAL RELATIONS & BEHAVIOURAL NORMS; RESTRICTIONS; FINDINGS & RECOMMENDATIONS... VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN: OVERVIEW; WOMEN IN WAR; RELOCATION & DISPLACEMENT; SEXUAL VIOLENCE & ARMED CONFLICT; SEXUAL VIOLENCE IN AREAS OF MILITARY OCCUPATION; SEXUAL VIOLENCE ACROSS BORDERS: REFUGEES & MIGRANTS; SEXUAL VIOLENCE IN THE COMMUNITY; REPORTING & PUNISHMENT OF SEXUAL VIOLENCE; FORCED MARRIAGE; DOMESTIC VIOLENCE; DOMESTIC VIOLENCE IN RELOCATION & REFUGE; GOVERNMENT PROGRAMS ON DOMESTIC VIOLENCE; FINDINGS & RECOMMENDATIONS... WOMEN'S HEALTH: OVERVIEW; GOVERNMENT HEALTH SPENDING; POLICY, LAW & ENVIRONMENTAL FACTORS RELATING TO WOMEN'S HEALTH; EDUCATION ABOUT WOMEN'S HEALTH ISSUES; ACCESS TO HEALTH CARE; REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH; MATERNAL HEALTH; WOMEN & HIV/AIDS 120 FINDINGS & RECOMMENDATIONS... EDUCATION FOR WOMEN & GIRLS: OVERVIEW; WOMEN & ILLITERACY; CURRENT SCHOOL ATTENDANCE & DROP OUT; BARRIERS TO EDUCATION; DISCRIMINATION IN GIRLS' SCHOOLING; INCENTIVES & OPPORTUNITIES FOR HIGHER EDUCATION; VOCATIONAL TRAINING; FINDINGS & RECOMMENDATIONS... THE ECONOMY & WOMEN'S LABOUR: OVERVIEW; THE ECONOMY; DECISION-MAKING & THE FAMILY INCOME; CULTURAL STEREOTYPES REGARDING WORK; RURAL WOMEN; FORCED LABOUR; EDUCATION & WORK OPPORTUNITIES; WOMEN IN THE PAID LABOUR FORCE; THE CIVIL SERVICE; THE INFORMAL SECTOR; THE PRIVATE SECTOR; LACK OF INFORMAL & PRIVATE SECTOR REGULATION; THE ENTERTAINMENT INDUSTRY; FINDINGS & RECOMMENDATIONS... MIGRATION & TRAFFICKING OF WOMEN & GIRLS: OVERVIEW; RESTRICTION ON WOMEN'S FREEDOM OF MOVEMENT; REGIONAL MIGRATION; TRAFFICKING; SEX WORK; DEPORTATION; ACTIONS TO COMBAT TRAFFICKING; FINDINGS & RECOMMENDATIONS... WOMEN & THE LAW: OVERVIEW; FOUNDATIONS OF THE LAW IN BURMA; LAWS RELATING SPECIFICALLY TO WOMEN; THE PRACTICE OF THE LAW; WOMEN & FAMILY LAW; FINDINGS & RECOMMENDATIONS... WOMEN'S PARTICIPATION IN POLITICS: OVERVIEW; RESTRICTIONS ON POLITICAL FREEDOM; INTERNATIONAL PARTICIPATION; NATIONAL PARTICIPATION; LOCAL PARTICIPATION; WOMEN'S PARTICIPATION IN OPPOSITION MOVEMENTS; CONSEQUENCES OF POLITICAL ACTIVITY; WOMEN'S POLITICAL ACTIVITIES IN EXILE; WOMEN IN BURMA'S POLITICAL FUTURE; FINDINGS & RECOMMENDATIONS... CONCLUSION... BIBLIOGRAPHY... ORGANISATIONAL PROFILE.
Author/creator: Brenda Belak
Language: English
Source/publisher: Images Asia
Format/size: html (38K)
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


Title: In the Shadow of the Junta - CEDAW Shadow Report by women of Burma
Date of publication: 27 October 2008
Description/subject: (Press RElease, 27 October 2008): CEDAW shadow report reveals systemic gender discrimination in Burma... "Women’s organizations are today launching a shadow report revealing systemic gender discrimination in Burma, which will be used to review Burma at the 42nd Session of the Convention on the Elimination of all forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) Committee in Geneva on November 3, 2008. The Women’s League of Burma, together with other community-based organizations around Burma’s borders, has compiled extensive data in the report on how the regime’s failed policies have impacted women and girls, particularly in the areas of education, health, rural development, and violence against women. The findings strongly contradict the claims in the country report by the ruling military regime, the State Peace and Development Council (SPDC), that women in Burma “enjoy their rights even before they are born.” The report exposes how the regime is profiting from the sale of the country’s natural resources to build up the military and its GONGOs, and how systematic militarization and prioritization of military expenditure has reinforced the existing patriarchal system. It analyzes how the regime’s new constitution not only fails to effectively promote gender equality, but guarantees that the armed forces, an almost exclusively male institution, will control a quarter of seats in the government. The report states: “The face of public life in Burma is male, because the culture of Burma today is profoundly militarized. The military presence pervades every village, town and city, every branch and level of its administration, and every situation involving power and status.” The report exposes how national women’s organizations are merely for show. They are led by wives of SPDC commanders, who promote the regime’s policies and abuse their power at every level. The report reiterates that there can be no advancement of the lives of women and girls in Burma, and no protection and promotion of their rights while the military and its proxy organizations remain in power. “The regime’s road map to disciplined democracy is simply a road-map to further patriarchy,” said Nang Yain (General Secretary of the Women’s League of Burma) “We need genuine political reform to work for gender equality in Burma.”"
Language: English
Source/publisher: Women's League of Burma
Format/size: pdf (5,38MB, original; 4.1MB (alternate URL)
Alternate URLs: http://www.womenofburma.org
http://www.womenofburma.org/Report/IntheShadow-Junta-CEDAW2008.pdf
Date of entry/update: 05 November 2008


Title: IWRAW Country Reports: Myanmar
Date of publication: 1999
Language: English
Source/publisher: International Women's Rights Action Watch
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 29 November 2010


Title: Licence to Rape
Date of publication: May 2002
Description/subject: "The Burmese military regime's use of sexual violence in the ongoing war in Shan State...This report details 173 incidents of rape and other forms of sexual violence, involving 625 girls and women, committed by Burmese army troops in Shan State, mostly between 1996 and 2001... The report gives clear evidence that rape is officially condoned as a 'weapon of war' against the civilian populations in Shan State. There appears to be a concerted strategy by the Burmese army troops to rape Shan women as part of their anti-insurgency activities. The incidents detailed were committed by soldiers from 52 different battalions. 83% of the rapes were committed by officers, usually in front of their own troops. The rapes involved extreme brutality and often torture such as beating, mutilation and suffocation. 25% of the rapes resulted in death, in some incidences with bodies being deliberately displayed to local communities...Evidence in this report has revealed that the Burmese military regime is using rape on a systematic and widespread scale as a 'weapon of war' against the ethnic populations in Shan State. It has also illustrated that the increased militarization of the region has greatly increased the vulnerability of women and girls to rape. Examining the jurisprudence from the ICTY and ICTR on sexual violence as an international crime, illustrates there is a strong case that war crimes and crimes against humanity are being committed by the Burmese army in Shan State. The rape survivors have no recourse either to legal processes, or to any crisis support inside Shan State. Those fleeing to Thailand are also denied their right to protection and humanitarian assistance, and are liable to deportation at any time..."
Language: English, Burmese, Deutsch, German, Japanese (summary)
Source/publisher: Shan Human Rights Foundation, Shan Women's Action Network
Format/size: PDF (1.8MB) and html (in sections)
Alternate URLs: http://www.shanland.org/resources/bookspub/humanrights/LtoR/
http://www.shanwomen.org/pdf/LTR_in_Burmese.pdf (Burmese version)
http://www.friends-of-shan.de/swan-report/index.html (German version)
http://www.burmainfo.org/swan/LTRsummary_jp.html (Japanese summary, HTML)
http://www.burmainfo.org/swan/LTRsummary_jp.pdf (Japanese summary, PDF)
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


Title: Lizenz zur Vergewaltigung- "Licence to rape"
Date of publication: May 2002
Description/subject: Deutsche Übersetzung des Artikels "Licence to rape" Die in Nordthailand im Exil ansässige Menschenrechtsorganisation "Shan Women's Action Network" (SWAN) erstellte im Mai 2002 einen umfassenden und detaillierten Bericht über die weitverbreitete Anwendung sexueller Gewalt gegen Frauen und Mädchen im Shan Staat (im Nordosten des burmesischen Staatsgebiets). Dieser Bericht trägt den schockierenden Titel: "License to Rape" - Lizenz zur Vergewaltigung Der Report belegt detailliert, dass das burmesische Militär in systematischer Weise Vergewaltigungen als Mittel der Kriegsführung gegen das Volk der Shan benutzt Inhalt Vergewaltigung als "Kriegswaffe" geduldet Militarisierung verursacht zunehmende Gefährdung durch Vergewaltigung Zwangsarbeit Die Überlebenden Sexuelle Gewalt als internationales Verbrechen
Author/creator: Shan Herald Agency for News- Deutsche Übersetzung: Freunde der Shan
Language: Deutsch, German
Source/publisher: Freunde der Shan
Format/size: HTML
Alternate URLs: http://www.freunde-der-shan.de/?p=23
Date of entry/update: 11 August 2006


Title: Myanmar: Torture of Ethnic Minority Women
Date of publication: 17 July 2001
Description/subject: Torture and other forms of cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment of men, women and children, both in ethnic minority areas and in central Myanmar, has taken place for decades. This report examines the torture and ill-treatment of women from ethnic minorities in particular by the tatmadaw (armed forces). Ethnic minorities, who make up a third of the country's population, mainly live in seven states in the country . . . Amnesty International has documented serious human rights violations by the tatmadaw: extra-judicial executions, "disappearances," torture and cruel treatment of ethnic minority civilians, including the rape and sexual abuse of women. Torture in ethnic minority areas generally takes place in the context of forced labour and portering; forced relocation, and in detention at army camps, military intelligence centres, in people's homes, fields and villages. Many individuals have died as a result of torture or been killed after being tortured. Force and the threat of force is regularly used to compel members of ethnic minorities to comply with military directives - which may range from orders for villages to relocate; to provide unpaid labourers to military forces; to not harvesting their crops. Torture, including rape, is particularly widespread in those states where armed resistance continues and the army is engaged in counter-insurgency operations against armed groups. ... ADDITIONAL KEYWORDS: forced resettlement, forced relocation, forced movement, forced displacement, forced migration, forced to move, displaced
Language: English,French
Source/publisher: Amnesty International
Format/size: html, pdf
Alternate URLs: http://www.amnesty.org/en/library/asset/ASA16/017/2001/en/ba1e04f0-d90b-11dd-ad8c-f3d4445c118e/asa160172001fr.pdf (French)
http://www.amnesty.org/en/library/info/ASA16/017/2001/en
Date of entry/update: 19 November 2010


Title: No Safe Place: Burma's Army and the Rape of Ethnic Women
Date of publication: April 2003
Description/subject: "Burma's army is using rape as a weapon of war against women from Burma's numerous ethnic groups. Recent international attention on rape by the army has focused on abuses against Shan women. But following a research mission by Refugees International (RI) to the Thai-Burmese border, RI was able to confirm that rape is widespread, affecting women from numerous ethnic groups. In its report titled No Safe Place: Burma's Army and the Rape of Ethnic Women, RI documented 43 rapes among women from the Karen, Karenni, Mon, Tavoyan and Shan ethnicities. Seventy-five percent of women interviewed in RI focus groups reported knowing someone who had been raped. In nearly one third of the cases, rapes were committed by higher-ranking officers, and in only two cases were any punishments given, these extremely weak. These statistics indicate that there is a permissive attitude towards rape by those overseeing lower ranking soldiers. Although Burma's State Peace and Development Council (SPDC) has denied allegations that its military uses rape as a weapon of war, any admissions of rape have been attributed to rogue elements or the occasional unruly soldier. RI's report disputes this. "Rape is widespread and committed with impunity, both by officers and lower ranking soldiers. The culture of impunity contributes to an atmosphere in which rape is permissible," said Veronika Martin, advocate for RI. The report goes on to suggest that rape is not only widespread, but also systematic in nature. "Due to the lack of punishment to perpetrators, it leads to the conclusion that the system for protecting civilians is faulty, which in turn suggests the rape is systematic," explained Betsy Apple, a human rights lawyer who worked as a consultant for RI... This report is the first to look at the issue of rape across ethnic boundaries. It examines the SPDC's responsibility under international law and whether rape by Burma's army constitutes War Crimes or other gross violations. The report further emphasizes that rapes are not a deviation, committed by rebel soldiers; they are a pattern of brutal abuse designed to control, terrorize and harm ethnic nationality populations though their women..."
Author/creator: Veronika Martin, Betsy Apple
Language: English
Source/publisher: Refugees International
Format/size: Word, pdf (894 K)
Alternate URLs: http://repository.forcedmigration.org/show_metadata.jsp?pid=fmo:3162
Date of entry/update: 25 November 2010


Title: Ongoing Impunity: Continued Burma Army Atrocities Against the Kachin People
Date of publication: June 2012
Description/subject: Summary: "This report provides an update of atrocities committed by the Burma Army against civilians since it broke its 17-year ceasefire with the Kachin Independence Army (KIA) one year ago. It highlights the particular suffering of women during the conflict, who have been forced to be porters, used as sex slaves, gang-raped and killed. Since the start of the conflict, there has been a huge deployment of Burmese troops into Kachin State and northern Shan State. Currently about 150 battalions are being used to crush the KIA, tripling the number of Burmese troops in the area. These troops have deliberately targeted civilians for abuse, causing villagers to flee in terror, leaving large swathes of countryside depopulated. There is strong evidence that Burmese troops have used rape systematically as a weapon of war. In the past year, KWAT has documented the rape or sexual assault of at least 43 women and girls, of whom 21 were killed. The rapes have been widespread, occurred in thirteen townships, by ten different battalions. Women have been openly kept as sex slaves by military officers, and gang-raped in church. There has been complete impunity for these crimes. When the husband of a Kachin woman abducted by the Burmese military tried to press charges, the Naypyidaw Supreme Court dismissed the case without even hearing his evidence. The continued abuse against civilians has swelled the numbers of internally displaced persons in Kachin State to over 75,000, most of whom are sheltering in makeshift camps along the China border, where little international aid has reached them. KWAT is calling on the international community to denounce the ongoing human rights abuses, and maintain pressure on the Burmese government to immediately implement a nationwide ceasefire, pull back Burma Army troops from ethnic areas and start dialogue with the United Nationalities Federal Council towards a process of genuine political reform."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Kachin Women's Association Thailand (KWAT)
Format/size: pdf (1.4MB-OBL version; 8.2MB-original))
Alternate URLs: http://www.kachinwomen.com/images/stories/publication/ongoing_iimpunity%20.pdf
Date of entry/update: 11 June 2012


Title: Only genuine peace in Burma can protect women from systematic rape
Date of publication: 08 March 2003
Description/subject: International Women's Day statement/open letter to Professor Pinheiro, Special Rapporteur on Myanmar of the Commission on Human Rights
Language: English
Source/publisher: ALTSEAN-Burma, Forum-Asia, APWLD, Friends Without Borders
Format/size: pdf (135K)
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


Title: Overcoming Shadows
Date of publication: 2004
Description/subject: "This book contains stories and articles written by women from Burma participating in a project to aid the process of building peace in their home country. In particular, the volume arose from a training held in February 2003, entitled “Building Inner Peace.” This was the second training of the project, with the first five week training held in March 2002. In the six months following the training, the participants returned to their communities to conduct workshops in different countries, including Bangladesh, China, India and Thailand. The training programs are the implementation of a decision made by Women’s League of Burma (WLB) at their first conference in December 2000 to prioritize the peace building process. The WLB is trying to contribute to genuine peace by broadening the peace process in Burma, beyond the cease-fire agreements between the armed opposition groups and the military regime. The goal of the WLB is to contribute to a genuine peace, where all are free, from all forms violence. There can only be genuine peace when women are free from domestic and sexual violence in the home and wider community. The second training took place as the training participants wanted to share their experiences and to deepen their expertise in peace building techniques and strengthen their understanding of gender issues. The organizers themselves believe that an understanding of the nature of violence against women and techniques to improve personal development will strengthen women, enabling them to better deal with some of the obstacles they encounter in their work for peace. This book is part of the breaking of the culture of silence around sexual abuse and discrimination in the different communities in Burma. It is not a chronicle of abuse. If anyone is interested in violations, then one only has to read the myriad of reports on human rights violations for a taste of the systematic violations of the rights of both women and men in Burma. Rather, this book reflects the attempts of 16 women to understand the particular forms of injustice women experience..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Women as Peacebuilders Team, Women's League of Burma
Format/size: pdf (359K) 42 pages
Date of entry/update: 07 November 2004


Title: Report of the ILO Commission of Inquiry: customised version highlighting violence against women
Date of publication: 02 July 1998
Description/subject: Extracts 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 (383K)
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


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


Title: Same Impunity, Same Patterns ( Burmese/ ျမန္မာဘာသာ )
Date of publication: 14 January 2014
Description/subject: Executive Summary: "Almost a decade ago, the Women’s League of Burma (WLB) denounced systematic patterns of sexual crimes committed by the Burma Army against ethnic women and demanded an end to the prevailing system of impunity. Today WLB is renewing these calls. Three years after a nominally civilian government came to power; state-sponsored sexual violence continues to threaten the lives of women in Burma. Women of Burma endure a broad range of violations; this report focuses on sexual violence, as the most gendered crime. WLB and its member organizations have gathered documentation showing that over 100 women have been raped by the Burma Army since the elections of 2010. Due to restrictions on human rights documentation, WLB believes these are only a fraction of the actual abuses taking place. Most cases are linked to the military offensives in Kachin and Northern Shan States since 2011. The Kachin Women’s Association Thailand (KWAT) documented that 59 women have been victims of acts of sexual violence committed by Burmese soldiers. 1 The Shan Women’s Action Network (SWAN) reports 30 cases of sexual violence involving 35 women and girls in the past three years. 2 The incidence of rape correlates with the timing of conflict. These crimes are more than random, isolated acts by rogue soldiers. Their widespread and systematic nature indicates a structural pattern: rape is still used as an instrument of war and oppression. 47 cases were brutal gang rapes, several victims were as young as 8 years old and 28 of the women were either killed or died of their injuries. Over 38 different battalions are implicated in these cases, while several battalions are involved across multiple cases and timeframes, and the incidents took place in at least 35 different townships. These rapes cannot be explained away as a human impulse gone astray. The use of sexual violence in conflict is a strategy and an act of warfare that has political and economic dimensions that go beyond individual cases. In Burma, counter- insurgency tactics designate civilians in ethnic areas as potential threats. Sexual violence is used as a tool by the Burmese military to demoralize and destroy ethnic communities. Army officers are not only passively complicit in these sexual crimes but often perpetrators themselves. Combined with blatant impunity, soldiers are given a “license to rape”, as SWAN highlighted in 2002. Several international treaties to which Burma is party, and other sources of international law applicable to Burma prohibit sexual violence; rape is also criminalized under Burma’s penal code. But neither international nor domestic laws are enforced effectively. The systematic and widespread 2 use of sexual violence by the Burma Army makes the abuses documented in this report potential war crimes and crimes against humanity under international law, requiring thorough independent investigation. It is high time for Burma’s government to take responsibility and live up to the expectations the recent changes have created, to restore the dignity that women of Burma deserve. This can only be achieved through truth and justice for the violence women endure. It necessitates not only an immediate end to the violence, but also a deep reform of Burma’s legal framework. Changing the 2008 Constitution, which gives the military the right to independently administer all its affairs, is the first step towards ensuring justice for the women of Burma. Judicial independence has to be guaranteed by the constitution, to allow for reform of the judicial system that will ensure its impartiality. The court-martial system, established by the Constitution to adjudicate all crimes committed by the military, has an unrestricted mandate and overly broad powers: it needs to be reformed to place the military under civilian judicial control. In both military and civilian jurisdictions, victims’ access to justice has to be ensured through appropriate complaint mechanisms. At the moment, the National Human Rights Commission does not have the mandate, capacity and willingness to address serious human rights violations in an independent and transparent manner. If the government is serious about its commitments to address violence against women, it should acknowledge ongoing abuses against ethnic women, sign the recent international declaration for prevention of sexual violence in conflict, and adopt laws specifically aimed at protecting women from violence. Recent proposals set out concrete requirements for effective legal protection for women. In addition, the government needs to deeply change its political approach to the peace process, in order to make it a meaningful way to end abuses. Achieving sustainable peace and putting an end to abuses against women will not happen without women’s representation in the political dialogue for peace. The fact that almost all the participants involved in the official peace process are male excludes critical perspectives on peace and conflict, and preserves structural gender inequality. 3 Moreover, it is crucial that the upcoming political dialogue addresses past human rights violations as well as the role of the army. This includes accepting that, in a free country, the military is subject to civilian authorities representing the genuine will of the people. Unless and until the military is placed under civilian control through constitutional amendments, we will not see an end to militarized sexual violence."
Language: Burmese/ ျမန္မာဘာသာ
Source/publisher: Women's League of Burma
Format/size: pdf (2.4MB)
Alternate URLs: http://www.womenofburma.org
Date of entry/update: 15 January 2014


Title: Same Impunity, Same Patterns (English)
Date of publication: 14 January 2014
Description/subject: Executive Summary: "Almost a decade ago, the Women’s League of Burma (WLB) denounced systematic patterns of sexual crimes committed by the Burma Army against ethnic women and demanded an end to the prevailing system of impunity. Today WLB is renewing these calls. Three years after a nominally civilian government came to power; state-sponsored sexual violence continues to threaten the lives of women in Burma. Women of Burma endure a broad range of violations; this report focuses on sexual violence, as the most gendered crime. WLB and its member organizations have gathered documentation showing that over 100 women have been raped by the Burma Army since the elections of 2010. Due to restrictions on human rights documentation, WLB believes these are only a fraction of the actual abuses taking place. Most cases are linked to the military offensives in Kachin and Northern Shan States since 2011. The Kachin Women’s Association Thailand (KWAT) documented that 59 women have been victims of acts of sexual violence committed by Burmese soldiers.1 The Shan Women’s Action Network (SWAN) reports 30 cases of sexual violence involving 35 women and girls in the past three years.2 The incidence of rape correlates with the timing of conflict. These crimes are more than random, isolated acts by rogue soldiers. Their widespread and systematic nature indicates a structural pattern: rape is still used as an instrument of war and oppression. 47 cases were brutal gang rapes, several victims were as young as 8 years old and 28 of the women were either killed or died of their injuries. Over 38 different battalions are implicated in these cases, while several battalions are involved across multiple cases and timeframes, and the incidents took place in at least 35 different townships. These rapes cannot be explained away as a human impulse gone astray. The use of sexual violence in conflict is a strategy and an act of warfare that has political and economic dimensions that go beyond individual cases. In Burma, counterinsurgency tactics designate civilians in ethnic areas as potential threats. Sexual violence is used as a tool by the Burmese military to demoralize and destroy ethnic communities. Army officers are not only passively complicit in these sexual crimes but often perpetrators themselves. Combined with blatant impunity, soldiers are given a “license to rape”, as SWAN highlighted in 2002. Several international treaties to which Burma is party, and other sources of international law applicable to Burma prohibit sexual violence; rape is also criminalized under Burma’s penal code. But neither international nor domestic laws are enforced effectively. The systematic and widespread use of sexual violence by the Burma Army makes the abuses documented in this report potential war crimes and crimes against humanity under international law, requiring thorough independent investigation. It is high time for Burma’s government to take responsibility and live up to the expectations the recent changes have created, to restore the dignity that women of Burma deserve. This can only be achieved through truth and justice for the violence women endure. It necessitates not only an immediate end to the violence, but also a deep reform of Burma’s legal framework. Changing the 2008 Constitution, which gives the military the right to independently administer all its affairs, is the first step towards ensuring justice for the women of Burma. Judicial independence has to be guaranteed by the constitution, to allow for reform of the judicial system that will ensure its impartiality. The court-martial system, established by the Constitution to adjudicate all crimes committed by the military, has an unrestricted mandate and overly broad powers: it needs to be reformed to place the military under civilian judicial control. In both military and civilian jurisdictions, victims’ access to justice has to be ensured through appropriate complaint mechanisms. At the moment, the National Human Rights Commission does not have the mandate, capacity and willingness to address serious human rights violations in an independent and transparent manner. If the government is serious about its commitments to address violence against women, it should acknowledge ongoing abuses against ethnic women, sign the recent international declaration for prevention of sexual violence in conflict, and adopt laws specifically aimed at protecting women from violence. Recent proposals set out concrete requirements for effective legal protection for women. In addition, the government needs to deeply change its political approach to the peace process, in order to make it a meaningful way to end abuses. Achieving sustainable peace and putting an end to abuses against women will not happen without women’s representation in the political dialogue for peace. The fact that almost all the participants involved in the official peace process are male excludes critical perspectives on peace and conflict, and preserves structural gender inequality.3 Moreover, it is crucial that the upcoming political dialogue addresses past human rights violations as well as the role of the army. This includes accepting that, in a free country, the military is subject to civilian authorities representing the genuine will of the people. Unless and until the military is placed under civilian control through constitutional amendments, we will not see an end to militarized sexual violence."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Women's League of Burma
Format/size: pdf (1.6K)
Alternate URLs: http://womenofburma.org/
Date of entry/update: 15 January 2014


Title: School for Rape
Date of publication: February 1998
Description/subject: The Burmese Military and Sexual Violence. " This report seeks to make visible the structural origins of the rape of ethnic Burmese women, with particular attention paid to the institution that nurtures the rapists, the Burmese army. The report is based on primary research consisting of original interviews with defectors from the Burmese army, and villagers who lived in close proximity to the army, often because their villages were occupied by the army. By examining the military structures giving rise to prevalent rape, this report proposes not to absolve the soldier perpetrators of responsibilities for their crimes. Rather, we look for the root causes so we can advocate for institutional change as well as establish individual culpability and argue for individual punishment... Rape by the Burmese military, particularly against ethnic minority women, is an intrinsic component of the conflict in Burma. This report hypothesizes that the prevalence of rape in Burma is enabled by a number of larger cultural factors.
Author/creator: Betsy Apple
Language: English
Source/publisher: Earthrights International
Format/size: pdf (283K) 82 pages
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


Title: SLORC Rape in Thaton District
Date of publication: 01 February 1993
Description/subject: Nov-Dec 92. Karen F, C: rape of woman in bed with her children; looting; killing.
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG) Regional & Thematic Reports
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


Title: SLORC Statement to Beijing Women's Conference
Date of publication: 04 September 1995
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


Title: SLORC's Use of Women Porters
Date of publication: 16 February 1993
Description/subject: "Late 92. Karen, men, women, children: Forced portering; killing; torture; forced labour (incl. mine-sweeping); use of human shields (porters forced to put on army uniforms and go ahead of the march); use of porters to carry ammunition to the soldiers during fighting; abandonment of wounded porters; gang rape; old women and children used as porters; inhuiman treatment (beating, deprivation of sleep, food, water and medicine); rape; looting; extortion; women and children forced to do mine-sweeping..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG) Regional & Thematic Reports
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


Title: State of Terror
Date of publication: February 2007
Description/subject: The ongoing rape, murder, torture and forced labour suffered by women living under the Burmese Military Regime in Karen State... Executive Summary: "This report, "State of Terror" clearly documents the range of human rights abuses that continue to be perpetrated across Karen State as part of the SPDC’s sustained campaign of terror. The report focuses in particular on the abuses experienced by women and girls and draws on over 40001 documented cases of human rights abuses perpetrated by the SPDC. These case studies provide shocking evidence of the entrenched and widespread abuses perpetrated against the civilian population of Karen State by the Burmese Military Regime. Many of the recent accounts of human rights violations which occurred in late 2005 and 2006 provide irrefutable evidence that the SPDC’s attacks during this period have increased and have deliberately targeted the civilian population. The recent dramatic increase in the number of internally displaced people (IDPs) as well as in those crossing the border in search of asylum, bears further testimony to the escalation of attacks on the civilian women, men and children of Karen State. The report builds on the findings contained in "Shattering Silences", published by the Karen Women’s Organisation in April 2004. That report detailed the alarmingly high number of women and girls who have been raped by the military during the years of the SPDC’s occupation of Karen State. This new report documents the range of other human rights abuses experienced by Karen women and girls, in particular those of forced labour and forced portering. The report locates these atrocities within a human rights framework, to show the direct link of accountability the SPDC bears for the violations committed in these cases. It also demonstrates the multiplicity of human rights violations occurring, as forced labour is often committed in conjunction with other human rights violations such as rape, beating, mutilation, torture, murder, denial of rights to food, water and shelter, and denial of the right to legal redress. These human rights abuses occur as part of a strategy designed to terrorise and subjugate the Karen people, to completely destroy their culture and communities. This report demonstrates very clearly that it is the women who bear the greatest burden of these systematic attacks, as they are doubly oppressed both on the grounds of their ethnicity and their gender. Attacks have continued in spite of the informal ceasefire agreement reached with the SPDC in January 2004. It is clear that rather than honouring the agreement, the SPDC have proceeded with systematic reinforcement of their military infrastructure across Karen State, bringing in more troops, increasing their stocks of food and ammunition and building army camps across the state. From this position of increased strength the SPDC have conducted ongoing attacks on villages across Karen State since September 2005. As this report goes to press over one year later, it is clear that rather than abating, the intensity of these attacks has only increased. Karen women and children continue to be killed and raped by SPDC soldiers, are subjected to forced labour, including portering, and are displaced from their homes. In the first half of 2006 alone KWO received reports of almost 5,000 villagers being taken as forced labourers, with over five times that many being forcibly relocated from their villages as their farms, homes and rice paddies were burned. As a consequence, increasing numbers of refugees are fleeing across the border into Thailand and many, many more are internally displaced. The world now knows the full extent of human rights violations being committed by the SPDC, particularly against women and children from the ethnic groups across Burma. The situation is past critical. The international community must take immediate action to stop these most grave atrocities."
Language: English
Source/publisher: The Karen Women's Organisation (KWO)
Format/size: pdf (1.8MB)
Date of entry/update: 13 February 2007


Title: Statement by Naw Htoo Paw
Date of publication: 21 April 1992
Description/subject: "Kyauk Kyi Township, Jan-Feb 92. F, Karen: Forced labour (building an army camp); rape; IT; worry about children left in the village..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG) Regional & Thematic Reports
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


Title: Statement of Naw Mya Thaung
Date of publication: 24 January 1992
Description/subject: Shwegung Township. Karen women, children: mass gang rape; (including of children and old women; killing; beating of a monk; looting; pillaging (destroying property and burning crops)in a Karen village, which was subsequently abandoned.
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG) Regional & Thematic Reports
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


Title: SYSTEM OF IMPUNITY: Nationwide Patterns of Sexual Violence by the Military Regime’s Army and Authorities in Burma
Date of publication: 04 September 2004
Description/subject: Executive Summary: "This report 'System of Impunity' documents detailed accounts of sexual violence against women in all the ethnic states, as well as in central areas of Burma. These stories demonstrate patterns of continuing widespread, and systematic human rights violations being perpetrated by the regime’s armed forces and authorities. Women and girls from different ethnic groups report similar stories of rape, including gang rape; rape and murder; sexual slavery; and forced “marriage”. Significantly, almost all the incidents took place during the last two years, precisely while the regime has been repeatedly denying the prevalence of military rape in Burma. These stories bear witness to the fact that, despite the regime’s claims to the contrary, nothing has changed in Burma. Regardless of their location, be it in the civil war zones, the ceasefire areas or “non-conflict” areas, it is clear that no woman or girl is safe from rape and sexual torture under the current regime. Soldiers, captains, commanders and other SPDC officials continue to commit rape, gang rape and murder of women and children, with impunity. The documented stories demonstrate the systematic and structuralized nature of the violence, and the climate of impunity which not only enables the military to evade prosecution for rape and other crimes against civilian women, but also fosters a culture of continued and escalating violence. Even when crimes are reported no action is taken and moreover complainants are victimised, threatened or imprisoned. Women and children continue to be raped, used as sex slaves, tortured and murdered across the country by the regime’s armed forces and authorities. It is clear that the rapes and violence are not committed by rogue elements within the military but are central to the modus operandi of this regime. Structuralized and systematic human rights violations, including sexual violence, are an inevitable result of the regime’s policies of military expansion and consolidation of control by all possible means over a disenfranchised civilian population. This is why there can be no other solution to the problem of systematic sexual violence in Burma than an end to military rule. While countries in the region, members of ASEAN, and particularly Burma’s neighbours, appear willing to overlook human rights issues in their dealings with Burma, women of Burma wish to highlight that these policies of constructive engagement have grave repercussions for the citizens of Burma, particularly women and children. The political support which the regime is gaining from the region is emboldening it to continue its policies of militarization and accompanying sexual violence. It is directly placing the lives of women and girls in Burma at risk..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Women's League of Burma (WLB)
Format/size: pdf (946K), Word (936K), 81 pages
Alternate URLs: http://www.womenofburma.org/Report/SYSTEM_OF_IMPUNITY.doc
http://www.ibiblio.org/obl/docs3/SYSTEM_OF_IMPUNITY.pdf
http://www.ibiblio.org/obl/docs3/SYSTEM_OF_IMPUNITY-1.doc
Date of entry/update: 04 September 2004


Title: THE USE OF RAPE AS A WEAPON OF WAR IN BURMA’S ETHNIC AREAS (English, French)
Date of publication: March 2012
Description/subject: "With a population of over 50 million people, Burma is comprised of eight major ethnic nationalities: Burman, Shan, Karen, Karenni, Mon, Chin, Kachin and Arakan. Burma’s ethnic groups demand equality, autonomy and self-determination, but are systematically denied their rights by the regime. Instead, they are met with human rights violations: forced labor, forced relocation, religious persecution, arbitrary arrest and detention, destruction of thousands of ethnic villages, the driving out of hundreds of thousands of ethnic civilians to neighboring countries, and the forced internal displacement of an estimated one million people. Worse yet is that Burmese military soldiers are raping the ethnic women and girls with impunity. Women and girls from the Shan, Kachin, Chin, Karen, Mon, Karenni and Arakan states have long suffered under these state-sanctioned sex crimes. Rape incidents in ethnic areas are higher than anywhere else in Burma because they are part of the regime’s strategy to punish the armed resistance groups or used as a tool to repress various peoples in the larger agenda of ethnic cleansing. Although rape has been used by the regime to control the population for decades, it took years and the courage of many women to document these crimes. In recent years, the different women’s groups operating in Burma started documenting the systematic sexual violence against ethnic women by the State army soldiers. The total number of rape victims documented in these reports from Chin, Shan, Karen, Mon and Kachin states totals 1,859 girls and women, with some accounts going back as far as 1995. As a result of these reports, the UN Special Rapporteur for Human Rights in Burma has repeatedly raised concerns about the widespread use of sexual violence by the regime’s troops. However, the military regime and the “new”, nominally civilian government of Burma, has continued to deny this atrocity and the sexual violence continues. This report will look into the meaning of “rape as a weapon of war”, the way it is used by the Burmese military and the response that the Burmese government and the international community could provide to stop such practice..."
Language: Français, French, English
Source/publisher: Info Birmanie, Swedish Burma Committee
Format/size: pdf (346K - English; 390K, French)
Alternate URLs: http://www.info-birmanie.org/web/images/stories/Rapport_le_viol_comme_arme_de_guerre_Mars_2012.pdf
Date of entry/update: 10 May 2012


Title: Torture of Karen Women by SLORC
Date of publication: 16 February 1993
Description/subject: Latter half of 92. Karen F: torture; looting; forced labour; extortion; killing; pillaging (burning of houses); details of torture
Language: English
Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


Title: United Call for Justice for Shan Women in Burma
Date of publication: 26 August 2002
Description/subject: "We heard, we read, we know. And we are outraged. We, from various international and regional organizations, come together to express our collective disgust and anger over the widespread and systematic use of rape as a weapon of war by the Burmese military regime. We ask the international community to take immediate action to end these practices and to protect the victims. The data that has been documented by the brave women of the Shan Womens Action Network (SWAN) and Shan Human Rights Foundation (SHRF), published as Licence to Rape, has brought to public attention what, up until now, has been whispered in fear throughout the communities that have been ravaged by these acts of terror..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Petition
Format/size: pdf
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


Title: Unsung Heroines: the Women of Myanmar
Date of publication: 24 May 2000
Description/subject: Women in Myanmar have been subjected to a wide range of human rights violations, including political imprisonment, torture and rape, forced labour, and forcible relocation, all at the hands of the military authorities. At the same time women have played an active role in the political and economic life of the country. It is the women who manage the family finances and work alongside their male relatives on family farms and in small businesses. Women have been at the forefront of the pro-democracy movement which began in 1988, many of whom were also students or female leaders within opposition political parties. Burman and non-Burman women. List of women in prison.ADDITIONAL KEYWORDS: forced resettlement, forced relocation, forced movement, forced displacement, forced migration, forced to move, displaced
Language: English
Source/publisher: Amnesty International USA (ASA 16/04/00)
Format/size: html
Alternate URLs: http://www.amnesty.org/en/library/info/ASA16/004/2000/en
http://www.amnestyusa.org/document.php?lang=e&id=EA7452D0C7C763F9802568E80064E12E
http://www.amnesty.org/en/library/asset/ASA16/004/2000/en/e8ec29a6-df28-11dd-a3b7-b978e1cb2058/asa160042000es.pdf (Spanish)
http://www.amnesty.org/en/library/asset/ASA16/004/2000/en/ed205dae-df28-11dd-a3b7-b978e1cb2058/asa160042000fr.pdf (French)
Date of entry/update: 25 November 2010


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: 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: VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN (Chapter from "Gathering Strength")
Date of publication: January 2002
Description/subject: OVERVIEW; WOMEN IN WAR; RELOCATION & DISPLACEMENT; SEXUAL VIOLENCE & ARMED CONFLICT; SEXUAL VIOLENCE IN AREAS OF MILITARY OCCUPATION; SEXUAL VIOLENCE ACROSS BORDERS: REFUGEES & MIGRANTS; SEXUAL VIOLENCE IN THE COMMUNITY; REPORTING & PUNISHMENT OF SEXUAL VIOLENCE; FORCED MARRIAGE; DOMESTIC VIOLENCE; DOMESTIC VIOLENCE IN RELOCATION & REFUGE; GOVERNMENT PROGRAMS ON DOMESTIC VIOLENCE; FINDINGS & RECOMMENDATIONS.
Author/creator: Brenda Belak
Language: English
Source/publisher: Images Asia
Format/size: PDF (745K)
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


Title: Voices for Change: Domestic Violence and Gender Discrimination in the Palaung Area (Burmese)
Date of publication: 25 November 2011
Description/subject: Executive Summary: "This report documents how women in the Palaung area are affected by domestic violence and gender discrimination. Survey results collected by PWO show that almost all respondents had experienced or seen physical violence within families in their community, and that physical violence is occurring with alarming frequency, in many cases on an almost daily basis. PWO’s research shows that gender discrimination is widespread in the Palaung area, and that many people’s attitudes conform to traditional gender stereotypes which assume that women must fulfil the role of homemaker and accept sole responsibility for childcare duties. Since the 2010 election, Burma’s military-backed regime has failed to take any effective action to promote women’s rights and gender equality, or to uphold its commitments to CEDAW. Burma remains one of only two ASEAN countries lacking a specific law criminalising domestic violence, and PWO’s research has found that there are no government-led projects to raise awareness of domestic violence and women’s rights in the rural areas of northern Shan State, where the vast majority of the Palaung population live. The ‘new’ regime has yet to address the economic and social crises fuelling domestic violence in the Palaung area. The economic crisis afflicting the Palaung people as a direct result of the state’s monopoly of the tea industry, as well as the increase in opium cultivation and addiction in the Palaung area since the 2010 election have directly contributed to the problem of domestic violence, as males resort to physical violence as a means of expressing their anger and frustration with their situation. More than five decades of civil war have bred a culture of male domination, fear, and violence in Burma. Palaung people, especially males, have been socialised into this culture, and see violence as a necessary means of asserting their authority over their wives, in the same way as the state uses violence to assert its authority over Burma’s ethnic nationalities. The regime appears to have no intention of bringing an end to Burma’s culture of violence, and continues to wage war against ethnic rebels in northern Shan State. 5 Domestic violence has a devastating impact on individuals, families and communities. Apart from the obvious physical impact of domestic violence, women also suffer psychologically. Domestic violence threatens the stability of the family unit, often has a negative impact on children’s education, and acts as an obstacle to community development. Burma’s military-backed regime needs to recognise domestic violence and gender discrimination as obstacles to achieving a peaceful society in Burma, and to embark upon a program of genuine political reform which addresses the social and economic factors fuelling domestic violence and gender discrimination."
Language: Burmese
Source/publisher: Palaung Women's Organization (PWO)
Format/size: pdf (1.91MB)
Alternate URLs: http://www.palaungwomen.com
Date of entry/update: 25 January 2012


Title: Voices for Change: Domestic Violence and Gender Discrimination in the Palaung Area (English)
Date of publication: 25 November 2011
Description/subject: Executive Summary: "This report documents how women in the Palaung area are affected by domestic violence and gender discrimination. Survey results collected by PWO show that almost all respondents had experienced or seen physical violence within families in their community, and that physical violence is occurring with alarming frequency, in many cases on an almost daily basis. PWO’s research shows that gender discrimination is widespread in the Palaung area, and that many people’s attitudes conform to traditional gender stereotypes which assume that women must fulfi l the role of homemaker and accept sole responsibility for childcare duties. Since the 2010 election, Burma’s military-backed regime has failed to take any effective action to promote women’s rights and gender equality, or to uphold its commitments to CEDAW. Burma remains one of only two ASEAN countries lacking a specifi c law criminalising domestic violence, and PWO’s’ research has found that there are no government-led projects to raise awareness of domestic violence and women’s rights in the rural areas of northern Shan State, where the vast majority of the Palaung population live. The ‘new’ regime has yet to address the economic and social crises fuelling domestic violence in the Palaung area. The economic crisis affl icting the Palaung people as a direct result of the state’s monopoly of the tea industry, as well as the increase in opium cultivation and addiction in the Palaung area since the 2010 election have directly contributed to the problem of domestic violence, as males resort to physical violence as a means of expressing their anger and frustration with their situation. More than fi ve decades of civil war have bred a culture of male domination, fear, and violence in Burma. Palaung people, especially males, have been socialised into this culture, and see violence as a necessary means of asserting their authority over their wives, in the same way as the state uses violence to assert its authority over Burma’s ethnic nationalities. The regime appears to have no intention of bringing an end to Burma’s culture of violence, and continues to wage war against ethnic rebels in northern Shan State. 5 Domestic violence has a devastating impact on individuals, families and communities. Apart from the obvious physical impact of domestic violence, women also suffer psychologically. Domestic violence threatens the stability of the family unit, often has a negative impact on children’s education, and acts as an obstacle to community development. Burma’s military-backed regime needs to recognise domestic violence and gender discrimination as obstacles to achieving a peaceful society in Burma, and to embark upon a program of genuine political reform which addresses the social and economic factors fuelling domestic violence and gender discrimination."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Palaung Women's Organisation
Format/size: pdf (1.5MB)
Alternate URLs: http://www.palaungwomen.com
Date of entry/update: 25 January 2012


Title: Women as targets
Date of publication: 08 August 2002
Description/subject: "Eleven women and girls from Shan State recently slipped into Thailand with grim accounts of rape, robbery and murder by Burmese soldiers Story by VASANA CHINVARAKORN Picture by SUBIN KHUENKAEW In the eyes of the Burmese State Peace and Development Council (SPDC), the stories of 11 Shan girls and women who recently slipped through the Thai border are fabrications. The women, ranging in age from 13 to 60-plus, come from different parts of Shan State. They are now living in a sheltered home in the North. They say they have come to Thailand to escape abuse, torture and rape by Burmese troops. Huddled together, the group reminds one of the faceless choruses of a Greek tragedy, the ones who are always in the back in the shadows, emerging only to sing plaintive, sad and forlorn songs before they slip back into dark anonymity. The story they are telling today is quite similar to tales that have been coming across the border for years _ one day, or night, Burmese soldiers show up at a village, clean the houses out of anything of value, rob the villagers of their cattle and then cast their eyes on the women or girls who haven't managed to flee in time. Next follows hours, sometimes days, even months, of individual and gang rape. The ``lucky'' women get out alive. Many don't..."
Author/creator: Vasana Chinvarakorn
Language: English
Source/publisher: Shanland
Format/size: html (12K)
Date of entry/update: 25 November 2010


Title: Women Political Prisoners in Burma
Date of publication: 07 October 2004
Description/subject: " Two organizations, based on the Thai-Burma border, have released an English version of a report on women political prisoners in Burma. The Burmese Women's Union (BWU) and the AAPP have worked jointly on the English version of the report and released the Burmese version in February 2004. At least 1,425 political prisoners are behind bars because of their connections with democratic movements in Burma. Nearly one hundred of these are women, including the Nobel Peace Prize winner Aung San Suu Kyi. The 200 page report, entitled "Women Political Prisoners in Burma," expresses the history of women in politics. The report covers common experiences of women in prisons and military intelligence detention centers, food and health conditions in prisons, and torture and human rights violations by prison authorities. The report also focuses upon conditions of prisoners after release, the SPDC’s Women’s Affair Committee, and movements of the SPDC relating to the United Nations Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW). There are testimonies and data regarding 19 former women detainees, and photographs of current and former women political prisoners. The AAPP and the BWU conclude by making some suggestions and demands for change to the SPDC. Tate Naing, secretary of the AAPP, releasing the report today said, "We want the people in Burma and international organizations to know that several women are in Burmese prisons because of their activities in the democracy movement. The report mentions not only their experiences, but also how they bravely struggled through the many difficulties in the prisons." ... - Forward; - Introduction; - History of Women in Politics; - Arrest and Imprisonment; - Sexual Harassment; - Judgment under the Military Government; - Torture and Ill Treatment; - Health; - Food; - Reproductive Health; - Reading in Prison; - Family Visits; - Survival; - Conditions after Release; - Terrorist Attack on May 30, 2003; - The Regime’s Women’s Affairs Committee; - The Regime Neglects the Agreements of CEDAW and Other Conventions on Women; - Demands to the Military Government in Burma; - Endnotes... - Appendices: (1) Aye Aye Khaing; (2) Aye Aye Moe; (3) Aye Aye Thin; (4) Aye Aye Win (Daw); (5) Hla Hla Htwe; (6) Kaythi Aye; (7) Khin Mar Kyi (Dr); (8) Khin San Nwe (Daw); (9) Kyu Kyu Mar (Daw); (10) Myat Mo Mo Tun; (11) Myat Sapal Moe; (12) San San (Daw); (13) San San Nwe (Tharawaddy); (14) Than Kywe (Daw); (15) Thi Thi Aung; (16) Thida Aye; (17) Yee Yee Htun; (18) Yin Yin May (Daw); (19) Yu Yu Hlaing.
Language: English, Burmese
Source/publisher: Burmese Women's Union (BWU), Assistance Association for Political Prisoners (Burma) - AAPP
Format/size: html
Alternate URLs: http://www.aappb.net/joint_report.html
Date of entry/update: 07 October 2004


Title: Women's Report Card on Burma 2001
Date of publication: June 2001
Description/subject: WOMEN AND POLITICS: The Democracy Movement, "Dialogue", Women's Organisations, Inside Burma, Outside Burma; WOMEN, POVERTY & THE ECONOMY: Living in Poverty; SPDC and Poverty; WOMEN AND EDUCATION: Access to Basic Education, Education and Politics; "Relevant History", The Re-Opening of Universities; WOMEN AND HEALTH: Access to basic health standards and facilities, Demographics; HIV/AIDS: Women, Children & HIV, HIV/AIDS Prevention, Family Planning, Refugees & Migrant Workers; VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN: Rape, Women outside Burma, Commercial Sex Workers (CSW); RESPONSIBILITY OF THE SPDC: BIBLIOGRAPHY; WHAT YOU CAN DO; CONTACTS: Women of Burma Groups, Groups Working with Women of Burma, Burma on the Internet; RESOURCES FROM ALTSEAN-BURMA.
Language: English
Source/publisher: Alternative ASEAN Network on Burma (ALTSEAN-Burma)
Format/size: HTML (286K) 36 pages; Word (158K)
Alternate URLs: http://www.ibiblio.org/obl/docs/WRC2001.doc
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003