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Forced Labour

  • ILO reports on forced labour in Burma
    See also under International Labour Organisation

    Websites/Multiple Documents

    Title: CEACR: Individual Observations Concerning ILO Convention No. 29, Forced Labour (1930) - Myanmar (ratification: 1955)
    Description/subject: ILO Committee of Experts on the Applications of Standards and Recommendations: most years from 1991.
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: International Labour Office
    Format/size: html
    Alternate URLs: http://webfusion.ilo.org/public/db/standards/normes/appl/appl-displayAllComments.cfm?hdroff=1&c...
    http://www.ilo.org/ilolex/cgi-lex/pqconv.pl?host=status01&textbase=iloeng&chspec=30&hit...
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Individual Documents

    Title: On the Run - an army porter’s story of brutality and murder
    Date of publication: March 2005
    Description/subject: "When the Burmese army hauled Naing Myint out of prison and forced him to become an ammunition porter on the frontline they actually did him a favor, opening the door to freedom. Naing Myint, a long-term prisoner, spent just two days humping ammunition before making a run for it..."
    Author/creator: Shah Paung
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: "The Irrawaddy" Vol. 13, No. 3
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 29 August 2005


    Title: ILC 2001, 89th Session: Discussion in Plenary
    Date of publication: 21 June 2001
    Description/subject: Discussion in Plenary of the report of the Committee on the Application of Standards, Part 3 of which is the report of the Special Sitting on Myanmar. The discussion includes some brief words on Burma, by the Reporter of the Committee, Ms Wiklund (Govt., Sweden), the Employer Delegate Mr Wisskirchen (Germany) and the Worker Delegate, Mr Cortebeek. The report also contains a statement by Mr Mya Than, the Myanmar Permanent Representative in Geneva. Scroll down for the references.
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: International Labour Office
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: ILC 2001: Special sitting on forced labour in Myanmar (Provisional Record) plus supporting documents
    Date of publication: 21 June 2001
    Description/subject: Provisional Record 19 (Part 3). Committee on the Application of Standards. Special sitting concerning the application by Myanmar of the Forced Labour Convention, 1930 (No. 29), in application of the resolution adopted by the International Labour Conference at its 88th (2000) Session. The document contains: A. Record of the discussion in the Committee on the Application of Standards; B.Observation of the Committee of Experts on the Application of Conventions and Recommendations; C.Documents GB.280/6, and (Add. 1) and (Add. 2) under item 6 of the agenda of the Governing Body at its 280th Session (March 2001): "Developments concerning the question of the observance by theGovernment of Myanmar of the Forced Labour Convention, 1930 (No. 29)"; D. Provision minutes of the discussion of this item; E.Developments since the 280th Session of the Governing Body (March 2001): Arrangements for an objective assessment of the situation of forced labour following measures taken by the Myanmar Government.
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: International Labour Office
    Format/size: pdf (103K)
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Forced Labour and Freedom of Association in Burma
    Date of publication: 01 May 2001
    Description/subject: in "Amnesty International's Concerns at the 89th International Labour Conference 5-21 June 2001, Geneva"
    Language: English and Spanish
    Source/publisher: Amnesty International
    Format/size: html, pdf
    Alternate URLs: http://www.amnesty.org/en/library/asset/IOR42/004/2001/en/ff6e9d96-d93b-11dd-ad8c-f3d4445c118e/ior4... (Spanish)
    http://www.amnesty.org/en/library/info/IOR42/004/2001/en
    Date of entry/update: 21 November 2010


    Title: ILO Governing Body, 280th Session, March 2001: GB.280/6
    Date of publication: March 2001
    Description/subject: Developments concerning the question of the observance by the Government of Myanmar of the Forced Labour Convention, 1930 (No. 29). Responses from the ILO constituents (workers, governments and employers) and the rest of the international community to the measures adopted by the ILC in June 2000. Updates on forced labour from various sources, communcations between the ILO and the Government of Myanmar; Appendix 9 is the Observations of the CEACR (from November 2000).
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: International Labour Office
    Format/size: PDF (214K)
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: ILO Governing Body, 280th Session, March 2001: GB.280/6 (Add.1)
    Date of publication: March 2001
    Description/subject: Developments concerning the question of the observance by the Government of Myanmar of the Forced Labour Convention, 1930 (No. 29). Additional communications received after GB.280/6 was finalized.
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: ILO
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: ILO Governing Body, 279th Session, November 2000: GB.279/6/1 (Add.2)
    Date of publication: 15 November 2000
    Description/subject: Various instructions from the Govt. of Myanmar prohibiting forced labour. Effect given by the Government of Myanmar to the recommendations of the Commission of Inquiry established to examine the observance of the Forced Labour Convention, 1930 (No. 29). Report of the ILO technical cooperation mission to Myanmar (Friday, 20 October-Thursday, 26 October 2000). Addendum. 1. The Office has received from the Government of Myanmar copies of a number of instructions mentioned in a communication dated 31 October 2000 from the Director-General of the Myanmar Department of Labour, excerpts of which are reproduced in Annex B of document GB.279/6/1(Add.1)(Rev.1). 2. These instructions are annexed...
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: International Labour Office
    Format/size: PDF
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: ILO Governing Body, 279th Session, November 2000: GB.279/6/1
    Date of publication: November 2000
    Description/subject: Report of the ILO technical cooperation mission to Myanmar (Friday, 20 October-Thursday, 26 October 2000). Effect given by the Government of Myanmar to the recommendations of the Commission of Inquiry established to examine the observance of the Forced Labour Convention, 1930 (No. 29). Report of the ILO technical cooperation mission to Myanmar (Friday, 20 October-Thursday, 26 October 2000). 1. Origin of the mission. 1. In talks with the Permanent Representative of Myanmar, Ambassador U Mya Than, shortly after the conclusion of the 88th Session of the International Labour Conference, the Director-General emphasized the need for urgent action on the part of the Myanmar authorities to give effect as quickly as possible to the resolution adopted by the Conference at its 88th Session. He recalled that the resolution in question had authorized the Office to respond positively to all requests by Myanmar for assistance in attaining that goal. On 14 July, the Director-General followed up this conversation with a letter addressed to the Minister of Labour of Myanmar (Annex 1). 2. In an interim reply dated 7 August (Annex 2), the Minister of Labour, while expressing regret that the Conference had not chosen the path of cooperation to resolve the issue, stated that consultations were in progress in Yangon with a view to the adoption of a considered position. 3. On 8 September, the Director-General met the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Myanmar, Mr. Win Aung, at the United Nations Millennium Summit. During the meeting, the Director-General again emphasized the increasing urgency of action on the part of the Myanmar authorities to give effect to the Conference resolution, given that the next session of the Governing Body was only two months away, and recalled that such action was needed in the three main areas indicated in the resolution, namely legislative, executive and administrative measures. In the absence of any concrete action in those areas, the measures adopted by the Conference would take effect. The Minister assured the Director-General..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: International Labour Office
    Format/size: PDF (233K)
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: ILO Governing Body, 279th Session, November 2000: GB.279/6/1(Add.1)(Rev.1)
    Date of publication: November 2000
    Description/subject: The chain of command in Myanmar; The document signed by Secretary-1; The communication of the Director-General of the Dept. of Labour. Effect given by the Government of Myanmar to the recommendations of the Commission of Inquiry established to examine the observance of the Forced Labour Convention, 1930 (No. 29). Report of the ILO technical cooperation mission to Myanmar (Friday, 20 October-Thursday, 26 October 2000) Addendum. 1. In paragraph 40 of its report, the mission indicated that following the announcement made by Secretary-1, new elements in the form of a document issued by the SPDC itself would probably be made available. 2. The Director-General on Friday, 3 November received a letter from the Minister of Labour which communicated the text of an instruction signed by Lieutenant-General Khin Nyunt in his capacity as Secretary-1 of the SPDC. In addition, in a separate communication addressed to the head of the mission, the Director-General of the Department of Labour specifies the measures adopted to ensure that forced labour is no longer imposed in practice. These communications are attached (Annexes A and B). 3. The following observations may assist the Governing Body in its assessment of the import of these new elements: (i) The chain of command in Myanmar 4. The highest authority in Myanmar is the State Peace and Development Council (SPDC), which includes all military regional commanders and the chiefs of staff of the army, navy and air force, but does not include government ministers. Thus, the SPDC is the highest military authority and the highest civilian authority in the country. 5. Myanmar is divided into 14 administrative areas (7 States and 7 Divisions), which are further subdivided into districts, townships, and then village tracts (in rural areas) and...
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: International Labour Office
    Format/size: PDF
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: ILO Governing Body, 279th Session, November 2000: GB.279/6/1(Add.3)
    Date of publication: November 2000
    Description/subject: "Communication from the Government of Myanmar. Effect given by the Government of Myanmar to the recommendations of the Commission of Inquiry established to examine the observance of the Forced Labour Convention, 1930 (No. 29). Report of the ILO technical cooperation mission to Myanmar (Friday, 20 October-Thursday, 26 October 2000). Addendum. The Office has received from the Government of Myanmar the attached communication..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: International Labour Office
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: International Labour Conference 2000
    Date of publication: July 2000
    Description/subject: (Useful overview and analysis) "Burma Debate" issue on ILC 2000: "Dancing with the Generals - The ILO Technical Cooperation Mission to Burma" (Mary Pack); Interviews with Lord Bill Brett, Mr. Rolf Thusing, H.E. Ambassador Asda Jayanama & Mr. Andrew Samet; ASEAN's ["alternative"] Proposal and the Compromise text - excerpts from the discussion in the Selection Committee; the text of the resolution and the result of the record vote.
    Author/creator: Mary Pack
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: "Burma Debate" Vol. VII No. 1
    Format/size: Spring/Summer issue. Undated, but probably July/August 2000
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: ILC 2000, 88th Session: Report of the Selection Committee
    Date of publication: 09 June 2000
    Description/subject: Provisional Record 6-4: Report of the Selection Committee. "Measures recommended by the Governing Body under article 33 of the Constitution Implementation of recommendations contained in the report of the Commission of Inquiry entitled Forced Labour in Myanmar (Burma)". This is the key debate in the ILC adoption of the measures on Burma which have been widely interpreted as implying sanctions. The draft resolution (enclosed in the report) submitted by the Selection Committee was endorsed by the Conference Plenary.
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: International Labour Office
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: ILC 2000, 88th Session: Forced Labour in Myanmar (Burma). Background information and recommended action.
    Date of publication: June 2000
    Description/subject: Provisional Record 4: Measures recommended by the Governing Body under article 33 of the Constitution - Implementation of recommendations contained in the report of the Commission of Inquiry on forced labour in Myanmar (Burma)
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: International Labour Office
    Alternate URLs: http://www.ilo.org/public/english/standards/relm/ilc/ilc88/pdf/pr-5.pdf
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: ILC 2000, 88th Session: Myanmar - Discussion in Plenary, text of the resolution.
    Date of publication: June 2000
    Description/subject: Discussions in plenary, text of the resolution adopted and a link to the results of the record vote.
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: International Labour Office
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: ILC 2000, 88th Session: Plenary, results of the record vote
    Date of publication: June 2000
    Description/subject: Vote on the resolution concerning the measures recommended by the Governing Body under Article 33 of the Constitution with respect to Myanmar. Record of the votes by the Government, Worker and Employer delegates. (For: 257; Against: 41; Abstentions: 31; Quorum: 271). By this resolution, the ILC adopted the measures widely interpreted as implying sanctions against Myanmar (to be triggered in November 2000 unless the Governing Body were satisfied that the recommendations of the Commission of Inquiry had been adequately fulfilled. This did not occur, and the measures came into force on 30 November 2000).
    Language: English, Francais, Espanol
    Source/publisher: International Labour Office
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: ILC 2000, 88th Session: Report of the ILO technical cooperation mission to Myanmar
    Date of publication: June 2000
    Description/subject: Provisional Record 8. Report of the ILO technical cooperation mission to Myanmar, 23-27 May 2000. The Mission's Conclusions (extract): "...Firstly, the mission believes that the Commission of Inquirys recommendations could be satisfied in a coherent and practical way if a comprehensive framework of legislative, executive, and administrative measures were adopted: i.rendering all practices constituting forced labour in the sense of Convention No. 29 illegal under national law, and ensuring that all legislative provisions in force that permit the imposition of forced labour are repealed or appropriately amended; ii.giving specific instructions to the state authorities, and notably to the responsible military authorities, regarding the consequences to be drawn from the above as regards the various forms of work mentioned in the Commissions report, and monitoring their application, so that in practice no forced or compulsory labour is imposed by any authority; iii.informing the entire population adequately and completely about the above measures as well as the penalties applicable pursuant to section 374 of the Penal Code to all those imposing forced labour; and taking concrete action to ensure that these penalties are strictly applied in practice. Secondly, as the Myanmar authorities were told by the mission, the Office could certainly help formulate and implement such a framework if the Governments commitment to take expeditious action to this effect was made sufficiently clear in the eyes of the Conference..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: International Labour Office
    Alternate URLs: http://www.ilo.org/public/english/standards/relm/ilc/ilc88/pdf/pr-8.pdf
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: The 88th International Labour Conference
    Date of publication: 01 May 2000
    Description/subject: Document - "International Labour Organization: AI's concerns at the 88th international Labour conference" ..... Amnesty International's concerns relevant to the Committee on Application of Standards
    Language: English (French and Spanish also available)
    Source/publisher: Amnesty International USA
    Format/size: html, pdf
    Alternate URLs: http://www.amnesty.org/en/library/asset/IOR42/001/2000/en/a772bb5d-df4e-11dd-89a6-e712e728ac9e/ior4... (French)
    http://www.amnesty.org/en/library/asset/IOR42/001/2000/en/ba59c031-df4e-11dd-89a6-e712e728ac9e/ior4... (Spanish)
    http://www.amnesty.org/en/library/info/IOR42/001/2000/en
    Date of entry/update: 21 November 2010


    Title: ILO Director-General: Second report to the Governing Body (Addendum)
    Date of publication: 23 March 2000
    Description/subject: Letter to the Director-General of the International Labour Office from the Director-General of the Department of Labour of the Government of Myanmar, dated 20 March 2000
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: International Labour Office
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: ILO Governing Body, 277th Session, March 2000: GB.277/6
    Date of publication: March 2000
    Description/subject: Measures, including action under Article 33 of the Constitution of the International Labour Organization, to secure compliance by the Government of Myanmar with the recommendations of the Commission of Inquiry established to examine the observance of the Forced Labour Convention, 1930 (No. 29) A. Information available on measures taken by the Government of Myanmar following the recommendations of the Commission of Inquiry, and action taken in this regard within the ILO since the 276th Session (November 1999) of the Governing Body. B. Measures that may be recommended by the Governing Body to the International Labour Conference for their possible adoption under article 33 of the Constitution
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: International Labour Office
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: ILO Governing Body, 277th Session, March 2000: GB.277/6(Add.1)
    Date of publication: March 2000
    Description/subject: Draft resolution addressed to the Conference. Measures, including action under Article 33 of the Constitution of the International Labour Organization, to secure compliance by the Government of Myanmar with the recommendations of the Commission of Inquiry established to examine the observance of the Forced Labour Convention, 1930 (No. 29)
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: International Labour Office
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: ILO Director-General: Second Report to the Governing Body
    Date of publication: 25 February 2000
    Description/subject: Second report of the Director-General to the members of the Governing Body on measures taken by the Government of Myanmar following the recommendations of the Commission of Inquiry established to examine its observance of the Forced Labour Convention, 1930 (No. 29). Contents: Introduction; I. Amendment of legislation; II. Measures to stop the exaction in practice of forced or compulsory labour and information available on actual practice; A. Measures to stop the exaction in practice of forced or compulsory labour. B. Information available on actual practice;(1) Communications from the Government; (2) Findings of the CEACR; (3) Information received upon my request of December 1999; General observations; Forms of labour and services requisitioned: (a) Portering, military camp work and other work in support of the military: (b) Work on agricultural and other production projects; (c) Construction and maintenance of roads, railways, bridges and other infrastructure work. III. Punishment of those imposing forced labour. Final observations: Appendix I. CEACR observation. Appendix II. Letter from the Government of Myanmar dated 21 January 2000.
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: International Labour Office
    Format/size: PDF (174 K)
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: ILO Governing Body, 276th Session, November 1999: GB.276/6
    Date of publication: November 1999
    Description/subject: Measures, including action under article 33 of the Constitution of the International Labour Organization, to secure compliance by the Government of Myanmar with the recommendations of the Commission of Inquiry established to examine the observance of the Forced Labour Convention, 1930 (No. 29). I. Information available on measures taken by the Government of Myanmar following the recommendations of the Commission of Inquiry, and action taken in this regard within the ILO since March 1999. II. Measures that may be considered by the Governing Body
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: International Labour Office
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: One Foot Out the Door? -- Report of the International Labour Organization's Committee on Application of Standards June 1999
    Date of publication: June 1999
    Description/subject: This June,in an extreme move by the International Labour Organization ILO, a resolution was passed that prohibits one of its member countries, Burma, from receiving technical cooperation and assistance from the ILO or attending its meetings, symposia or seminars... .
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: "Burma Debate", Vol. VI, No. 2
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: ILO Director-General's Report, May 1999
    Date of publication: 21 May 1999
    Description/subject: Report of the Director-General to the members of the Governing Body on Measures taken by the Government of Myanmar following the recommendations of the Commission of Inquiry established to examine its observance of the Forced Labour Convention, 1930 (No. 29)
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: International Labour Office
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: ILO Governing Body, 274th Session, March 1999: GB.274/5
    Date of publication: March 1999
    Description/subject: Measures taken by the Government of Myanmar to implement the recommendations of the Commission of Inquiry established to examine the complaint concerning its observance of the Forced Labour Convention, 1930 (No. 29)
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: International Labour Office
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Forced Labour in Myanmar (Burma)
    Date of publication: 02 July 1998
    Description/subject: "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)"...Full Text (about 400 pages) The central ILO report on forced labour in Burma. Appendix III contains 246 interviews, largely with people from non-Burman ethnic groups - Chin, Rohingya, Arakanese, Karen, Karenni, Shan, Pa-O, Mon. The interviews cover forced labour, but also many other violations of human rights such as killings (executions), rape, torture, looting, forced relocation (forced displacement) violence against women, violence against children, looting. ADDITIONAL KEYWORDS: forced resettlement, forced relocation, forced movement, forced displacement, forced migration, forced to move, displaced
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: International Labour Office
    Format/size: Main link (html by section); 2nd html link, complete text - for searching online (1800K); Word - for download (2010K)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.ibiblio.org/obl/docs/myanmar-OBL.htm
    http://www.ibiblio.org/obl/docs/myanmar-COI-OBL.doc
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: ILO Governing Body, 267th Session, November 1996: GB.267/16/2
    Date of publication: November 1996
    Description/subject: Complaint concerning the non-observance by Myanmar of the Forced Labour Convention, 1930 (No. 29), made by delegates to the 83rd (1996) Session of the Conference under article 26 of the Constitution of the ILO.
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: International Labour Office
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


  • Non-ILO Reports on Forced Recruitment in Burma

    Individual Documents

    Title: BGF Battalion #1014 forced labour and forced recruitment, April to May 2012
    Date of publication: 31 May 2013
    Description/subject: This report is based on information submitted by a community member in June 2012 describing events occurring in April and May 2012.[1] The information described the activities of BGF Battalion #1014, which operates along the border of Thaton and Papun districts. According to the community member, the group that is based out of Hpa-an Township, in Thaton District, has committed different abuses against the villagers who are in Hpa-an Township. Between April and May 2012, the Battalion forced local villagers from Meh K'Na Hkee village tract to clear plantation land for two companies, from whom the Battalion officers received money. In Kyon Mon Thweh village tract, villagers were required to serve as soldiers in a local militia.
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: html, pdf (41K)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2013/khrg13b29.html
    http://www.khrg.org/sites/default/files/khrg13b29.pdf
    Date of entry/update: 22 June 2013


    Title: Incident Report: Forced recruitment in Thaton District #2, May 2012
    Date of publication: 31 May 2013
    Description/subject: The following incident report was written by a community member who has been trained by KHRG to monitor human rights abuses. The community member who wrote this report described an incident that occurred on May 29th 2012 in Kyoh Moh Thweh village tract, Hpa-an Township, Thaton District, where a group of BGF Battalion #1014 soldiers forcibly recruited villagers for a people’s militia. This report also includes information about the consequent problems the villagers endured related to this forced recruitment, such as having to pay money in lieu, or fleeing the area in order to avoid recruitment. In response to previous forced recruitment efforts, the community member reported that several villagers fled the area in order to avoid the forced service. This report has been summarized along with three other Incident Reports received from this area in: “Border Guard #1014 forced labour and forced recruitment, April to May 2012,” KHRG, May 2013.
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: pdf (119K)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2013/khrg13b27.html, html
    Date of entry/update: 22 June 2013


    Title: Thaton Situation Update: Hpa-an Township, January to June 2012
    Date of publication: 31 May 2013
    Description/subject: This report includes a situation update submitted to KHRG in June 2012 by a community member describing events occurring in Thaton District, during the period between January to June 2012. Specifically, it describes villagers' education, their livelihood and explains how some of the villagers who have to go and work in other countries because of the lack of opportunities in their area. This report also presents detailed information about companies that have cooperated with KSDDP leaders (formerly DKBA) and BGF Battalion #1014 soldiers to confiscate land for rubber and teak plantations and, consequently, have forced the civilians to clear and plant tress in the plantation without providing wages. Also reported, is forced recruitment committed by one former DKBA leader, Moe Nyo. This report describes changes in the activity of the Tatmadaw and contains information on the villagers' concerns about Tatmadaw troop movement following the 2012 ceasefire.
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: html, pdf (54K)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/sites/default/files/khrg13b28.pdf
    Date of entry/update: 22 June 2013


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


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


    Title: Papun Interview: Saw T---, December 2011
    Date of publication: 16 July 2012
    Description/subject: "This report contains the full transcript of an interview conducted during December 2011 in Bu Tho Township, Papun District by a community member trained by KHRG to monitor human rights conditions. The community member interviewed a 40-year-old Buddhist monk, Saw T---, who is a former member of the Karen National Defence Organisation (KNDO), Democratic Karen Buddhist Army (DKBA) and the Border Guard, who described activities pertaining to Border Guard Battalion #1013 based at K'Hsaw Wah, Papun District. Saw T--- described human rights abuses including the forced conscription of child soldiers, or the forcing to hire someone in their place, costing 1,500,000 Kyat (US $1833.74). This report also describes the use of landmines by the Border Guard, and how villagers are forced to carry them while acting as porters. Also mentioned, is the on-going theft of villagers money and livestock by the Border Guard, as well as the forced labour of villagers in order to build army camps and the transportation of materials to the camps; the stealing of villagers' livestock after failing to provide villagers to serve as forced labour, is also mentioned. Saw T--- provides information on the day-to-day life of a soldier in the Border Guard, describing how villagers are forcibly conscripted into the ranks of the Border Guard, do not receive treatment when they are sick, are not allowed to visit their families, nor allowed to resign voluntarily. Saw T--- described how, on one occasion a deserter's elderly father was forced to fill his position until the soldier returned. Saw T--- also mentions the hierarchical payment structure, the use of drugs within the border guard and the training, which he underwent before joining the Border Guard. Concerns are also raised by Saw T--- to the community member who wrote this report, about his own safety and his fear of returning to his home in Papun, as he feels he will be killed, having become a deserter himself as of October 2nd 2011."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: pdf (331K), html
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b63.html
    Date of entry/update: 12 August 2012


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


    Title: Forced recruitment, forced labour: interviews with DKBA deserters and escaped porters
    Date of publication: 13 November 2009
    Description/subject: "...This news bulletin provides the transcripts of eight interviews conducted with six soldiers and two porters who recently fled after being conscripted by the DKBA. These interviews confirm widespread reports that the DKBA has been forcibly recruiting villagers as it attempts to increase troop strength as part of a transformation into a government Border Guard Force in advance of the 2010 elections. The interviews also offer further confirmation that the DKBA continues to use children as soldiers and porters in front-line conflict areas. Three of the victims interviewed by KHRG are teenage boys; the youngest was just 13 when he was forced to join the DKBA..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Field Report (KHRG #2009-B11)
    Format/size: pdf (629 KB)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2009/khrg09b11.html
    Date of entry/update: 29 November 2009


  • Non-ILO Reports on forced labour, including forced portering, in Burma

    Websites/Multiple Documents

    Title: EarthRights International Burma publications
    Description/subject: General publications page, with several on Burma
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: EarthRights International
    Format/size: html, pdf, Word
    Date of entry/update: 11 August 2003


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


    Individual Documents

    Title: Countries at risk - violations of trade union rights - extracts on Burma/Myanmar
    Date of publication: 2013
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: International Trade Union Confederation
    Format/size: pdf (109K)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.ituc-csi.org/IMG/pdf/survey_ra_2013_eng_final.pdf
    Date of entry/update: 01 July 2013


    Title: Briefing: Forced labour in Chin State and Sagaing Region, 2011 – 2012
    Date of publication: 27 August 2012
    Description/subject: "...From January 2011 to date, CHRO has documented 20 separate incidents of forced labour, some involving orders to multiple villages. 50 percent of the incidents involved orders from the Burma Army (typically portering), and the other half were orders from the local authorities (typically road construction, planting jatropha, and other forms of manual labour). In May 2011, the International Labour Organization (ILO) held an official awareness-raising workshop in Hakha, the capital of Chin State, involving more than 160 officials, including administrators, judges, police and Burma Army personnel. This was the first official workshop of its kind held in Chin State and an important step towards tackling the issue of forced labour in the area. At the time of writing CHRO has documented 12 separate incidents of forced labour since the workshop took place, 50 percent portering exacted by Burma Army soldiers and the other half by civilian authorities, including the Chief Minister of Chin State..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Chin Human Rights Organization
    Format/size: pdf (162K)
    Date of entry/update: 03 September 2012


    Title: Nyaunglebin Situation Update: September to October 2011 [News Bulletin]
    Date of publication: 17 January 2012
    Description/subject: "This report includes a situation update submitted to KHRG in November 2011 by a villager describing events occurring in Nyaunglebin District, during the period between September and October 2011. It details an incident that occurred in October 2011, in which a villager was shot and injured while working in his betelnut field; the villager who wrote this report noted that some villagers living in these areas respond to the threat of violence by fleeing approaching Tatmadaw patrols. Following the shooting, Tatmadaw troops imposed movement restrictions that prevented villagers from traveling to or staying in their agricultural workplaces in the area where the shooting occurred. This report includes additional information about the use of villagers to provide forced labour at Tatmadaw camps, specifically to perform sentry duty along roads, and also raises villagers' concerns about food security after unseasonable rain prevented villagers in some areas from burning brush on their hill fields preparatory to planting and paddy crops in other areas were destroyed by insects and by flooding during the monsoon."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: html, pdf (215K)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b4.html
    Date of entry/update: 18 January 2012


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


    Title: From Prison to Front Line: Analysis of convict porter testimony 2009 – 2011
    Date of publication: 13 July 2011
    Description/subject: "...Over the last two decades, KHRG has documented the abuse of convicts taken by the thousands from prisons across Burma and forced to serve as porters for frontline units of Burma’s state army, the Tatmadaw. In the last two years alone, Tatmadaw units have used at least 1,700 convict porters during two distinct, ongoing combat operations in Karen State and eastern Bago Division; this report presents full transcripts and analysis of interviews with 59 who escaped. In interviews with KHRG, every convict porter described being forced to carry unmanageable loads over hazardous terrain with minimal rest, food and water. Most told of being used deliberately as human shields during combat; forced to walk before troops in landmine-contaminated areas; and being refused medical attention when wounded or ill. Many saw porters executed when they were unable to continue marching or when desperation drove them to attempt escape. Abuses consistently described by porters violate Burma's domestic and international legal obligations. If such abusive practices are to be halted, existing legal provisions must be enforced by measures that ensure accountability for the individuals that violate them. This report is intended to augment "Dead Men Walking: Convict Porters on the Front Lines in Eastern Burma", a joint report released by KHRG and Human Rights Watch in July 2011..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: pdf (3.2MB - OBL version; 5.43MB - original)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2011/khrg1102.pdf
    Date of entry/update: 15 July 2011


    Title: Dead Men Walking: Convict Porters on the Front Lines in Eastern Burma
    Date of publication: 12 July 2011
    Description/subject: "...For decades the Burmese army has forced civilians to risk life and limb serving as porters in barbaric conditions during military operations against rebel armed groups. Among those taken to do this often deadly work, for indefinite periods and without compensation, are common criminals serving time in Burma’s prisons and labor camps. Escaped convict porters described to us how the authorities selected them in a seemingly random fashion from prison and transferred them to army units fighting on the front lines. They are forced to carry huge loads of supplies and munitions in mountainous terrain, and given inadequate food and no medical care. Often they are used as “human shields,” put in front of columns of troops facing ambush or sent first down mined roads or trails, the latter practice known as "atrocity demining.” The wounded are left to die; those who try to escape are frequently executed. Burma’s military government promised that the November 2010 elections, the country’s first elections in more than 20 years, would bring about human rights improvements. But soon after election day the Burmese army, the Tatmadaw, launched military operations that have been accompanied by a new round of abuses. In January 2011, the Tatmadaw, in collusion with the Corrections Department and the Burmese police, gathered an estimated 700 prisoners from approximately 12 prisons and labor camps throughout Burma to serve as porters for an ongoing offensive in southern Karen State, in the east of the country. The same month, another 500 prisoners were taken for use as porters during another separate military operation in northern Karen State and eastern Pegu Region, augmenting 500 porters used in the same area in an earlier stage of the operation in the preceding year. The men were a mix of serious and petty offenders, but their crimes or willingness to serve were not taken into consideration: only their ability to carry heavy loads of ammunition, food, and supplies for more than 17 Tatmadaw battalions engaged in operations against ethnic Karen armed groups. Karen civilians living in the combat zone, who would normally be forced to porter for the military under similarly horrendous conditions, had already fled by the thousands to the Thai border. The prisoners selected as porters described witnessing or enduring summary executions, torture and beatings, being used as “human shields” to trip landmines or shield soldiers from fire, and being denied medical attention and adequate food and shelter. One convict porter, Ko Kyaw Htun (all prisoner names used in this report are pseudonyms), told how Burmese soldiers forced him to walk ahead when they suspected landmines were on the trails: “They followed behind us. In their minds, if the mine explodes, the mine will hit us first.” Another porter, Tun Mok, described how soldiers recaptured him after trying to escape, and how they kicked and punched him, and then rolled a thick bamboo pole painfully up and down his shins. This report, based on Human Rights Watch and Karen Human Rights Group interviews with 58 convict porters who escaped to Thailand between 2010 and 2011, details the abuses. The porters we spoke with ranged in age from 20 to 57 years, and included serious offenders such as murderers and drug dealers, as well as individuals convicted of brawling and fraud— even illegal lottery sellers. Their sentences ranged from just one year to more than 20 years’ imprisonment, and they were taken from different facilities, including labor camps, maximum security prisons, such as Insein prison in Rangoon, and local prisons for less serious offenders. The accounts shared by porters about the abuses they experienced in 2011 are horrific, but sadly not unusual. The use of convict porters is not an isolated, local, or rogue practice employed by some units or commanders, but has been credibly documented since as early as 1992. This report focuses on recent use of convict porters in Karen State, but the use of convict porters has also been reported in the past in Mon, Karenni, and Shan States. The International Labour Organization (ILO) has raised the issue of convict porters with the Burmese government since 1998, yet the problem persists, particularly during major offensive military operations. Burma’s forcible recruitment and mistreatment of convicts as uncompensated porters in conflict areas are grave violations of international humanitarian law and human rights law. Abuses include murder, torture, and the use of porters as human shields. Those responsible for ordering or participating in such mistreatment should be prosecuted for war crimes. Authorities in Burma have previously admitted the practice occurs, but have claimed that prisoners are not exposed to hostilities. The information gathered for this report, consistent with the evidence gathered over the past two decades, demonstrates that this simply is not true. The practice is ongoing, systematic, and is facilitated by several branches of government, suggesting decision-making at the highest levels of the Burmese military and political establishment. Officials and commanders who knew or should have known of such abuses but took no measures to stop it or punish those responsible should be held accountable as a matter of command responsibility. The use of convict porters on the front line is only one facet of the brutal counterinsurgency practices Burmese officials have used against ethnic minority populations since independence in 1948. These include deliberate attacks on civilian villages and towns, large-scale forced relocation, torture, extrajudicial executions, rape and other sexual violence against women and girls, and the use of child soldiers. Rebel armed groups have also been involved in abuses such as indiscriminate use of landmines, using civilians as forced labor, and recruitment of child soldiers. These abuses have led to growing calls for the establishment of a United Nations commission of inquiry into longstanding allegations of violations of international humanitarian and human rights law in Burma. As the experiences contained in this report make clear, serious abuses that amount to war crimes are being committed with the involvement or knowledge of high-level civilian and military officials. Officers and soldiers commit atrocities with impunity. Credible and impartial investigations are needed into serious abuses committed by all parties to Burma’s internal armed conflicts. The international community’s failure to exert more effective pressure on the Burmese military to end the use of convict porters on the battlefield will condemn more men to take their place..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Human Rights Watch (HRW), Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: pdf (1.6MB)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.hrw.org/sites/default/files/reports/burma0711_OnlineVersion.pdf
    Date of entry/update: 15 July 2011


    Title: Burma Human Rights Yearbook 2008 - Chapter 7: Forced Labour and Forced Conscription
    Date of publication: 23 November 2009
    Description/subject: "...the use of forced labour remains widespread and pervasive throughout the country. The routine disruption of work and life has brought many communities to the brink of humanitarian crisis, with villagers in rural areas struggling to find the time to grow food or earn a wage in between fulfilling the various demands of the junta and its allied ceasefire groups...Reports of forced labour were received from sources across the country during the year 2007 and again in 2008, with particularly high rates of incidence reported in Arakan State, Karen State and Shan State. In some states, military demands for labour, food or money were often expressed in written order documents, although some officers have become aware of the importance of these documents as evidence of human rights abuse and have begun circumventing the problem by issuing their orders verbally at meetings. In August 2008 the Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG) published a collection of 59 translated order documents issued by State Peace and Development Council (SPDC) and Democratic Karen Buddhist Army (DKBA) authorities in Toungoo, Nyaunglebin, Papun and Thaton Districts between October 2007 and March 2008. Some of the orders covered general issues and specified travel permission or restrictions on the sale of meat, but many included demands for food, materials, services and various kinds of labour or attendance at meetings..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Human Rights Docmentation Unit (HRDU)
    Format/size: pdf (974K)
    Date of entry/update: 05 December 2009


    Title: SPDC and DKBA order documents: October 2007 to March 2008
    Date of publication: 06 August 2008
    Description/subject: "As evidence of ongoing exploitative local governance in rural Burma, this report comprises a collection of 59 translated order documents issued by SPDC and DKBA officers to village heads in Karen State between October 2007 and March 2008. The orders provide tangible confirmation of rural villagers’ consistent testimonies regarding the regular demands for labour, money, food and other supplies to which their communities are subject by local military forces. Amongst other things, these order documents articulate demands for the payment of money and food; fabrication and delivery of building supplies; attendance at meetings; road clearance and construction; portering of military supplies; agricultural labour and the delivery of bullock carts. In almost all cases, such demands are uncompensated and backed by an implicit threat of violence for non-compliance. Almost all demands articulated in the orders presented in this report involve some element of forced labour in their implementation..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Orders Reports (KHRG #2008-02)
    Format/size: pdf (353 KB)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2008/khrg0802.html
    Date of entry/update: 15 November 2009


    Title: Kein Ende der Zwangsarbeit in Burma
    Date of publication: 07 September 2007
    Description/subject: Trotz des seit Ende Februar 2007 offiziellen Verbots von Zwangsarbeit in Burma (Myanmar), gibt es unaufhörlich Berichte über neue Fälle – ganz besonders in den Grenzgebieten, zu denen Ausländer keinen Zugang haben und wo Minderheiten wie die Karen verfolgt werden. Burmesische Gewerkschafter legten Anfang Juni einen Bericht vor, in dem 3.400 Vorwürfe der Zwangsarbeit dokumentiert sind. Ein von der ILO (Internationale Arbeitsorganisation) im März eingerichtetes Beschwerdeorgan für Zwangsarbeit in Burma registrierte von März bis Juni nur 23 Fälle. Forced labour in ethnic minority areas
    Language: German, Deutsch
    Source/publisher: Gesellschaft für bedrohte Völker
    Date of entry/update: 03 May 2008


    Title: The Compounding Consequences of DKBA Oppression: Abuse, poverty and food insecurity in Thaton District
    Date of publication: 09 July 2007
    Description/subject: "As the principal means of establishing control over the people of Thaton District, the SPDC has supported a more aggressive DKBA role in the area. With the junta's political, military and financial backing the DKBA has sought to expand its numbers, strengthen its position vis-à-vis the civilian population and eradicate the remaining KNU/KNLA presence in the region. To those ends, the DKBA has used forced labour, looting, extortion, land confiscation and movement restrictions and embarked on a hostile campaign of forced recruitment from amongst the local population. These abuses have eroded village livelihoods, leading to low harvest yields and wholly failed crops; problems which compound over time and progressively deepen poverty and malnourishment. With the onset of the rainy season and the 2007 cultivation period, villagers in Thaton District are faced with depleting provisions. This food insecurity will require that many harvest their 2007 crop as early as October while still unripe. The low yield of an early harvest, lost time spent on forced labour and the harmful fallout of further extortion and other abuses will all combine to ensure once again that villagers in Thaton District confront food shortages and increasing poverty..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Field Report (KHRG #2007-F5)
    Format/size: pdf (527 KB)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2007/khrg07f5.html
    Date of entry/update: 08 November 2009


    Title: Burma Human Rights Yearbook 2006: Forced Labour and Forced Conscription
    Date of publication: 25 June 2007
    Description/subject: 1.1 Introduction: Forced Portering; Forced Labour; Forced Convict Labour; Forced Military Conscription...1.2 ILO Activities in Burma: Construction of the New Capital [box]... 1.3 Forced Labour Resulting from International Joint Ventures: The Settlement of the Total Lawsuit; Potential Use of Forced Labour on Internationally Sponsored Projects; Salween Dams; Shwe Gas Development; Road and Rail Projects...1.4 Forced Portering – Partial List of Incidents for 2006: Arakan State - Buthidaung Township; Chin State - Matupi Township; Karen State - Dooplaya District, Mergui/Tavoy District, Nyaunglebin District, Thaton District, Toungoo District; Mon State - Ye Township; Shan State - Kae-See Township, Murng Kerng Township, Murng-Nai Township, Namkhan Township, Nam-Zarng Township...1.5 Forced Labour – Partial List of Incidents for 2006: Arakan State - Buthidaung Township, Kyaukpru Township, Maungdaw Township, Palawa Township, Ponna Kyunt Township, Rathidaung Township; Chin State - Falam Township, Hakha Township, Matupi Township, Paletwa Township, Tedim Township, Thantlang Township; Kachin State - Hopin Township, Sinbo Township; Karen State - Dooplaya District, Nyaunglebin District, Pa’an District, Papun District, Thaton District, Toungoo District; Karenni State; Mon State - Khaw Zar Sub-Township, Mudon Township, Thanbyuzayat Township, Ye Township; Pegu Division; Sagaing Division; Shan State - Kae-See Township, Kun Hing Township, Lai-Kha Township, Lashio Township, Muse Town, Murng-Ton Township, Tachilek Township; Tenasserim Division…1.6 Forced Prison Labour – Partial List of Incidents for 2006: Arakan State; Chin State; Karen State - Papun District, Thaton District, Toungoo District; Mandalay Division…1.7 Forced Conscription and Forced Military Training – Partial List of Incidents for 2006: Arakan State - Manaung Township, Maungdaw Township, Ponna Kyunt Township, Yathetaung Township; Chin State - Paletwa Township, Matupi Township; Kachin State; Karen State - Nyaunglebin District, Pa’an District; Mon State; Tenasserim Division…1.8 Interviews and Personal Accounts [20 interviews].
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Human Rights Documentation Unit of the NCGUB
    Format/size: pdf (626K)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.ibiblio.org/obl/docs4/HRDU2006-CD/
    Date of entry/update: 13 July 2007


    Title: Forced Labour, Extortion, and Festivities: The SPDC and DKBA burden on villagers in Pa'an District
    Date of publication: 22 December 2006
    Description/subject: "In Pa'an District of central Karen State, Burmese authorities impose strict controls on the movements and activities of all villagers while also taking their land, money and livestock, using them as forced labour, and forcing them to join state paramilitary organisations. Muslims are being forcibly evicted from their villages into relocation camps to make way for new SPDC army camps. Simultaneously the Democratic Karen Buddhist Army (DKBA) acts on behalf of the SPDC in many areas, extending the regime's control in return for impunity to exploit and extort from the civilian population. The double burden of forced labour, extortion, restrictions and forced conscription imposed by two sets of authorities takes a heavy toll on the villagers, yet in a cruel irony they are also being forced to give money and unpaid child labour to prepare New Year festivities where the DKBA plays host to foreigners and Rangoon movie stars..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Field Report (KHRG #2006-F12)
    Format/size: pdf (972 KB)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2006/khrg06f12.html
    Date of entry/update: 08 November 2009


    Title: Less than Human: Convict Porters in the 2005 - 2006 Northern Karen State Offensive
    Date of publication: 22 August 2006
    Description/subject: "To support its military attacks on hill villages throughout northern Karen State since November 2005, Burma’s State Peace & Development Council (SPDC) military junta has brought several thousand convicts from prisons across Burma to carry ammunition and supplies and to act as human minesweepers. Many of these men are innocent of any crime, but were imprisoned because they were too poor to bribe police and judges who use their positions to extort money. The corruption continues with their jailers, who send them to the Army as porters if they are unable to pay. The SPDC relies increasingly on convict porters for its major military operations, both as a large-scale and accessible workforce to augment the forced labour of villagers and to legitimise its use of forced labour in the eyes of the international community. However, the use of convict porters in frontline operations is anything but legitimate: treated as property of the soldiers, worked to the point of exhaustion or death, beaten, tortured or murdered whenever they can no longer carry loads, underfed and given no treatment when sick or wounded, their treatment flagrantly violates Burma’s obligations under the Geneva Conventions and the ILO Forced Labour Convention. Right now SPDC troops in northern Karen State are leaving a trail of porters’ bodies behind them, while hundreds are attempting escape. This report is based on KHRG’s interviews with some of those who have escaped, whose stories reveal a system of endemic corruption and horrific brutality. Yet despite the presence of thousands of convict porters SPDC forces continue to recruit villagers for forced labour whenever possible, indicating that Burma’s ever-expanding Army is using convict labour as a supplement rather than an alternative to the forced labour of villagers..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG #2006-03)
    Format/size: pdf (1.2MB), hrml
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2006/khrg0603.html
    Date of entry/update: 06 October 2006


    Title: Burma Human Rights Yearbook 2005: Forced Labor, Portering, and Military Conscription
    Date of publication: July 2006
    Description/subject: 1.1 Background; 1.2 ILO Activities in Burma; 1.3 Forced Labor Resulting from International Joint Ventures; 1.4 Forced Portering - Partial List of Incidents for 2005; 1.5 Forced Labor - Partial List of Incidents for 2005; 1.6 Forced Prison Labor - Partial List of Incidents for 2005; 1.7 Forced Conscription and Forced Military Training - Partial List of Incidents for 2005; 1.8 Interviews and Personal Accounts.
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Human Rights Documentation Unit of the NCGUB
    Format/size: html
    Alternate URLs: http://www.burmalibrary.org/admin/admin.php?catid=281&edit=11603 (full text)
    Date of entry/update: 01 December 2010


    Title: Doing Business with Burma - report
    Date of publication: 25 January 2005
    Description/subject: What are the consequences of investment in or trade with Burma? How does it work? Who profits? Who suffers from it?... Contents: 1. Introduction; 2. Who owns the economy? (When you do business with Burma, who do you need to deal with? Can a company have independent business links in Burma?) 3. Levels of FDI and trade; 4. How much of this money is going to the junta? Another source of income: all kinds of taxes; A possible third source of income: the exchange of foreign currency; 5. What do the generals do with this money? 6. On corruption, transparency and drugs; 7. Is there a link between FDI and politics? 8. Are there direct links between FDI and abuse of workers? 9. What is the effect of sanctions on ordinary citizens?
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: International Confederation of Free Trade Unions (ICFTU)
    Format/size: html, pdf (262K)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.ibiblio.org/obl/docs3/Doing_Business_in_or_with_Burma.pdf
    Date of entry/update: 07 February 2005


    Title: Look at the System to Understand Forced Labour in Burma
    Date of publication: 09 April 2004
    Description/subject: In a recent statement, Burma's ruling military council rejected the conclusions of a report on forced labor in Burma released by the New York-based rights group, Human Rights Watch. The statement attacked the report's "negative attitude, irresponsible actions and unrealistic expectations," but gave no indication of what it would consider to constitute a more "realistic" assessment of the prospects for change. Moreover, by referring to "unrealistic expectations", the junta's spokesman seemed to be conceding that forced labor still exists to some extent inside Burma. Indeed, although the military government has officially banned forced labor, it has evidently allowed some room for officials to continue with this practice in rural and remote areas. So while the junta accuses Human Rights Watch of not being "aware of the developments taking place and the cooperation the government of Myanmar has extended to the ILO (International Labor Organization)," it appears that the ruling State Peace and Development Council (SPDC) is itself unaware that it is trapped in a system of its own creation-namely, the existing authoritarian political system, which is underpinned by military rule. For nearly forty years now, Burma has been in the grips of a system that has been incapable of a realistic assessment of its own role in perpetuating the country's many problems.
    Author/creator: By Tin-Maung Than
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: "The Irrawaddy" (Commentary)
    Format/size: html (If this URL does not get you to quite the right place, scroll down to the article, or use your browser's Find function.)
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Burma Human Rights Yearbook 2002-03: Forced Labour
    Date of publication: October 2003
    Description/subject: "In 2002, the SPDC continued using forced labor in Burma; particularly forced portering for military operations; forced labor for military bases and income generating projects for the military and building and maintenance of roads. Despite the release of Aung San Suu Kyi in May, little changed for Burma’s ethnic minority groups, particularly the Karen, Karenni and Shan, living in rural areas where forced labor is regularly conscripted for portering, infrastructure projects and military support activities. The use of forced labor in these areas is often perpetrated under the guise of "Government Development Programs." Although the issue of forced labor in Burma has received much recent attention internationally, there has been little corresponding action by SPDC to eradicate it despite an order banning the use of forced labor which was promulgated in 2000 (see below). Two trends that continued in 2002 were the use of prison labor for portering during military operations and the collection of porter fees. Porter fees take on two forms; in one, each household in a village is required to pay a certain amount each month in order to compensate the conscripted porters. In the other, villagers are forced to pay a fee so that they are not conscripted as porters. Porter fees are a burden on villagers that should not be underestimated as its affects their livelihood in almost the same way that portering does. Villagers who cannot afford to take time away from their livelihood to porter also cannot afford to pay money to avoid portering. Both the increase in the use of prisoner portering and porter fees can be attributed to SPDC’s desire to improve its image in the international community. The use of prisoner porters lessens the number of civilian porters that need to be conscripted and when porters are paid with funds forcibly collected from villagers, the Burmese military can claim that the porters are paid laborers..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Human Rights Documentation Unit, NCGUB
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 10 November 2003


    Title: SPDC & DKBA ORDERS TO VILLAGES: SET 2003-A
    Date of publication: 22 August 2003
    Description/subject: "This report presents the direct translations of 783 order documents and letters, selected from a total of 1,007 such documents. The orders dictate demands for forced labour, money, food and materials, place restrictions on movements and activities of villagers, and make threats to arrest village elders or destroy villages of those who fail to obey. Over 650 of those selected were sent by military units and local authorities of Burma’s ruling State Peace and Development Council (SPDC) junta to village elders in Toungoo, Papun, Nyaunglebin, Thaton, Pa’an and Dooplaya Districts, which together cover most of Karen State and part of eastern Pegu Division and Mon State (see Map 1 showing Burma or Map 2 showing Karen State). The remainder were sent by the Democratic Karen Buddhist Army (DKBA) or the Karen Peace Army (KPA), groups allied with the SPDC. All but a few of the orders were issued between January 2002 and February 2003..." Papun, Pa’an, Thaton, Nyaunglebin, Toungoo, & Dooplaya Districts General Forced Labour (Orders #1-150); Forced Labour Supplying Materials (#150-191); Set to a Village I: Village A, Papun District (#192-200); Set to a Village II: Village B, Papun District (#201-226); Set to a Village III: Village C, Thaton District (#227-241); Set to a Village IV: Village D, Dooplaya District (#242-251); Extortion of Money, Food, and Materials (#252-335); Crop Quotas (#336-346); Restrictions on Movement and Activity (#347-354); Demands for Intelligence (#355-426); Education, Health (#427-442); Education (#427-439); Health (#440-442); Summons to ‘Meetings’ (#443-652); DKBA & KPA Letters (#653-783); DKBA Recruitment (#653); DKBA General Forced Labour (#654-685); DKBA Demands for Materials and Money (#686-719); DKBA Restrictions (#720-727); DKBA Meetings (#728-771); KPA Letters (#772-783); Appendix A: The Village Act and the Towns Act; Appendix B: SPDC Orders ‘Banning’ Forced Labour.
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group ( KHRG #2003-01)
    Format/size: html, pdf (5.4MB) 405 pages
    Date of entry/update: 17 November 2003


    Title: Entrenched: an Investigative Report on the Systematic Use of Forced Labor in a Rural Area [of Burma]
    Date of publication: 13 June 2003
    Description/subject: "In a recent investigation inside Burma, EarthRights International has detailed just how the systematic practice of forced labor operates and continues in the country. Using rare interviews with local village heads, the report, entitled Entrenched, provides an in-depth look into one small rural area, including the involvement of high-ranking military officers in the practice of forced labor. The rare testimonies illustrate how forced labor—a modern form of slavery—remains prevalent in an area of active military conflict in eastern Burma. Entrenched: an Investigative Report on the Systematic Use of Forced Labor in a Rural Area is based on extensive interviews with ten village heads from one small area that took place during the winter of 2002-2003. Recent interviews from the same area confirm the practice continues into May 2003. (See the Supplemental Report that also includes updates on the Yadana and Yetagun pipeline region, prisoner porter interviews, and other forms of forced labor). By providing an in-depth examination, the report documents the highly systematic and violent nature of labor abuse by the Burmese military..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: EarthRights International
    Format/size: pdf (334K),
    Alternate URLs: http://www.earthrights.org/publication/entrenched
    Date of entry/update: 01 November 2010


    Title: Supplemental Report on forced labour in Burma (to be read with "Entrenched")
    Date of publication: 04 June 2003
    Description/subject: "The following nineteen recent interviews with villagers from eastern Burma confirm the continued use of forced labor in their communities during 2003. The interviews show the use of forced labor and portering coordinated by high-ranking military officers in some areas of Burma; some orders originate from battalion commanders and a local strategic commander. The interviews also illustrate that it is ultimately the military that issues these orders for forced labor even if they often use village heads as intermediaries in giving and enforcing the orders. These interviews are redacted and abridged to ensure the security of those interviewed and their families. EarthRights International keeps the interviews in their entirety on file...[This] Supplemental Report...also includes updates on the Yadana and Yetagun pipeline region, prisoner porter interviews, and other forms of forced labor. By providing an in-depth examination, the report documents the highly systematic and violent nature of labor abuse by the Burmese military..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: EarthRights International
    Format/size: pdf (251K)
    Date of entry/update: 16 June 2003


    Title: Reise mit AUA - LAUDA AIR und TAI PAN zu den Schaupltzen der Zwangsarbeit
    Date of publication: 09 March 2003
    Description/subject: "A trip to the sights of forced labour". Tourism and forced labour, forced relocation. Dieses "besondere Reiseerlebnis" ist in seinem Ablauf dem Katalog des Reisebros Tai Pan (www.taipan.at) in Wien entnommen. Tai Pan ist der wichtigste Kooperationspartner von AUA - Lauda Air beim Verkauf von organisierten Burma-Reisen. Mit Ausnahme der AUA - Lauda Air fliegt derzeit keine einzige europische Fluggesellschaft von Europa nach Burma. Diese bedient seit 5. Nov. 2002 die Strecke Wien - Rangoon/Yangon und bereits etwas lnger Italien (Milano) - Yangon.
    Author/creator: Burma Campaign Austria
    Language: Deutsch, German
    Source/publisher: Indymedia Germany
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Forced Labor on the Shwe Gin River in Burma
    Date of publication: 13 September 2002
    Description/subject: "EarthRights International (ERI) has collected credible reports regarding the use of forced labor to construct a new hydroelectric dam on the Shwe Gin River, near Kyaut Nagar in Eastern Burma. This predominantly Karen area, north of Shwe Gin Township, is home to thousands of "internally displaced people? who have been repeatedly forced out of their homes by the military junta's activities. The dam project, which will eventually dislocate them once again, is currently pushing the local people further into poverty by stealing their labor. Villagers interviewed by an ERI fact-finding team said that in May 2002, soldiers routinely force them to work on the construction project. According to one local man, ?We can only come back after we finished the work in the camp. In the camp, they don?t have water and food for the workers. The military orders the villagers to do what they want. The soldiers don?t have any sympathy for the workers.? Official information regarding the project, which is located on the edge of the armed conflict, is extremely difficult to obtain. The project is overseen by the state-owned Myanmar Electrical Power Enterprise (MEPE). In early 2001, a survey was conducted by four Japanese technicians working for an undisclosed company. Construction began shortly after and is to be completed in 2005. No social or environmental impact assessment was carried out prior to beginning construction. Reconnaissance of the area also reveals the construction of roads, military barracks, a helicopter pad, as well as surveillance posts on the western side of the river. The area surrounding the dam site is now heavily militarized."
    Author/creator: Ken MacLean and Mahn Nay Myo
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: EarthRights International
    Format/size: pdf (178K)
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Burma Human Rights Yearbook 2001-2002: Forced labour,
    Date of publication: September 2002
    Description/subject: "...The SPDC in 2001 continues using forced labor in Burma; particularly forced portering for military operations; forced labor for military bases and income generating projects for the military and building and maintenance of roads. Despite ongoing talks between Aung San Suu Kyi and SPDC, little has changed for Burmas ethnic minority groups, particularly the Karen, Karenni and Shan, living in rural areas where forced labor is regularly conscripted for portering, infrastructure projects and military support activities. Although the issue of forced labor in Burma has received much recent attention internationally, there has been little corresponding action by SPDC to eradicate its use..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Human Rights Documentation Unit of the NCGUB
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: WE ARE NOT FREE TO WORK FOR OURSELVES: Forced Labor and Other Human Rights Abuses in Burma
    Date of publication: June 2002
    Description/subject: "Burma’s State Peace and Development Council’s Order No. 1/99 (March 1999), along with the Supplementary Order to Order No. 1/99 (October 2000),1 outlawed forced labor throughout the country. Despite these orders, forced labor continues. The villagers of Shan State, Karenni State, Karen State, Pegu Division, Mandalay Division, and Tenasserim Division tell of their experiences in the 77 accounts that follow. Life under military rule still means a life where the rule of law is absent. Without legal recourse and continued international pressure for change, these people have no choice but to flee..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: EarthRights International (ERI)
    Format/size: pdf (1.1MB)
    Date of entry/update: 15 March 2007


    Title: Supplement to "More of the Same: Forced Labor Continues in Burma (October 2000 - September 2001)"
    Date of publication: 07 February 2002
    Description/subject: "...This report demonstrates that civilians continue to be conscripted for forced labor by military units providing security to two natural gas pipelines in southern Burma, the Yadana and Yetagun pipelines. The multinational oil companies that operate these pipelines, including TotalFinaElf (formerly Total) of France, Premier Oil of the United Kingdom, and Unocal of the United States, continue to be morally complicit and legally responsible for the forced labor occurring in the pipeline region..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: EarthRights International
    Format/size: html, pdf (46K)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.earthrights.org/index2.php?option=com_content&do_pdf=1&id=18
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Burma - Forced Labour: ICFTU submission to ILO Committee of Experts November 2001
    Date of publication: 29 November 2001
    Description/subject: " The ICFTU sincerely hoped that, as a combined result of the Resolution on Burma adopted by the 88th Session of the International Labour Conference (Geneva, June 2000) and of the ILO's success in restoring a climate of dialogue with the authorities, the use of forced labour would significantly decrease in intensity and, in time, even be eradicated. In fact, nothing of the sort has happened and, as a result, the ICFTU is compelled to continue to supply up-to-date evidence thereof to the Committee of Experts. It does so with regret, and with increasing frustration at the authorities' lack of sincerity and commitment to eliminating forced labour. In spite of their denials, alleged efforts to suppress the practice, professed good will and spirit of co-operation with the ILO, the military authorities of Burma have continued to resort to forced labour on a massive scale. Senior, middle and low-ranking army officers and rank-and-file soldiers, as well as civilian authorities, have continued to exact forced labour in all areas of activity previously identified by the ILO. In support of its claims, the ICFTU encloses nearly 30 reports and other documents, totalling over one hundred pages. They provide detailed evidence, from the same sources and of the same quality as the hundreds of reports examined over the last 5 years by the ILO and found to be credible and authentic..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: ICFTU
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: More of the Same: Forced Labor Continues in Burma (October 2000 - (October 2000 - September 2001)
    Date of publication: 15 October 2001
    Description/subject: "Even though they have a sign in our village [Ye Pyu Township] that there will be no forced labor or portering in our village, we still have to do forced labor. ...[The army officials] told us that if people ask you about it, don't tell them that we are forcing you to do it, but that we are just asking you to help do it." (Page 25) "This report was published on the heels of the International Labour Organization’s visit to Burma to investigate the continuing forced labor and the military regimes compliance with its calls to end the practice. The report documents the widespread continuance of forced labor and the regime’s attempts to hide the practice from the ILO’s view. For the report, EarthRights International staff interviewed many Karen, Tavoyan and Shan victims in Shan State and Tenasserim Division over the past year..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: EarthRights International
    Format/size: PDF (359K)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.earthrights.org/publication/more-same-forced-labor-continues-burma-october-2000-septembe...
    Date of entry/update: 01 November 2010


    Title: More of the Same: Forced Labor Continues in Burma (October 2000 - September 2001) - Japanese version
    Date of publication: 15 October 2001
    Description/subject: "Even though they have a sign in our village [Ye Pyu Township] that there will be no forced labor or portering in our village, we still have to do forced labor. ...[The army officials] told us that if people ask you about it, don't tell them that we are forcing you to do it, but that we are just asking you to help do it." (Page 25) "This report was published on the heels of the International Labour Organization’s visit to Burma to investigate the continuing forced labor and the military regimes compliance with its calls to end the practice. The report documents the widespread continuance of forced labor and the regime’s attempts to hide the practice from the ILO’s view. For the report, EarthRights International staff interviewed many Karen, Tavoyan and Shan victims in Shan State and Tenasserim Division over the past year..."
    Language: Japanese
    Source/publisher: EarthRights International
    Format/size: PDF (453K)
    Date of entry/update: 01 December 2010


    Title: Burma Human Rights Yearbook 2000: Forced Portering and Labor
    Date of publication: October 2001
    Description/subject: "Throughout the year 2000, the military junta continued its blatant use of unpaid civilian forced labor in virtually all their undertakings, including economic activities, military operations, building and maintaining infrastructures such as roads, bridges and military facilities, cultivating crops for the military, and, in many cases, even in their daily personal matters. Carts, mini-tractors, trucks, cars and other vehicles of the people were frequently forced to serve the military without compensation or responsibility for any damage done to the vehicles. Civilians in rural and ethnic areas in Burma were called for wontan (servants), which usually means porters or military camp labor, or loh ah pay (translated here as voluntary labor); SPDCs term for forced labor..."
    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: A Report to the International Labour Organization on Forced Labor in Burma From December 2000-April 2001
    Date of publication: 04 June 2001
    Description/subject: Far from indicating a shift away from utilizing forced labor, much less a cessation of this practice, ERI's interviews demonstrate that the authorities' use of forced labor continues through the present. The following statements are all drawn from these interviews: "Just three days before I came to Thailand, I had to fence their [the military's] camp" (Interview #11); "We had to go to fence the military base once a month" (Interview #32); "Every month we have to go and work for the soldiers more than ten days, and sometimes it was almost the whole month" (Interview #2); "Every five days, two villagers in our village tract had to go by rotation [to accompany soldiers]" (Interview #38). Several interviews suggest, however, that the authorities are attempting to alter in name what they refuse to reform in practice: "Starting in November 2000... the District Peace Development Council has ordered the villagers to call porters 'helpers' and if people still call 'helpers' porters, they will punish them" (Interview #6); "According to the villagers, there is no 'porter[ing]' now, but [the military] calls it by another name. This time they ask for 'A-Ku-A-Nyi,' which means 'helper.' That means a villager has to go with them for give days as a guide, and they ask for it all the time" (Interview #28). The enclosed interviews were conducted by ERI or by people from Burma who received prior training from ERI on how to conduct interviews. Due to security concerns and our own confidentiality policies, identifying information in the interviews has been redacted. We have given the township names to provide the location of incidences of forced labor and other human rights abuses. We have excluded people's names, but if this information is needed please contact us. In sum, it is clear that use of forced labor, including portering, has not stopped in areas where we have been able to collect information. ERI will continue to monitor the situation and send information as it is received.
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: EarthRights International
    Format/size: PDF (49.76 K)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.earthrights.org/publication/report-international-labour-organization-forced-labor-burma-...
    Date of entry/update: 01 November 2010


    Title: Zwangsarbeit in Burma: Europäisches Investment finanziert militärische Unterdrückung
    Date of publication: June 2001
    Description/subject: forced labour, ILO, human rights, international economic relations. Bericht über Zwangsarbeit in Burma. Der Artikel von Tom Kramer beleuchtet auch den Aspekt von Auslandsinvestitionen und wie auslaendische Unternehmen von der Zwangsarbeit profitieren.
    Author/creator: Tom Kramer, Deutsch von Gudrun Witte
    Language: Deutsch
    Source/publisher: Südostasien Jg. 17, Nr. 2 / Asienhaus
    Format/size: html 24k
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: SPDC & DKBA Orders to Villages: Set 2001-A
    Date of publication: 18 May 2001
    Description/subject: Papun, Pa'an, Thaton, Nyaunglebin, Toungoo, & Dooplaya Districts.This report presents direct translations of over 500 order documents and letters sent to villages by SPDC military units and authorities from late 1999 through January 2001. Over 300 of them contain demands for forced labour, negating the SPDC's claims to have put a stop to the practice. Others were used to restrict the movements and activities of villagers, demand crop quotas, extortion money, food and building materials without payment, and order villagers to cooperate with SPDC occupation troops in several different ways. Many of them threaten to arrest and detain village elders, shell villages with mortar fire, shoot villagers, or pillage, burn or relocate villages if they fail to comply. This report, our longest in almost 10 years of human rights documentation, is part of KHRG's ongoing project to translate and publish these orders as evidence(previous sets can be seen in "SPDC & DKBA Orders to Villages: Set 2000-B" and other earlier reports); even as it went to print, we had already obtained over 300 newer order documents which we are currently processing for upcoming release.
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Orders Reports (KHRG #2001-02)
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Northeastern Pa'an District: Villagers Fleeing Forced Labour Establishing SPDC Army Camps, Building Access Roads and Clearing Landmines
    Date of publication: 20 February 2001
    Description/subject: Information on a new flow of refugees from northeastern Pa'an District into Thailand. The villagers say that they fled their village in mid-January 2001 because SPDC troops are using them as porters, forced labour on an access road, and Army camp labour in order to strengthen the regime's control over this contested area. Worst of all, the villagers say they are being ordered to clear landmines in front of the SPDC Army's road-building bulldozer, and to make way for new Army camps.
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG Information Update #2001-U1)
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Appendices Submitted by ICFTU to ILO
    Date of publication: February 2001
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Convict Porters: The Brutal Abuse of Prisoners on Burma’s Frontlines
    Date of publication: 20 December 2000
    Description/subject: The Brutal Abuse of Prisoners on Burma's Frontlines. Based on KHRG interviews with prison convicts from all over Burma who have escaped forced labour for SPDC troops, this report tells the story of their arrest, sentencing, life in the prisons and the increasing use of convicts as porters by Burma's military junta. Documents the arbitrary arrest and sentencing of people to long jail terms for petty offences, the brutal and inhuman conditions in the prisons, and the even more brutal abuse and killings of convicts who are forced to go into combat situations with the military - in many cases after their sentences should have expired. This report also includes an Annex of Interviews.
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Regional & Thematic Reports (KHRG #2000-060)
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


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


    Title: Monks Used to Recruit Forced Labour
    Date of publication: October 2000
    Description/subject: "...According to reliable sources, military authorities in Karen State have been turning to local Buddhist abbots to recruit villagers for road-building and other construction projects. The sources added that sizeable donations were being offered to the senior monks in exchange for their cooperation..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: "The Irrawaddy", Vol. 8. No. 10 (Intelligence section)
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


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


    Title: Summary of Forced Labour in Burma (Information Update)
    Date of publication: 07 August 1997
    Description/subject: "These notes are intended to provide a brief summary of the systematic use of forced labour by the State Law & Order Restoration Council (SLORC) military junta ruling Burma. For further details and supporting evidence, we suggest that the Commission refer to the other reports already submitted by the Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG). These supporting documents include written/typed order documents sent to villages by SLORC military units and administrative bodies demanding that villages provide forced labour under threat of retribution should they fail..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG #97-S1)
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


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


    Title: Forced Labour Around Taungoo Town
    Date of publication: 28 July 1996
    Description/subject: "The interviews in this report are with two Karen refugees who recently visited relatives in the plains just east of Taungoo town, in the far north of Karen State. Their accounts focus on the land destruction and forced labour of many villages east of Taungoo for the Pa Thee Chaung (Pa Thee River) hydroelectric dam project, as well as other kinds of forced labour such as standing guard along the roadsides. The Pa Thee dam project started about 2 years ago and is supposed to be completed this year. It has been done entirely with forced labour of villagers, and no compensation has been given to villages, in particular Ywa Gyi village, which have lost their homes and land to the project..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Regional & Thematic Reports (KHRG #96-28)
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


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


    Title: Forced Labour in Mon Areas
    Date of publication: 22 May 1996
    Description/subject: The accounts below were given by villagers from coastal areas of Mon State and Tenasserim Division in southern Burma, ranging from Kya In Seik Gyi Township in the north to Ye Pyu Township in the south. The main problems they discuss are forced labour on the Ye-Tavoy railway, the Ye-Tavoy motor road and other roads, at army camps and as porters, and the increasing extortion of money from villagers by the ever-increasing number of SLORC troops in the region. Ye Town now has regular curfews; parts of Ye Pyu Township are under martial law because of the gas pipeline project; travel is becoming more difficult as more and more army checkpoints are set up where everyone has to pay in order to pass.
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Regional & Thematic Reports (KHRG #96-20)
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Forced Labour in the Irrawaddy Delta
    Date of publication: 16 May 1996
    Description/subject: "The area is fertile farmland with a population which is half Karen and half Burman. Out of sight of the rest of the world and with no easy escape for the people who live there, it has seen some of the SLORC’s worst human rights abuses, particularly after a failed attempt by the Karen National Union to start a Karen uprising there in 1991. Now the region suffers from extensive forced labour on SLORC road-building projects and tourism-related projects such as Bassein Airport and the Nga Saw beach project..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Regional & Thematic Reports (KHRG #96-18)
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Burma Human Rights Yearbook 1994: 11 - Forced Labour and Slavery
    Date of publication: September 1995
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Human Rights Documentation Unit of the NCGUB
    Format/size: html (123K)
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Forced Labour in Burma
    Date of publication: August 1995
    Description/subject: "SLORC continues to show no remorse whatsoever for its continually expanding program of civilian forced labour throughout Burma. Roads, railways, dams, army camps, tourist sites, an international airport, pagodas, schools - virtually everything which is built in rural Burma is now built and maintained with theforced labour of villagers, as well as their money and building materials..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG Commentary)
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: SLORC Orders to Villages: Set 95-C: Mon Area: Ye-Tavoy Railway, Other Forced Labour, Etc
    Date of publication: 02 May 1995
    Description/subject: "The reportincludes the direct translations of some typical SLORC written orders received by Mon villages in southern Burma's Tenasserim Division, along the route of the Ye-Tavoy railway line which is currently being built with forced civilian and convict labour, and in the area where the SLORC / Total / Unocal gas pipeline from the Martaban Gulf is to come ashore en route to Thailand. All of the orders were signed by SLORC officers or officials, and in most cases were stamped with the military unit or local LORC stamp. Photocopies of the order documents themselves may be enclosed with this report, and if not they are available on request. Most of these orders concern forced labour, money and materials being extorted for construction of the railway, forced labour building a naval base which is most likely intended to protect the gas pipeline, extortion of labour and money to build houses for Mon soldiers who surrender to SLORC, general routine demands for money and labour, and summonses to 'meetings'. While many of the orders repeat each other, they are included to give an idea of the endless series of SLORC demands and threats faced by Mon villagers who are already struggling to survive. For each order included here, there are hundreds more which have been issued. Many are lost or destroyed, while others are impossible to obtain. We would like to express our sincere gratitude to those who helped us obtain copies of these documents..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Orders Reports (KHRG Photoset 95-C) (KHRG #95-15)
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Summary of Types of Forced Portering
    Date of publication: 11 April 1995
    Description/subject: "The use of civilian porters was common by the British Army in colonial days. Porters were men who were either hired for money, or conscripted from a village and made to carry supplies to the next village, where they were sent home and the process was repeated. After Burmese independence, the Burma Army continued using similar practices. However, as the Burma Army degenerated into a strictly repressive force and particularly after Ne Win took power in 1962, portering became forced, unpaid, harsher and more brutal. Long before SLORC took power in 1988, portering was already well-known among the people as a brutal form of slavery that must be escaped at any cost. It was already driving refugees across the borders..." _SLORC has not only taken portering to new extremes of brutality, but they have also used it as part of the "Four Cuts" policy which aims to cut off civilian support for opposition forces by terrorizing the civilian population and making them destitute. In this context, villages are faced with such constant demands for porters and other forced labour that they can barely work to support themselves anymore. Villagers and townspeople alike must constantly face the threat of various types of portering, primarily the following:[OPERATIONS PORTERS, PERMANENT PORTERS, EMERGENCY PORTERS, PORTERS OF OPPORTUNITY, PORTERING AS PUNISHMENT, CONVICT PORTERS, PAID PORTERS]
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Articles and Papers (KHRG #95-13)
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: SLORC Officers Talk About Forced Labour & Refugees
    Date of publication: 25 September 1994
    Description/subject: Transcript of part of a recorded conversation, southern Burma, mid-94. Insight into attitudes regarding villagers, NGOs, forced labour etc.
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG) Regional & Thematic Reports
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Report by an Escaped SLORC Munitions Porter
    Date of publication: 13 November 1992
    Description/subject: Including details on conditions in Mandalay Prison..."The following account was given through an interview in Burmese with a porter recently escaped from the SLORC’s current offensive in the northern Karen area of Saw Hta. He was serving a criminal sentence in Mandalay Prison when he was taken to Saw Hta as a munitions porter, so his description includes details of his arrest and imprisonment, conditions in Mandalay Prison, and his life as a porter. At the time of the interview he was still suffering from an open gash on the back of his head inflicted by a beating with a G3 rifle butt. On arrival, he also had severe bruises on his back caused by other rifle butt beatings..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG) Regional & Thematic Reports
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Testimonies of Porters Escaped from the SLORC Army
    Date of publication: 26 February 1992
    Description/subject: "These men all arrived at a Karen Army camp on February 13, 1992, after each spending over 2 months as porters for # 14 LIB of SLORC’s 66 Division. On arrival, the Karen soldiers noted that they were extremely emaciated and shaking from hunger and terror, both of their immediate past and their immediate future. This was clear when, despite their state of starvation, they were at first afraid to eat the rice given to them. By February 21, when this interview was conducted, they had already relaxed and recovered a great deal, but were still quite weak..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Testimony of Porters Escaped from SLORC Forces
    Date of publication: 25 January 1992
    Description/subject: "Following are the accounts of four women who were conscripted as munitions porters by the SLORC army, No. 1 Light Infantry Battalion, on or about December 23, 1991. They served for 22 days, experiencing all manners of suffering and atrocities, before escaping into the hands of the Karen National Union on about January 16, 1992. Because of their weakened state after escaping and their understandable shyness about discussing what they’d been through, learning their stories was a slow process. The testimonies included here are actually summaries of what came out over the course of several conversations in Burmese. Many of their experiences were common to all 4 women, so to avoid too much repetition not all the details of every incident have been copied into all four stories. For example, all four women described the looting and ransacking the SLORC soldiers did in villages, but it isn’t detailed in every written summary. The stories of the sick Karen boy and the women’s escape, which are written in Daw Hla Myaing’s testimony, were actually told in detail by all four women..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG) Regional & Thematic Reports
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


  • Non-ILO Reports on forced labour, including forced portering, in Arakan (Rakhine) State

    Individual Documents

    Title: Forced labour during the Arakan crisis: An overview of forced labour practices in North Arakan, Burma (June to August 2012)
    Date of publication: 31 August 2012
    Description/subject: "Additional Submission to the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) for consideration by the ILO Committee of Experts on the Application of Conventions and Recommendations (CEACR) – ILO Convention 29 31 August 2012.....The systemic and discriminatory practice of forced labour against the Rohingya, has continued, or even intensified, across large areas of North Arakan/Rakhine State in Burma/Myanmar, since deadly communal violence broke out in June 2012...in areas not directly affected by the June 2012 violence, ie. North Maungdaw and Buthidaung Township, forced labour remains much the same as in previous years and has even intensified in some areas. Large contingents of army troops have been deployed after a state of emergency was declared on 10 June. As a result, there was a substantial increase in demands for porters and guides in North Maungdaw and North Buthidaung to carry additional rations or to accompany soldiers on patrol in border areas. Villagers were forced to remain 4 to 5 days at a time in the hills along with army patrols. Large groups of forced labourers have also been summoned for road clearing and emergency camp repair damaged by monsoon rains and forced cultivation in army camps and paddy fields has been reported in many parts of Buthidaung..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Arakan Project
    Format/size: pdf (182K)
    Date of entry/update: 13 September 2012


    Title: Forced labour on the Sittwe-Rangoon Road
    Date of publication: 30 December 2002
    Description/subject: Sittwe, 30th December 02: "The repair of the weather-worn Sittwe Rangoon Road has been conducted by the use of extensive forced labour in Ann, the southern town of Rakhine State in the western part of Burma, according to our correspondent..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Narinjara news
    Format/size: html (14K)
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: FORCED LABOUR AND EXTORTION STILL EXISTS IN ARAKAN
    Date of publication: 26 December 2002
    Description/subject: Buthidaung, December 26: "Forced labour and extortion are still continuing in Arakan State even if SPDC authorities have officially denied the existence any forced labour across the country, according to our correspondent..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: KALADAN NEWS
    Format/size: html (8K)
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Forced Labour in Road Construction
    Date of publication: 10 December 2002
    Description/subject: Sittwe, 10 December: "The dilapidated Sittwe-Rangoon Road connecting the western state of Rakhine with the Burmese capital has been under repair since the 17th November...In the Mrebon section about 1,700 people has been used as forced labour to do the repair work till 1 December, in Ann about one hundred people have been used everyday as forced labour, while the number in the Kyauktaw-Mrauk-u section could not be established..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Narinjara News
    Format/size: html (10K)
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Muslims from Burma flee forced labour
    Date of publication: 05 December 2002
    Description/subject: Cox's Bazaar, 5 November: "A fresh intrusion of Muslims from Burma including the Rohingya Muslims has been reported through the porous borders of the south-eastern district of Bangladesh close to Burma's western border, reports our correspondent..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Narinjara news
    Format/size: html (13K)
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: ARMY USED FORCED LABOUR IN ARAKAN STATE
    Date of publication: 14 November 2002
    Description/subject: "Buthidaung, November 14: The Commander of the Military Operation Command of (MOC-15) of Buthidaung Township, Arakan State used forced labor for reaping his own crop, according to our source. The villagers of Nanragoon and Quandaung village tracts of Buthidaung township of Arakan State had to pay 100 labors daily for reaping the said Commanders own paddy crop from last October 22 to 27. The two village tracts, about one mile east of Buthidaung town consisting of 1125 households, said a villager..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Kaladan News
    Format/size: html (9K)
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Burmese junta issues orders to stop forced conscription
    Date of publication: 05 November 2002
    Description/subject: "Sittwe, 5th November: The Western Command in Rakhine State in the western part of Burma has issued directives to stop forceful conscription for the Burmese Army..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Narinjara news
    Format/size: html (9K)
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Nasaka behind indicting a UNHCR official retaliation to reports on forced labour?
    Date of publication: 10 October 2002
    Description/subject: Maungdaw, 10 October 02: "The Nasaka, Burmese border security forces, have masterminded for filing a legal case against Mr Garry, the Philippine Education-in-charge at Maungdaw, the western border town in Burma's Rakhine State bordering with Bangladesh, according to an insider source..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Narinjara news
    Format/size: HTML (8k)
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Burmese Muslims flee starvation and forced labour in western Burma
    Date of publication: 07 October 2002
    Description/subject: Maungdaw, 7 October 02: "Fresh reports of Muslims in the western part of Burma fleeing starvation and forced labour to Bangladesh have begun to flood in. Our correspondent from Maungdaw in Rakhine (Arakan) State in Burma has said that while repatriation of 22,000 Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh has been moving at snail's pace due to reluctance shown by the Burmese authority, there are new instances of Rohingyas leaving Burma in large numbers..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Narinjara news
    Format/size: html (9K)
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Burmese Junta uses Forced Labour Freshly in Rakhine State in Western Burma
    Date of publication: 23 August 2002
    Description/subject: Maungdaw, 23 Aug. 02: "... There are reports of new incidents of extensive use of forced labour in and around Maungdaw in Rakhaing (Arakan) state, Western Burma, which has caused to raise tough arguments between the UNHCR and the Burmese law enforcement agencies including the officials of the military junta..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Narinjara News
    Format/size: html (6K)
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: CONSTRUCTION OF ANOTHER NEW MODEL VILLAGE FOR NEW SETTLERS IN MAUNGDAW TOWNSHIP
    Date of publication: 18 August 2002
    Description/subject: "Maungdaw, August 18: At about 50 houses are being built in Nasaka Area No. 2, between Ngaran Chaung and Lanchi villages of Maungdaw Township, adjacent to the Burma-Bangladesh border for the new Buddhist settlers by the forced labour of Rohingya villagers, said a member of local village council..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Kaladan Press Network
    Format/size: html (8K)
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Land Confiscation And Forced Labour For Model Villages:
    Date of publication: 08 June 2002
    Description/subject: "Maungdaw, Arakan, June 08: The commander of the Sector No. 6 Major Than Tun has confiscated about 300 acres of Rohingyas’ lands from “Khoror Dale” (Nwa-ron-daung) village, a place 3.5 miles north of Maungdaw while extracting forced labour for constructing 80 tin roofed houses for the new Buddhist settlers. This has been done by the order, dated May 13, of Lt. Col. Soe Twe, the chairman of the District Peace and Development Council (DPDC) and Lt. Col. Aung Ngwe, the Commander of Nasaka headquarters of Maungdaw Township, said a trader to the Kaladan Press..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Kaladan Press Network
    Format/size: html (8K)
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: FORCED LABOUR FOR ROADWORKS
    Date of publication: 04 June 2002
    Description/subject: "Buthidaung, Arakan, June 04: On May 12, the commander of the Military Operation Command (MOC) No.15 Brig. General Sein Hlaing has ordered the Village Peace and Development Council (VPDC) chairmen and secretaries of 5 Rohingya villages of Buthidaung township to build a 10 kilometre long connecting road between battalion No. 551 and the jetty of Mayu river at Buthidaung town, told Kaladan Press by a retired school teacher..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Kaladan Press Network
    Format/size: html (9K)
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Forced Labour and Lands Confiscation Continued in Arakan
    Date of publication: 30 May 2002
    Description/subject: "Maungdaw,Arakan, May 30: On May 25, 2002 the SPDC armed forces ordered to the chairmen of the many local Village Peace and Development Council ( VPDC ) in Maungdaw Township, Arakan State to supply house building materials and construct a total of 347 houses within the next few months on the confiscation lands of Rohingyas with the forced labour of the Rohingya villagers, said a VPDC chairman..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Kaladan Press Network
    Format/size: html (12K)
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: FORCED LABOUR IN RUBBER PLANTATIONS IN ARAKAN STATE
    Date of publication: 02 March 2002
    Description/subject: Ponnagyun, 2 March 02: "In the military rubber plantations in the south western state of Burma villagers have been used as forced labourers..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Narinjara news
    Format/size: html (6K)
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: UNHCR OFFICIAL FINDS FORCED LABOUR EXTENSIVELY PRACTISED IN RAKHINE STATE
    Date of publication: 21 January 2002
    Description/subject: Maungdaw, 21st January 02: "Reports on forced labour being practised extensively across Rakhine State, the western member of Myanmar, have started to pour in to us through traders coming to this border town..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Narinjara news
    Format/size: html (7K)
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


  • Non-ILO Reports on forced labour, including forced portering, in Karen (Kayin) State

    Individual Documents

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


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


    Title: Persistent forced labour demands stop in six villages in Bilin Township as of September 2012
    Date of publication: 04 July 2013
    Description/subject: "This report is based on information submitted to KHRG in July 2012 and April 2013 by a community member trained by KHRG to monitor human rights conditions, describing events occurring in Bilin Township, Thaton District between April 2012 and April 2013. In April 2012, approximately 721 villagers from six villages had to provide 5,000 bamboo poles and more than 20,000 thatch shingles without compensation for Tatmadaw Light Infantry Division (LID) #44's Lay Kay army camp. LID #44 soldiers also ordered villagers to serve as messengers for their camp without payment. D--- villagers again were ordered to provide thatch for repairing barracks at Lay Kay army camp in September 2012, but according to the community member who regularly visits the Lay Kay area, the Tatmadaw has not made any further orders for forced labour in the area since then."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: html, pdf (811K)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/sites/default/files/khrg13b41.pdf
    Date of entry/update: 10 August 2013


    Title: Papun Situation Update: Bu Tho Township, January to March 2013
    Date of publication: 18 June 2013
    Description/subject: "This report includes a situation update submitted to KHRG in March 2013 by a community member describing events occurring in Papun District between January and March 2013. The report describes the use of villagers from approximately 40 villages in Htee Th'Daw Hta village tract for forced labour. The perpetrators were led by the presiding monk of Myaing Gyi Ngu, U Thuzana. Villagers, including elderly people, women and children, have been forced to work on the construction of the Htee Lah Eh Hta Bridge. Villagers are required to perform labour for consecutive days and are not informed of what length of time they will be required to work before the project's completion. The report also describes a landmine incident on February 11th 2013, which occurred between P--- village and S--- village in K'Ter Tee village tract, Bu Tho Township. A landmine exploded while five villagers were transporting sand by car for the Green Hill Company and all five villagers in the vehicle were killed. No armed group took responsibility for the incident, though the Green Hill Company compensated 300,000 kyat (US $318.13) to the family of each victim. Additionally, the manager of the company, Ko Myo, donated 200,000 (US $212.10) kyat to each of the victims' families."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: html, pdf (268K)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/sites/default/files/khrg13b35.pdf
    Date of entry/update: 10 August 2013


    Title: Incident Report: Forced labour in Thaton District, April 2012
    Date of publication: 31 May 2013
    Description/subject: "The following incident report was written by a community member who has been trained by KHRG to monitor human rights abuses. The community member who wrote this report described an incident that occurred on April 24th 2012, where soldiers from BGF Battalion #1014 ordered the villagers of T---, W---, V--- and X---, in Hpa-an Township, Thaton District, to do forced labour on plantation land that they had confiscated for private companies, for three weeks without providing any pay, food or tools. The information was learned when the community member interviewed Saw B---, a 36 year-old chairman from W--- village. This report has been summarized along with three other Incident Reports received from this area in: “Border Guard #1014 forced labour and forced recruitment, April to May 2012,” KHRG, May 2013."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: html, pdf (118K)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2013/khrg13b25.html
    http://www.khrg.org/sites/default/files/khrg13b27.pdf
    Date of entry/update: 18 June 2013


    Title: Incident Report: Land confiscation and forced labour in Thaton District, April 2012
    Date of publication: 27 May 2013
    Description/subject: The following incident report was written by a community member who has been trained by KHRG to monitor human rights abuses, which describes an incident that occurred on April 25th 2012, when BGF soldiers forced villagers from T--- village, Meh K'Na Hkee village tract, Hpa-an Township, Thaton District, to clear plantations owned by Thein Lay Myaing and Shwe Than Lwin companies, which were located on land confiscated from the villagers. The report identifies the perpetrators as Thein Lay Myaing and Shwe Than Lwin companies, KSDDP and a company affiliated with BGF Battalion #1014, commanded by Tin Win and based out of Law Pu village in Hpa-an Township. This report has been summarized along with three other Incident Reports received from this area in: "BGF Battalion #1014 forced labour and forced recruitment, April to May 2012," KHRG, May 2013.
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: htmlpdf, (125K)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2013/khrg13b24.html
    http://www.khrg.org/sites/default/files/khrg13b24.pdf
    Date of entry/update: 18 June 2013


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


    Title: Papun Situation Update: Bu Tho Township, November 2011 to July 2012
    Date of publication: 12 April 2013
    Description/subject: "This report includes a situation update submitted to KHRG in November 2012 by a community member, describing events occurring in Papun District from November 2011 to July 2012. The report describes restrictions placed upon villagers' movement by Major Thi Ha of Tatmadaw LIB #212; villagers were told not to travel to their farms and were threatened with being shot at if they were seen outside of their village. Villagers also faced restrictions on their movement as a result of unexploded landmines. The community member also describes the use of villagers for forced labour in May 2012 by BGF Battalions #1013 and #1014, including the collection of materials for the building of an army camp for Battalion #1013. The village heads of P---, as well as two villagers, were ordered to stay at BGF #1014's camp in order to work in the camp and porter for the soldiers. Also described, is an incident prompting fear amongst villagers, in which KNLA Battalion #102 Major Saw Hsa Yu Moo shot a gun in front of a villager's house. The community member raises concerns that, despite the ceasefire, cases of villagers being threatened, forced labour, and risks from landmines, continue to pose serious problems for villagers..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: html, pdf (267K)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2013/khrg13b20.html
    http://www.khrg.org/sites/default/files/khrg13b20.pdf
    Date of entry/update: 30 April 2013


    Title: Papun Situation Update: Bu Tho Township, July to October 2012
    Date of publication: 11 April 2013
    Description/subject: "This report includes a situation update submitted to KHRG in November 2012 by a community member describing events occurring in Papun District, during the period between July 2012 to October 2012. It specifically discusses forced labour, torture, the activity of major armed groups in the Bu Tho Township area, including the KNLA, DKBA, Tatmadaw and BGF, as well as villagers' healthcare, education and livelihood problems. The report describes how BGF Battalion #1014, led by Commander Maw Hsee, continues to demand materials and forced labour from villagers in order to build army camps. The report also provides details about a 50-year-old L--- villager, named Maung P---, who was arrested and tortured by the Tatmadaw Military Operation Command Column #2, which is under Battalion #44 and commanded by Hay Tha and Aung Thu Ra, because he asked other villagers to deliver a letter that the Tatmadaw demanded he deliver. The report includes information about the different challenges villagers face in Burma government and non-government controlled areas, as well as the ways villagers access healthcare from the KNU or the Burma government. According to the community member, civilians continue to face problems with their livelihood, which are caused by BGF and DKBA activities, but are improving since the ceasefire; also described are problems faced by villagers caused by natural factors, such as unhealthy crops and flooding. In order to improve crop health, farmers are using traditional remedies, but the community member mentions that those remedies do not address the problems well. Moreover, this report mentions how villagers pursue alternative livelihoods during intervals between farming and to cope with food shortages, including logging and selling wood..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: html, pdf (271K)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2013/khrg13b18.html
    http://www.khrg.org/sites/default/files/khrg13b18.pdf
    Date of entry/update: 30 April 2013


    Title: Papun Situation Update: Forced labour in Bu Tho Township, January to February 2013
    Date of publication: 11 April 2013
    Description/subject: "This report includes a situation update submitted to KHRG in February 2013 by a community member describing events occurring in Papun District, from January to February 2013. During this period, the community member describes continuous demands for forced labour in Bu Tho Township by Border Guard Force #1013 and #1014 led by Battalion Commander Saw Hla Kyaing and Saw Maung Chit, respectively. Specifically, villagers in Meh P'Ree and Kyaw Pah village tracts were demanded to collect building materials for Border Guard Force soldiers; serve as messengers; perform sentry duties; and do domestic duties in the army camp and porter for the soldiers. Further, the community member describes the use of villagers for forced labour by U Thuzana, the presiding monk of Myaing Gyi Ngu; all family members from every household in five village tracts, including women and children, were forced to work on the construction of a bridge..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: html, pdf (291K)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2013/khrg13b21.html
    http://www.khrg.org/sites/default/files/khrg13b21.pdf
    Date of entry/update: 30 April 2013


    Title: Incident Report: Forced Labour in Papun District #2, February 2012
    Date of publication: 29 March 2013
    Description/subject: "The following incident report was submitted to KHRG in May 2012 by a community member describing an incident that began on February 22nd 2012 in Dwe Lo Township, Papun District, where Border Guard Force (BGF) Battalion #1014 soldiers forced between 70 or 80 villagers to construct their army camp without providing any wage, the necessary building materials for construction or medical care for villagers who became sick while labouring. According to the community member who wrote this report, forced labour demands continue, but are described by villagers as having decreased to a level with which the demands do not significantly infringe upon their normal routine and less precautions are taken..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: html, pdf (161K)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2013/khrg13b13.html
    http://www.khrg.org/sites/default/files/khrg13b13.pdf
    Date of entry/update: 01 May 2013


    Title: Border Guard #1014 demands for labour and goods in Papun District, May 2012
    Date of publication: 25 March 2013
    Description/subject: "This report is based on information submitted to KHRG in May 2012 by a community member[1] describing events occurring in Papun District, in May 2012, involving soldiers from Border Guard Battalion #1014, which is based out of K'Ter Tee and Hpaw Htee Hku villages. Commander Nyunt Thein and his Battalion Commander Maung Chit from the Battalion #1014 were identified, by name, as the ones who committed the abuses. Villagers were forced to build a camp for the Battalion #1014, which was also reported to have looted items from the villagers and forced them to do the camp's work, all of which is uncompensated..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: html, pdf (253K)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2013/khrg13b9.html
    http://www.khrg.org/sites/default/files/khrg13b9.pdf
    Date of entry/update: 01 May 2013


    Title: Nyaunglebin Situation Update: Moo Township, June to November 2012
    Date of publication: 11 December 2012
    Description/subject: "This report includes a situation update submitted to KHRG in November 2012 by a community member describing events occurring in Nyaunglebin District, during the period between June and November 2012. The community member suggests that human rights abuses have decreased in the Moo Township area by 60 percent after the signing of the preliminary ceasefire agreement by the Karen National Union and the Burma government. The community member raises difficulties faced by villagers, including the consequences on agriculture production of unseasonable rain, and goes on to describe human rights abuses that have continued to take place, including the restriction of movement and forced labour. In Moo Township, landmines planted by the Tatmadaw and the Karen National Liberation Army remain underground, causing villagers to feel unsafe to travel. The report describes how, on October 13th 2012, Officer Aung Ko Ko from Light Infantry Battalion (LIB) #590, Column #4, released an order to take action on villagers without written permission to travel to hill fields, farm huts and betel nut plantations: thus restricting freedom of movement and trade. On September 16th 2012, D--- villagers were ordered by LIB #599 soliders to cut bamboos and wood used for making fences. The existence of Tatmadaw camps has also been an obstacle to villagers doing their livelihoods safely."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: pdf (116K), html
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b84.html
    Date of entry/update: 23 December 2012


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


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


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


    Title: Papun Interview: Saw D---, January 2012
    Date of publication: 19 July 2012
    Description/subject: "This report contains the full transcript of an interview conducted during January 2012 in Bu Thoh Township, Papun District, by a community member trained by KHRG to monitor human rights conditions. The community member interviewed Saw D---, the 44-year-old L--- village head, who described forced labour, Tatmadaw and Border Guard targeting of civilians, demands for food, and denial of humanitarian services, such as a school. He specifically described that both the Border Guard and the KNLA planted landmines around the village and, as a result, the villagers had to flee to another village because they were afraid and unable to continue with their farming. Saw D--- also mentioned that the Tatmadaw often made orders for forced portering without payment, or if they did pay, the payments were not fair for the villagers, including one villager who stepped on a landmine while portering. In addition, he described an incident in which one villager was shot at and arbitrarily tortured while returning from Myaing Gyi Ngu town to L--- village. Saw D--- also raised concerns regarding food shortages and the adequate provision of education for children."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: pdf (306K), html
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b66.html
    Date of entry/update: 12 August 2012


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


    Title: Papun Interview: Saw T---, December 2011
    Date of publication: 16 July 2012
    Description/subject: "This report contains the full transcript of an interview conducted during December 2011 in Bu Tho Township, Papun District by a community member trained by KHRG to monitor human rights conditions. The community member interviewed a 40-year-old Buddhist monk, Saw T---, who is a former member of the Karen National Defence Organisation (KNDO), Democratic Karen Buddhist Army (DKBA) and the Border Guard, who described activities pertaining to Border Guard Battalion #1013 based at K'Hsaw Wah, Papun District. Saw T--- described human rights abuses including the forced conscription of child soldiers, or the forcing to hire someone in their place, costing 1,500,000 Kyat (US $1833.74). This report also describes the use of landmines by the Border Guard, and how villagers are forced to carry them while acting as porters. Also mentioned, is the on-going theft of villagers money and livestock by the Border Guard, as well as the forced labour of villagers in order to build army camps and the transportation of materials to the camps; the stealing of villagers' livestock after failing to provide villagers to serve as forced labour, is also mentioned. Saw T--- provides information on the day-to-day life of a soldier in the Border Guard, describing how villagers are forcibly conscripted into the ranks of the Border Guard, do not receive treatment when they are sick, are not allowed to visit their families, nor allowed to resign voluntarily. Saw T--- described how, on one occasion a deserter's elderly father was forced to fill his position until the soldier returned. Saw T--- also mentions the hierarchical payment structure, the use of drugs within the border guard and the training, which he underwent before joining the Border Guard. Concerns are also raised by Saw T--- to the community member who wrote this report, about his own safety and his fear of returning to his home in Papun, as he feels he will be killed, having become a deserter himself as of October 2nd 2011."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: pdf (331K), html
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b63.html
    Date of entry/update: 12 August 2012


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


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


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


    Title: Incident Report: Papun District, June 2011
    Date of publication: 24 May 2012
    Description/subject: "The following incident report was written by a community member who has been trained by KHRG to monitor human rights abuses, and is based on information provided by 27-year-old Naw K---, a resident of Ny--- village in Dweh Loh Township. She described an incident that occurred on the evening of June 6th 2011, in which she was arrested by Tatmadaw IB #96 troops when returning to her home and forced to porter along with two other villagers, Saw W--- and Kyaw M--- before later escaping, an incident that was previously reported by KHRG in December 2012 in "Papun Situation Update: Dweh Loh Township, Received in November 2011". Security precautions taken by Tatmadaw troops on resupply operations are also mentioned, with Naw K--- describing how the two other villagers were shot at by IB #96 soldiers as they approached the agricultural area surrounding D--- village prior to their arrest. Naw K--- also highlights other issues associated with forced portering, specifically how requiring villagers to travel through unfamiliar areas contaminated by landmines places villagers at increased risk of landmine injury."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: pdf (255K), html
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b44.html
    Date of entry/update: 13 June 2012


    Title: Pa’an Situation Update: September 2011
    Date of publication: 12 May 2012
    Description/subject: "This report includes a situation update submitted to KHRG in October 2011 by a villager describing events occurring in Pa’an District, in the period between September and October 2011. Villagers in T’Nay Hsah Township are reported to be subject to demands for forced labour by Border Guard Battalion #1017, specifically to work on Battalion Commander Saw Dih Dih’s own plantations. Information is also provided on an incident that occurred in T’Nay Hsah Township in which the Karen National Liberation Army (KNLA) Battalion #101’s temporary camp in Kler Law Seh village was attacked with heavy weapons by Border Guard Battalions #1017 and #1019, and by Tatmadaw Light Infantry Division (LID) #22. Since the takeover of the KNLA Battalion #101 camp by Border Guard troops, villagers in T’Nay Hseh Township have experienced an increase in demands for forced labour such as portering, as well as demands for villagers to cook at the Border Guard base and to serve as soldiers in the Border Guard, with payment demanded in lieu of military service. Such abuses are also described in the report, "Pa'an Situation Update: September 2011", published by KHRG on October 24th 2011, and "Pa'an Situation Update: September 2011 to January 2012", published by KHRG on May 2nd 2012. Border Guard troops have also embarked on the extensive laying of landmines near Th--- village, including near villagers' fields, and one villager was reported to have been seriously injured by a landmine whilst serving as a soldier in the Border Guard. Villagers are said to be concerned about the potential impact of the landmines on the welfare of their livestock, with one villager reportedly confronting a Border Guard soldier over this issue."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: pdf (129K), html
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b41.html
    Date of entry/update: 15 May 2012


    Title: Abuses since the DKBA and KNLA ceasefires: Forced labour and arbitrary detention in Dooplaya
    Date of publication: 07 May 2012
    Description/subject: "In the six months since DKBA Brigade #5 troops under the command of Brigadier-General Saw Lah Pwe ('Na Kha Mwe') agreed to a ceasefire with government forces, and in the four months since a ceasefire was agreed between KNLA and government troops, villagers in Kawkareik Township have continued to raise concerns regarding ongoing human rights abuses, including the arbitrary detention and violent abuse of civilians, and forced labour demands occurring as recently as February 24th 2012. One of the villagers who provided information contained in this report also raised concerns about ongoing landmine contamination in two areas of Kawkareik Township, despite the placing of warning signs in one area in January 2012 and the incomplete removal of some landmines by bulldozer from another area in March 2012. The same villager noted that the remaining landmines, some of which are in a village school compound and in agricultural areas, continue to present serious physical security risks to local villagers, as well as disrupt livelihood activities and children's education."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: pdf (296K), html
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12f2.html
    Date of entry/update: 10 May 2012


    Title: Pa'an Situation Update: September 2011 to January 2012
    Date of publication: 02 May 2012
    Description/subject: "This report includes a situation update submitted to KHRG in January 2012 by a villager describing events occurring in Pa'an District between September 2011 and January 2012, and contains updated information concerning military activity in the area, specifically Border Guard Battalion #1017's use of forced labour and their planting of landmines. In September 2011, over 200 villagers from Th---, Sh---, G--- and M--- were forced to harvest beans and corn, an incident which is also described in the report "Pa'an Situation Update: September 2011", published by KHRG on November 25th 2011. Villagers are also described as being forced to porter rations, ammunition and landmines, and carry out various tasks at Battalion #1017's camp. The pervasive presence of landmines has resulted in the deaths of two villagers and injuries to eight others in Sh--- and K--- village tracts, as well as the deaths of villagers' livestock. Information is also provided on the Democratic Karen Buddhist Army (DKBA) ceasefire with the Tatmadaw and their subsequent transformation into the Border Guard, and how this has reduced the capacity of soldiers to engage in mining and logging enterprises. The subsequent increase in pressure on villagers by DKBA and Karen National Liberation Army (KNLA) troops to resist Border Guard military recruitment demands had meant that village heads often fled, rather than serve their one-year term. Villagers' perspectives on the January 2012 ceasefire agreement between the Karen National Union (KNU) and the Burma government are also outlined, as are villagers' responses to abuses, including the introduction of a village head system that rotates on a monthly basis..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: pdf (242K), html
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b40.html
    Date of entry/update: 10 May 2012


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


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


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


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


    Title: Toungoo Interview: Saw E---, September 2011
    Date of publication: 06 April 2012
    Description/subject: "This report contains the full transcript of an interview conducted during September 2011 in Daw Pah Koh Township, Toungoo District by a villager trained by KHRG to monitor human rights conditions. The villager interviewed D--- village head, Saw E---, who described being forced to serve as a guide for Tatmadaw soldiers in an area known to contain landmines. He also provided information about an incident in which two L--- villagers, Saw M--- and Saw P---, were killed by landmines on June 15th 2011 whilst being forced to guide a group of Tatmadaw soldiers. Saw E--- raised concerns regarding villagers' livelihoods, which have been undermined as a result of abnormal weather conditions. He also explained that the standard of education at D--- village school has suffered as a result of the schoolteachers' absences. To counter forced labour demands levied by the Tatmadaw, Saw E--- described challenging the soldiers for whom he was forced to guide by demanding to know their battalion number and commander's name. He also reported that he had on an occasion only partially complied with their demands, supplying 10 villagers as opposed to the 20 ordered, and discussed how he successfully negotiated with Tatmadaw soldiers to reduce the number of times that he was forced to meet with them each week."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: pdf (167K), html
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b34.html
    Date of entry/update: 12 April 2012


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


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


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


    Title: Toungoo Interview Transcript: Saw M---, December 2011
    Date of publication: 16 March 2012
    Description/subject: "This report contains the full transcript of an interview conducted during December 2011 in Daw Pa Ko Township, Toungoo District by a villager trained by KHRG to monitor human rights conditions. The villager interviewed 41-year-old Saw M---, a religious leader in K--- village, who described an incident which occurred on June 12th 2011 during which two K--- villagers, 32-year-old Saw H--- and 45-year-old Saw A---, were forced to guide Tatmadaw LIB # [censored for security] troops on active patrol. The two villagers were subsequently killed during fighting, which broke out when the LIB # [censored for security] patrol encountered KNLA soldiers on the vehicle road between K--- village and D--- village. Saw M--- told the villager who conducted this interview that the families of the two villagers who were killed received no compensation from the Tatmadaw, but have received support from the KNLA and from members of the local community. This incident was described in the previous KHRG report "Toungoo Interview: Saw D---, September 2011" and quotes from this interview are also included in the recent Toungoo field report "Ongoing forced labour and movement restrictions in Toungoo District"...."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: pdf (385K)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b27.html
    Date of entry/update: 12 April 2012


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


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


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


    Title: Toungoo Situation Update: November 2011 to January 2012
    Date of publication: 01 March 2012
    Description/subject: "This report includes a situation update submitted to KHRG in February 2012, by a villager describing events occurring in Toungoo District during the period between November 2011 and January 2012. It discusses augmented troop rotations, resupply operations and the sending of bulldozers to construct a new vehicle road between the 20-mile point on the Toungoo – Kler La road and Kler La. It also contains reports of forced labour, specifically the use of villagers to porter military equipment and supplies, to serve as set tha, and the clearing of vegetation by vehicle roads. Movement restrictions were also highlighted as a major concern for villagers living both within and outside state control, as the imposition of permission documents and taxes limits the transportation of cash crops, and impacts the availability of basic commodities. The villager who wrote this report raised villagers' concerns about rising food prices, the lack of medicine due to government restrictions on its transportation from towns to mountainous areas, and the difficulty in obtaining an education in rural villages beyond grades three and four. The villager who wrote this report flagged the ongoing use of landmines by armed groups and noted that this poses serious physical security risks, particularly where villagers are not notified of landmine-contaminated areas, but also noted that some villagers view the use of landmines by non-state armed groups in positive terms as a deterrent of Tatmadaw activity."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: pdf (122K), html
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b22.html
    Date of entry/update: 13 March 2012


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


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


    Title: Thaton Interview Transcript: Saw T---, April 2011
    Date of publication: 24 February 2012
    Description/subject: "This report contains the full transcript of an interview conducted during April 2011 in Pa'an Township, Thaton District by a villager trained by KHRG to monitor human rights conditions. The villager interviewed Saw T---, a 60-year-old Buddhist farmer and village head, who described demands for forced labour that occurred during 2011, including for guide duty and the production of thatch shingles and bamboo poles. Saw T---noted that Karen language is not permitted to be taught in the village school, and expressed concerns over the absence of a medical clinic in the village and a lack of rain during the previous year that resulted in a marked decrease in paddy outputs. Saw T--- noted that villagers share food to deal with increasing food insecurity and described an instance in which villagers only partially complied with a forced labour demand, producing and delivering only 300 thatch shingles to Tatmadaw soldiers, instead of the 500 that had been demanded."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: pdf (284K)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b18.html
    Date of entry/update: 25 February 2012


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


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


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


    Title: Papun Interview: Saw T---, August 2011
    Date of publication: 27 January 2012
    Description/subject: "This report contains the full transcript of an interview conducted during August 2011 by a villager trained by KHRG to monitor human rights conditions. The villager interviewed Saw T---, a 74 year-old Buddhist village head who described the planting of what he estimated to be about 100 landmines by government and non-state armed groups in the vicinity of his village. Saw T--- related ongoing instances of forced labour, specifically villagers forced to guide troops, porter military supplies and sweep for landmines, and described an incident in which two villagers stepped on landmines whilst being forced to serve as unpaid porters for Tatmadaw troops. He described a separate incident in which another villager stepped on and was killed by a landmine whilst fleeing from Border Guard soldiers who were attempting to force him to porter for one month. In both cases, victims' families received no compensation or opportunity for redress following their deaths. Saw T--- noted that landmines planted in agricultural areas have not been removed, rendering several hill fields unsafe to farm and resulting in the abandonment of crops. He illustrated the danger to villagers who travel to their agricultural workplaces by recounting an incident in which a villager's buffalo was injured by a landmine. He further explained that villagers' livelihoods have been additionally undermined by frequent demands for food and by looting of villagers' food and animals. Saw T--- highlighted the fact that demands are backed by explicit threats of violence, recounting an instance when he was threatened for failing to comply quicky by a Tatmadaw officer who held a gun to his head. Saw T--- noted that villagers have responded to negative impacts on their food production capacity by performing job for daily wages and sharing food with others and, in response to the lack of health facilities in their community, travel over two hours by foot to the nearest clinic in another village."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: pdf (299K), html
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b9.html
    Date of entry/update: 29 January 2012


    Title: Toungoo Interview: Saw D---, September 2011
    Date of publication: 27 January 2012
    Description/subject: "This report contains the full transcript of an interview conducted during September 2011 by a villager trained by KHRG to monitor human rights conditions. The villager interviewed Saw D---, a 37-year-old village head and betelnut farmer, who described serious abuses committed by soldiers in Than Daung Township under the command of MOC #9 during 2011, including an incident in which soldiers fired at and killed a 48-year-old villager while he was making charcoal and a separate incident in which two villagers were killed while being forced to guide Tatmadaw troops, when the soldiers came under fire from a non-state armed group. Saw D--- also described repeated demands for forced labour by soldiers from Tatmadaw LIB #378, under MOC #9, including one incident in which more than 100 villagers were forced to carry military rations for a month. Saw D--- also chose to highlight instances of past abuse including: arbitrary arrest, detention and violent abuse of religious leaders; theft and looting of villagers' livestock, food, and personal belongings; and the harrassment of female villagers. Saw D--- noted that villagers counter limited access to and cost of healthcare treatment at government facilities by using traditional cures in their own village and also respond to food insecurity by sharing food and pursuing alternative means of supporting their livelihoods with jobs for daily wages."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: pdf (317K), html
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b10.html
    Date of entry/update: 29 January 2012


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


    Title: Incident report: Four villagers forced to guide Tatmadaw troops in Thaton District
    Date of publication: 19 January 2012
    Description/subject: "The following incident report was written by a villager trained by KHRG to document human rights abuses, and details an incident that occurred in May 2011 during which Tatmadaw soldiers from LIB #216 arrested four villagers in Bilin Township, including two village headwomen, and forced them to accompany troops on active patrol. The two village headwomen told the villager who wrote this report that the Tatmadaw soldiers did not provide them with water nor allow them to return to their own village at night, forcing them to sleep in a monastery with the soldiers. One of the women said that the Tatmadaw soldiers told her that they were afraid they were going to be shot at by KNLA soldiers at the time she was forced to accompany them. The following morning, the four villagers successfully negotiated with the Tatmadaw commanding officers to secure their release and received 8,000 kyat (US $ 10.39) split unevenly between the four of them as compensation."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: html, pdf (269K)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b5.html
    Date of entry/update: 23 January 2012


    Title: Pa'an Interview: Naw K---, September 2011
    Date of publication: 13 January 2012
    Description/subject: "This report contains the full transcript of an interview conducted by a KHRG researcher in September 2011. The KHRG researcher interviewed Naw K---, a 45 year old woman from L--- village in Pa'an District, who described an incident in which Tatmadaw LID #22 and Tatmadaw Border Guard soldiers forced local villagers to porter military supplies and equipment while wearing Border Guard uniforms during a joint attack on a KNLA Battalion #101 camp at Kler Law Hseh. In the interview below, Naw K--- explained that, while she was attending a funeral in Th--- village, many Th--- villagers were absent from the village, some having already been arrested by Border Guard soldiers to serve as porters and others having fled the village due to fears that they would be arrested to porter. Naw K--- told KHRG that the Th--- village head informed her that he had to wear a Border Guard uniform while forced to accompany Border Guard soldiers during their attack on the KNLA camp at Kler Law Hseh and she witnessed him departing Th--- village in the company of Border Guard soldiers. This incident was previously described in the KHRG report "Pa'an Situation Update: September 2011," published on October 24th 2011. In addition, Naw K--- also mentioned additional forced labour demands placed on local villagers to work on government-owned agricultural projects. She also described how villagers attempt to mitigate the harmful effects of forced labour demands through negotiation with commanding officers, and strategic temporary displacement to avoid arrest."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: html, pdf (222K)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b2.html
    Date of entry/update: 18 January 2012


    Title: Thaton Interview: Naw L---, February 2011
    Date of publication: 10 January 2012
    Description/subject: "This report contains the full transcript of an interview conducted in February 2011 by a villager trained by KHRG to monitor human rights conditions. The villager interviewed Naw L---, a female village head from Bilin Township, Thaton District. Naw L--- described being interrogated and threatened at meetings with local Tatmadaw officers, including at times when she was pregnant. She described the killing of her son-in-law by then-DKBA Brigade #333 soldiers, and the defection of a Tatmadaw soldier to the KNLA, after which Tatmadaw soldiers arbitrarily arrested and tortured villagers and ordered Naw L--- to provide a firearm to replace the one taken by the defecting soldier. She also described how Tatmadaw soldiers forced H--- villagers to banish persons suspected of being KNLA soldiers and burn down their houses. Naw L--- explained that villagers face ongoing demands for forced labour, including forced portering of military rations, messenger and guide duty, for Tatmadaw, Border Guard and KNLA troops, but that she and her villagers employ a multitude of strategies to resist or mitigate abuse, including partial-compliance with forced labour demands; cultivating relationships with different, and oppositional, armed groups; lying about non-state armed groups’ soldiers and their operations; and successfully raising complaints to commanding officers about abuses perpetrated by their inferiors."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: html, pdf (284K)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2012/khrg12b1.html
    Date of entry/update: 18 January 2012


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


    Title: Toungoo Situation Update: July to October 2011
    Date of publication: 29 November 2011
    Description/subject: "This report includes a situation update submitted to KHRG in November 2011 by a villager describing events occurring in Toungoo District during the period between July and October 2011. It details incidents of violence against civilians, including: shooting and killing by Tatmadaw LIB #540 of two villagers hunting monkeys in an area adjacent to a Tatmadaw camp; arbitrary detentions of eight civilians, of whom only three have been released by LIB #539 and IB #73; and the beating of a village head following a KNLA attack against Tatmadaw troops. The villager also cites examples of a range of abuses affecting villagers' livelihoods, including: forced labour repairing a road and producing and delivering bamboo poles to a Tatmadaw camp; theft and damage of villagers' possessions by patrolling Tatmadaw troops, including destruction of villagers' durian and dogfruit trees; the imposition of movement restrictions preventing villagers from sleeping in their field huts, backed by an explicit threat of violence against villagers violating the ban; de facto movement restrictions on villagers due to Tatmadaw activity; and arbitrary demands for payment by Tatmadaw troops. This report also raises concerns about the health situation in Tantabin Township following the 2011 monsoon, including an outbreak of cholera that interfered with the harvest of cardamom, durian and paddy crops, and may have adverse consequences on villagers' food and financial security during the coming year. The report also notes that some villagers access health services from the KNU Health Department and other relief groups in response to constraints on access to health care in areas of Tantabin Township outside consolidated Tatmadaw control."
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: html, pdf (349K)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2011/khrg11b49.html
    Date of entry/update: 19 January 2012


    Title: Toungoo Interview: Saw F---, October 2011
    Date of publication: 25 November 2011
    Description/subject: "This report contains the full transcript of an interview conducted during October 2011 in Than Daung Township, Toungoo District by a villager trained by KHRG to monitor human rights conditions. The villager interviewed Saw F---, a 55-year-old resident of W--- village who fled his village and hid in the forest during a joint attack by soldiers from Tatmadaw Infantry Battalion (IB) #92 and Light Infantry Battalion (LIB) #603. According to Saw F---, on October 12th 2011, following a clash with Karen National Liberation (KNLA) soldiers at a location 45 minutes on foot from W---, Tatmadaw soldiers fired approximately 50 mortar rounds into W--- and nearby civilian areas and then entered W---, where soldiers fired small arms deliberately at villagers' houses, the Roman Catholic church and religious and cultural items; killed villagers' animals; and looted or damaged villagers' property including food stores, clothing, roofing materials and money. Saw F--- also reported that W--- villagers have had to provide forced labour delivering bamboo poles to Tatmadaw camps on multiple occasions in the past year; that the W--- school has been forced to close twice due to Tatmadaw accusations that villagers are communicating with non-state armed groups; and that villagers face obstacles in accessing healthcare due to their distance from the nearest health facility and the cost of travel. A full account of the attack on W---, including photo documentation and excerpts of this interview, is available in the bulletin "Tatmadaw soldiers shell village, attack church and civilian property in Toungoo District," published by KHRG on November 25th 2011."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: html, pdf (588K)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2011/khrg11b47.html
    Date of entry/update: 23 January 2012


    Title: Toungoo Situation Update: October 2011
    Date of publication: 25 November 2011
    Description/subject: "This report includes a situation update submitted to KHRG in November 2011 by a villager describing a joint attack on a village in Than Daung Township by soldiers from Tatmadaw Infantry Battalion #92 and Light Infantry Battalion #603. During the attack the Tatmadaw soldiers fired mortars into the village, prompting residents to flee into the nearby forest; soldiers then entered and fired small arms inside the village, and looted, damaged, or destroyed food, money and other property belonging to the villagers who had fled. A full account of the attack on W---, based on this and one other situation update written by a different villager, an interview with a resident of W---, and photo documentation is available in the bulletin "Tatmadaw soldiers shell village, attack church and civilian property in Toungoo District," published by KHRG on November 25th 2011.This report also notes that villagers in the area face demands for forced labour for local Tatmadaw units three or four times every year, specifically to serve as porters and guides for Tatmadaw troops and to clear vegetation from Tatmadaw camp perimeters. The villager who wrote this report further noted local concerns related to the provision of health care and education, as well as some of the strategies adopted by villagers in response to human rights concerns, including harvesting crops at night to protect livelihoods during Tatmadaw operations, and using traditional practices to treat illnesses in areas where Tatmadaw forces restrict transport of and trade in medicines."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: html, pdf (368K)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2011/khrg11b48.html
    Date of entry/update: 23 January 2012


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


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


    Title: Pa'an Situation Update: September 2011
    Date of publication: 24 October 2011
    Description/subject: "This report includes a situation update submitted to KHRG in September 2011 by a villager describing events occurring in Pa'an District in September 2011. It details an incident in which Tatmadaw and Tatmadaw Border Guard soldiers forced local villagers to porter military supplies and equipment while wearing Border Guard uniforms during a joint attack on a Karen National Liberation Army (KNLA) encampment at Kler Law Hseh. The villager who wrote this situation update also reported that since this attack Border Guard soldiers have been based in the Kler Law Hseh area and have forced villagers to porter or make payments in lieu of portering, as well as perform forced labour on military-owned agricultural projects. The villager also reported two distinct incidents in which Tatmadaw and Border Guard troops have confiscated villagers' land in order to build a military camp and cultivate bean plantations."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: pdf (122K), html
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2011/khrg11b38.html
    Date of entry/update: 29 January 2012


    Title: Pa'an Situation Update: June to August 2011
    Date of publication: 17 October 2011
    Description/subject: "This report includes a situation update submitted to KHRG in September 2011 by a villager describing events occurring in Pa'an District between June 2011 and August 2011. It details recent Tatmadaw and Tatmadaw Border Guard activity, including camp locations and troop strength, and incidents related to a forced relocation order issued to eight villages in Lu Pleh Township by Tatmadaw Border Guard units on July 15th 2011. After the July 20th deadline for relocation, Tatmadaw and Border Guard forces commenced joint attacks against six of the villages ordered to relocate, including multiple days of heavy shelling and machine gun fire which the villager who submitted this report described as indiscriminate. On July 20th 2011 Border Guard troops also deliberately killed villagers' livestock and fired mortars into civilian areas of R--- village, injuring a 50-year-old woman, while retreating from an attack by the Karen National Liberation Army (KNLA) on the Border Guard camp in R---. This report further documents Tatmadaw Border Guard demands for forced labour and forced porters. The villager who submitted this update raises villagers' concerns related to flooding along the Dta Greh [Hlaing Bwe] River during the 2011 monsoon season, and the abandonment of schools and loss of trade and livelihood opportunities due to forced relocation. This report notes that, in response to the abuses and concerns mentioned above, villagers in Pa'an District adopt strategies that include: moving to areas beyond Tatmadaw control, monitoring local security conditions, and hiding food stores in the jungle."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: pdf (404K), html
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2011/khrg11b40.html
    Date of entry/update: 29 January 2012


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


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


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


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


    Title: Tenasserim Situation Update: Te Naw Th'Ri Township, April 2011
    Date of publication: 26 September 2011
    Description/subject: "This report includes a situation update submitted to KHRG in April 2011 by a villager describing events occurring in Te Naw Th'Ri Township, Tenasserim Division between June 2010 and April 2011. The report details abuses related to land confiscation by Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP) officials; forced labour, including forced USDP membership; and attacks on villages in hiding, including the burning of houses, food stores, a school dormitory and supplies by Tatmadaw forces. This report also contains updated information concerning active Tatmadaw units in five areas of Tenasserim Division and relates health and education concerns of villagers in hiding in three areas of Te Naw Th'Ri Township."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: pdf (950K), html
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2011/khrg11b32.html
    Date of entry/update: 31 January 2012


    Title: Pa'an Situation Update: April 2011
    Date of publication: 21 September 2011
    Description/subject: "This report contains a situation update submitted to KHRG in April 2011 and written by a villager describing events occurring in Lu Pleh and Dta Greh townships in Pa'an District between February and April 2011. It contains information on incidents of forced labour by the Tatmadaw, including the use of villagers to build huts, deliver palm leaves for thatching buildings and provide unpaid forced labour during gold-mining and logging operations. It also documents the forced relocation of villagers from upland areas, and relates an incident in which a Tatmadaw deserter, who was later summarily executed by Tatmadaw troops, shot and injured a 53-year-old woman in Tantabin Township, Toungoo District. In response to human rights and related humanitarian concerns, including access to health care, the researcher reported that villagers travel covertly to seek medical care from cross-border groups, sell betel leaves to supplement incomes and laminate currency in plastic to prevent it from becoming damaged. This situation report also contains updated information on military activity in Pa'an District, specifically the defection of Tatmadaw Border Guard soldiers in February 2011 to a breakaway faction of the DKBA that had previously refused to transform into Border Guard battalions, and to the KNLA."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: pdf (763K), html
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2011/khrg11b31.html
    Date of entry/update: 01 February 2012


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


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


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


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


    Title: Nyaunglebin Interview: Saw My---, May 2011
    Date of publication: 04 August 2011
    Description/subject: "This report contains the full transcript of an interview conducted by a KHRG researcher in May 2011 with a villager from Ler Doh Township, Nyaunglebin District. The researcher interviewed Saw My---, a 45 year-old farmer who described his experiences when he was forced to leave his village in a mixed-administration area and live for two years in a neighbouring village, including specific incidents in which Tatmadaw soldiers fired small arms at children in school uniforms, forced women to serve as human shields for Tatmadaw columns during patrols, and ordered villagers at gunpoint to leave their homes and possessions during the rainy season. He further cited the following abuses: movement restrictions; forced labour; and arbitrary taxation and demands. Saw My--- also highlighted the difficulties his village currently faces accessing health care and education, but explained that villagers counter these difficulties by using traditional medicine and by hiring and supporting local teachers."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: pdf (713K)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2011/khrg11b22.html
    Date of entry/update: 18 February 2012


    Title: Nyaunglebin Interview: Naw Ka---, May 2011
    Date of publication: 03 August 2011
    Description/subject: "This report contains the full transcript of an interview conducted by a KHRG researcher in May 2011 with a villager from Ler Doh Township, Nyaunglebin District. The researcher interviewed Naw Ka---, a 50-year-old villager who described the situation prior to and after her community was forcibly relocated by the Tatmadaw in 2007. Naw Ka--- cited the following human rights abuses in her testimony: forced labour, including sentry duty and portering; arrest and detention, including physical violence against detained villagers; forced relocation; and movement restrictions. The interviewee also described the humanitarian challenges people in her community have faced, including serious constraints on access to adequate education for children, healthcare, and food. In order improve their humanitarian situation, Naw Ka--- explained how residents of her village decided to return to their homes in 2010 without formal permission from the Tatmadaw, despite villagers' fears that this action entailed serious risks to their physical security."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: pdf (706K), html
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2011/khrg11b21.html
    Date of entry/update: 18 February 2012


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


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


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


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


    Title: Thaton Situation Updates: May 2010 to January 2011
    Date of publication: 18 May 2011
    Description/subject: "This report includes two situation updates written by villagers describing events in Thaton District during the period between May 13th 2010 and January 31st 2011. The villagers writing the updates chose to focus on issues including: updates on recent military activity, specifically the rebuilding of Tatmadaw camps, and the following human rights abuses: demands for forced labour, including the provision of building materials; and movement restrictions, including road closure and requirements for travel permission documents. In these situation updates, villagers also express serious concerns regarding food security due to abnormal weather in 2010; rising food prices; the unavailability of health care; and the cost and quality of children's education."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: pdf (256K), html
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2011/khrg11b7.html
    Date of entry/update: 29 February 2012


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


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


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


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


    Title: Exploitative abuse and villager responses in Thaton District
    Date of publication: 25 November 2009
    Description/subject: "...SPDC control of Thaton District is fully consolidated, aided by the DKBA and a variety of other civilian and parastatal organisations. These forces are responsible for perpetrating a variety of exploitative abuses, which include a litany of demands for 'taxation' and provision of resources, as well as forced labour on development projects and forced recruitment into the DKBA. Villagers also report ongoing abuses related to SPDC and DKBA 'counter insurgency' efforts, including the placement of unmarked landmines in civilian areas, conscription of people as porters and 'human minesweepers' and harassment and violent abuse of alleged KNLA supporters. This report includes information on abuses during the period of April to October 2009..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Field Reports (KHRG #2009-F20)
    Format/size: html, pdf (531 KB)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2009/khrg09f20.html
    Date of entry/update: 29 November 2009


    Title: Forced recruitment, forced labour: interviews with DKBA deserters and escaped porters
    Date of publication: 13 November 2009
    Description/subject: "...This news bulletin provides the transcripts of eight interviews conducted with six soldiers and two porters who recently fled after being conscripted by the DKBA. These interviews confirm widespread reports that the DKBA has been forcibly recruiting villagers as it attempts to increase troop strength as part of a transformation into a government Border Guard Force in advance of the 2010 elections. The interviews also offer further confirmation that the DKBA continues to use children as soldiers and porters in front-line conflict areas. Three of the victims interviewed by KHRG are teenage boys; the youngest was just 13 when he was forced to join the DKBA..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Field Report (KHRG #2009-B11)
    Format/size: pdf (629 KB)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2009/khrg09b11.html
    Date of entry/update: 29 November 2009


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


    Title: SPDC and DKBA order documents: August 2008 to June 2009
    Date of publication: 27 August 2009
    Description/subject: "This report includes translated copies of 75 order documents issued by Burma Army and Democratic Karen Buddhist Army officers to village heads in Karen State between August 2008 and June 2009. These documents serve as supplementary evidence of ongoing exploitative local governance in rural Burma. The report thus supports the continuing testimonies of villagers regarding the regular demands for labour, money, food and other supplies to which their communities are subject by local military forces. The order documents collected here include demands for attendance at meetings; the provision of money and alcohol; the production and delivery of thatch shingles and bamboo poles; forced labour as messengers and porters for the military; forced labour on road repair; the provision of information on individuals and households; registration of villagers in State-controlled 'NGOs'; and restrictions on travel and the use of muskets. In almost all cases, such demands are uncompensated and backed by an implicit threat of violence or other punishment for non-compliance. Almost all demands articulated in the orders presented in this report involve some element of forced labour in their implementation..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Orders Reports (KHRG #2009-04 )
    Format/size: pfd (1.2 MB)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2009/khrg0904.html
    Date of entry/update: 15 November 2009


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


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


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


    Title: Routine forced labour in Pa'an District
    Date of publication: 29 October 2008
    Description/subject: "For those villagers living under the control of SPDC and DKBA forces in Pa'an District, certain forms of forced labour have now become routine. Such 'routine' forced labour includes: cultivation of rainy season and dry season rice crops on fields owned by DKBA officers, maintaining rubber plantations, roadside clearance of forest overgrowth following the rainy season, portering military supplies out to soldiers operating at 'frontline' army camps, collecting, preparing and delivering bamboo and thatch for use in the repair and construction of the region's many army camps, and temporarily serving as camp-based messengers. Combined, these various forms of forced labour significantly cut into crucial time villagers need for their own agricultural and other livelihoods activities. This report looks at cases of forced labour from July to September 2008 and includes a short video of recent forced labour in Pa'an District..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Field Reports (KHRG #2008-F15)
    Format/size: pdf (670 KB)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2008/khrg08f15.html
    Date of entry/update: 01 November 2009


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


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


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


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


    Title: Exploitative governance under SPDC and DKBA authorities in Dooplaya District
    Date of publication: 11 July 2008
    Description/subject: "With largely consolidated control over Dooplaya District in southern Karen State the SPDC and DKBA, as the two dominant (and allied) military forces, operate under a system of coexistence. The local civilian population, in turn, faces exploitative governance on two fronts as both SPDC and DKBA soldiers seek to extract money, labour, food and other supplies from them. Enforcing heavy movement restrictions on top of persistent exploitative demands, local communities are facing deteriorating livelihood opportunities, increasing poverty, and a constriction of educational and health care opportunities. Persistent human rights abuses thus foster the economic pressures fuelling the continuing migration of rural communities in Dooplaya District to refugee camps in Thailand and towards livelihood opportunities at urban centres in Burma and Thailand. This report examines the situation of abuse in Dooplaya District from January to June 2008..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Field Reports (KHRG #2008-F8)
    Format/size: pdf (666 KB)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2008/khrg08f8.html
    Date of entry/update: 01 November 2009


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


    Title: Oppressed twice over: SPDC and DKBA exploitation and violence against villagers in Thaton District
    Date of publication: 20 March 2008
    Description/subject: "Throughout Thaton District the SPDC has persistently worked to expand and entrench military control not only by increasing its own troops, but also by heavily relying on the DKBA as a local proxy force. Both groups exploit the civilian population to support their respective military hierarchies and local villagers thus face a double burden on their lives. This report looks at various forms and specific incidents of forced labour, extortion, violence and other abuse against villagers in Thaton District which SPDC and DKBA personnel have perpetrated up to February 2008..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Field Report (KHRG #2008-F4)
    Format/size: pdf (672 KB)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2008/khrg08f4.html
    Date of entry/update: 07 November 2009


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


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


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


    Title: State agencies, armed groups and the proliferation of oppression in Thaton District
    Date of publication: 24 September 2007
    Description/subject: "Throughout SPDC-controlled areas of Karen State the regime has been developing civilian agencies as extensions of military authority. On top of this, the junta has continued to strengthen the more traditional forms of militarisation and, at least in Thaton District, has firmly backed the expansion of DKBA military operations to control the civilian population and eradicate KNLA forces which continue to actively patrol the area. The people of Thaton District thus face a myriad of State agencies and armed groups which have overburdened them with demands for labour, money and supplies. While engaging with these groups, addressing the demands placed on them and attending to their own livelihoods, local villagers have sought to manage a delicate balance of seemingly impossible weights..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Field Report (KHRG #2007-F7)
    Format/size: pdf (1 MB)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2007/khrg07f7.html
    Date of entry/update: 08 November 2009


    Title: Shouldering the Burden of Militarisation: SPDC, DKBA and KPF order documents since September 2006
    Date of publication: 14 August 2007
    Description/subject: "Forced labour continues to be among the most pervasive of human rights abuses in Burma and a leading cause of displacement, both internally and as refugees into neighbouring countries. Villagers living in Karen State have expressly condemned the regular, and in many cases daily, demands for forced labour imposed upon them. According to these individuals forced labour has lead to collapsing livelihoods, increased poverty and severe difficulties in addressing health, education and other community needs; leading them to respond with varied strategies including flight and displacement. Such views have been consistent in thousands of KHRG interviews with local villagers conducted over the past 15 years. Despite these testimonies the State Peace and Development Council (SPDC), the military regime currently ruling Burma, continues to deny the practice of forced labour. However, order documents explicitly demanding forced labour and signed by SPDC officers are regularly collected by KHRG field researchers working throughout Karen State. These documents provide tangible evidence of the continued large-scale perpetration of forced labour in Karen State by military officers and civilian officials of the SPDC, the Democratic Karen Buddhist Army and the Karen Peace Force. This report has been written to provide contextual details on the widespread and systematic perpetration of forced labour as background to a compendium of 145 order documents sent to villages in Karen State since September 2006, translations of which are included in the appendices below. These order documents have been compiled for submission to the International Labour Organisation's Committee of Experts meeting in September 2007..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Orders Reports (KHRG #2007-02)
    Format/size: pdf (1.54 Mb, 111 pages)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2007/khrg0702.html
    Date of entry/update: 15 November 2009


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


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


    Title: Oppression by proxy in Thaton District
    Date of publication: 21 December 2006
    Description/subject: "With the onset of the cold season the State Peace & Development Council (SPDC) has been able to push ahead with military attacks against villages and displaced communities in the northern districts of Karen State. In Thaton District and other areas further south, however, the military is more firmly in control, fewer displaced communities are able to remain in hiding, and SPDC rule is facilitated by the presence of its ally the Democratic Karen Buddhist Army (DKBA). By increasingly relying on DKBA forces to administer Thaton, the SPDC has been able to free up soldiers and resources which can then be deployed elsewhere. To force the civilian population into submission, the DKBA has scoured villages throughout Thaton - detaining, interrogating and torturing villagers and conscripting them to serve as army porters. Commensurate with its increased control over the civilian population, DKBA soldiers have subjected villagers to regular extortion, arbitrary and excessive 'taxation', forced labour, land confiscation and restrictions on movement, trade and education which all serve to support ongoing military rule in Thaton. By systematising control over local villagers, the SPDC and DKBA have been able to implement 'development' projects that financially benefit and further entrench the military hierarchy. Amongst such initiatives, the construction in Thaton District of the United Nations-supported Asian Highway, connecting Burma with neighbouring countries, has involved uncompensated land confiscation and forced labour..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Field Report (KHRG #2006-F11)
    Format/size: pdf (619 KB)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2006/khrg06f11.html
    Date of entry/update: 08 November 2009


    Title: Toungoo District: The civilian response to human rights violations
    Date of publication: 15 August 2006
    Description/subject: "Attacks on villages in Toungoo and other northern Karen districts by the State Peace and Development Council (SPDC) since late 2005 have led to extensive displacement and some international attention, but little of this has focused on the continuing lives of the villagers involved. In this report KHRG's Karen researchers in the field describe how these attacks have been affecting local people, and how these people have responded. The SPDC's forced relocation, village destruction, shoot-on-sight orders and blockades on the movement of food and medicines have killed many and created pervasive suffering, but the villagers' continued refusal to submit to SPDC authority has caused the military to fail in its objective of bringing the entire civilian population under direct control. This is a struggle which SPDC forces cannot win, but they may never stop trying..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Field Report (KHRG #2006-F8)
    Format/size: pdf (588 KB)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2006/khrg06f8.html
    Date of entry/update: 09 November 2009


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


    Title: Pa'an District: Land confiscation, forced labour and extortion undermining villagers' livelihoods
    Date of publication: 11 February 2006
    Description/subject: "Villagers in northern Pa'an District of central Karen State say their livelihoods are under serious threat due to exploitation by SPDC military authorities and by their Democratic Karen Buddhist Army (DKBA) allies who rule as an SPDC proxy army in much of the region. Villages in the vicinity of the DKBA headquarters are forced to give much of their time and resources to support the headquarters complex, while villages directly under SPDC control face rape, arbitrary detention and threats to keep them compliant with SPDC demands. The SPDC plans to expand Dta Greh (a.k.a. Pain Kyone) village into a town in order to strengthen its administrative control over the area, and is confiscating about half of the village's productive land without compensation to build infrastructure which includes offices, army camps and a hydroelectric power dam - destroying the livelihoods of close to 100 farming families. Local villagers, who are already struggling to survive under the weight of existing demands, fear further forced labour and extortion as the project continues..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Field Report (KHRG #2006-F1)
    Format/size: pfd (739 KB)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2006/khrg06f1.html
    Date of entry/update: 09 November 2009


    Title: SURVIVING IN SHADOW: Widespread Militarization and the Systematic Use of Forced Labour in the Campaign for Control of Thaton District
    Date of publication: 17 January 2006
    Description/subject: " This report examines the situation faced by Karen villagers in Thaton District (known as Doo Tha Htoo in Karen). The district lies in what is officially the northern part of Mon State and also encompasses part of Karen State to the west of the Salween River . Successive Burmese regimes have had strong control over the parts of the district to the west of the Rangoon-Martaban road for many years. They were also able to gain 'defacto' control over the eastern part of the district following the fall of the former Karen National Union (KNU) stronghold at Manerplaw in 1995. The Democratic Karen Buddhist Army (DKBA) is also strong in the district, particularly in the eastern stretches of Pa'an township. Although diminished in recent years, the Karen National Liberation Army (KNLA), the armed wing of the KNU, is still quite active in the district. The villagers in the district have had to contend with all three of these armed groups. The State Peace and Development Council (SPDC) and DKBA demand forced labour, taxes, and extortion money from the villagers while also severely restricting their movements. While the demands for some forms of forced labour such as portering have declined over the past few years, the villagers continue to be regularly called upon by both the SPDC and the DKBA to expand the ever-increasing network of roads throughout the district, as well to fulfil the frequent orders to supply staggering quantities of building materials. A number of new SPDC and DKBA controlled commercial ventures have also appeared in the district in recent years, to which the villagers are also forced to 'contribute' their labour. In 2000, the SPDC confiscated 5,000 acres of land for use as an immense sugarcane plantation, while more recently in late 2004, the SPDC again confiscated another 5,000 acres of the villagers' farmland, all of which is to become a huge rubber plantation, co-owed and operated by Rangoon-based company Max Myanmar. In addition, the villagers are punished for any perceived support for the KNLA or KNU. All such systems of control greatly impoverish the villagers, to the extent that now many of them struggle just to survive. Most villagers have few options but to try to live as best they can. SPDC control of the district is too tight for the villagers to live in hiding in the forest and Thailand is too far for most villagers to flee to. The villagers are forced to answer the demands of the SPDC and DKBA, of which there are many, while trying to avoid punishment for any supposed support of the resistance. They have to balance this with trying to find enough time to work in their fields and find enough food to feed their families. This report provides a detailed analysis of the human rights situation in Thaton District from 2000 to the present. It is based on 216 interviews conducted by KHRG researchers with people in SPDC-controlled villages, in hill villages, in hiding in the forest and with those who have fled to Thailand to become refugees. These interviews are supplemented by SPDC and DKBA order documents selected from the hundreds we have obtained from the area, along with field reports, maps, and photographs taken by KHRG field researchers. All of the interviews were conducted between November 1999 and November 2004. A number of field reports dated up until June 2005 have also been included. The report begins with an Introduction and Executive Summary. The detailed analysis that follows has been broken down into ten main sections. The villagers tell most of the story in the main sections through direct quotes taken from recorded interviews. The full text of the interviews and the field reports upon which this report is based are available from KHRG upon approved request."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 28 January 2006


    Title: Seeing Through the Smoke of Ceasefires
    Date of publication: 09 June 2005
    Description/subject: "Drawing upon recent KHRG reports, this Commentary asks the question why the Karen ceasefire is not generating a human rights dividend for Karen villagers, and looks for the answer in the nature of conflict in Burma. It finds the conflict to be much broader than that between armed entities, pitting villagers against the military junta in a daily struggle for control of their lives. The villagers' role in this struggle is too often ignored, both by outside actors who insist on treating villagers as passive bystanders to their own context, and by activists who seek to subjugate everything to the narrow struggle for an elitist Burmese 'democracy'. Double standards are used to further marginalise rural, agrarian, and non-Burman voices, when the real need now is for these voices to be heard more in political processes. The Commentary also discusses forced labour trends in Karen areas, and the new ways KHRG is documenting the human rights situation..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Right Group Commentaries (KHRG #2005-C1)
    Format/size: pdf (498 KB)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2005/khrg05c1.html
    Date of entry/update: 16 November 2009


    Title: Papun District: Forced Labour, Looting and Road Construction in SPDC-Controlled Areas
    Date of publication: 20 May 2005
    Description/subject: "Villagers in Papun District who live under the control of nearby SPDC army camps are reporting that this year they are doing less forced labour as porters because convict porters are being brought in, and less forced labour repairing roads because much of this work is being done by SPDC soldiers - but that forced labour as unarmed sentries, Army camp servants, logging for the DKBA, and particularly cutting thatch and bamboo to build and repair SPDC and DKBA army camps, are still taking enough of their time to jeopardise their livelihoods. Worse yet, SPDC soldiers doing road work are destroying the villagers' fields and irrigation systems, putting this year's rice crop under serious threat. This has made the villagers deeply angry and frustrated, but any attempts to protest have been met with threats and gun-barrels. With the SPDC now beginning work on new roads and Army camps to secure the construction of massive dams on the Salween River, this situation is only likely to worsen in the near future..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG #2005-F5)
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 23 May 2005


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


    Title: From Prison to Frontline: Portering for SPDC Troops during the Offensive in Eastern Karen State, Burma, September-October 2003.
    Date of publication: January 2005
    Description/subject: "...In November 2003, in the wake of the joint military offensive by the SPDC (State Peace and Development Council) and the DKBA (Democratic Karen Buddhist Army), Burma Issues set about documenting the systematic use of prisoners as porters for military purposes. This practice constitutes an egregious human rights abuse. Research for the project began with interviews with twenty-two escapees who had taken refuge near the Thai-Burma border. We dealt with issues such as their prison lives, their journey to the conflict area, their treatment at the hands of the soldiers, their experiences in battle, and also their experiences relating to landmines. We then proceeded to conduct more in-depth research to supplement this invaluable first hand information. We have compiled the analysis and present our findings in this report..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Burma Issues
    Format/size: pdf (545K - OBL version; 709K - original))
    Alternate URLs: http://www.burmaissues.org/images/stories/pdfreports/from%20prison%20to%20frontline.pdf
    Date of entry/update: 27 June 2005


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


    Title: Eastern Pa'an District: Forced Labour, Food Security and the Consolidation of Control
    Date of publication: 23 March 2004
    Description/subject: "The SPDC and DKBA continued to consolidate their control over Pa'an District in 2003, especially in the mountainous eastern part of the district. Fighting between the SPDC and the DKBA was ongoing up until the ceasefire talks began in December 2003, culminating in an offensive against the KNLA's 7th Brigade headquarters in October. In order to expand their influence DKBA units are actively recruiting in the area. Villagers must also face demands from both the SPDC and the DKBA for forced labour, building materials and extortion money. Fulfilling these demands have left the villagers with little time to work their fields. Many villagers are unable to get enough food to eat, making food security a serious issue in the area..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Field Report (KHRG)
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 09 November 2009


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


    Title: Operation Than L'Yet: Forced Displacement, Massacres and Forced Labour in Dooplaya District
    Date of publication: 25 September 2002
    Description/subject: "In January 2002 it appeared that the SPDC considered most of Dooplaya district of southern Karen State to be pacified and under their control. But then Light Infantry Division 88 was sent in and commenced Operation Than L'Yet, forcibly relocating as many as 60 villages by July. Villagers were rounded up and detained without food for days, or force-marched to Army-controlled relocation sites after their houses were burned. Village heads, women and children were tortured. People who tried to flee into the forests were shot on sight, including one brutal massacre of ten people, six of them children under 15. Over a thousand people fled into Thailand, and several thousand more are still trying. Another five thousand are in Army relocation camps, where they have been provided with nothing and are struggling to survive on rice gruel and whatever roots they can forage. Their movements are tightly controlled and they are being used as forced labour to build roads, bridges and Army camps which will help Division 88 to clamp down further on the district. They are also forced to work as porters for the Army columns which go out to loot and destroy even more villages. KHRG researchers expect a renewed onslaught after the rains end in October, when Division 88 will probably set out to hunt down those still in hiding and may extend the forced relocations to more areas."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Information Update (KHRG #2002-U5)
    Format/size: html (34K)
    Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003


    Title: Forced Labour Orders Since The Ban
    Date of publication: 08 February 2002
    Description/subject: The report includes the direct translations of 453 order documents and letters received by village leaders in Karen State and Pegu Division of Burma. All but a few of them are demands for forced labour issued by State Peace and Development Council (SPDC) military units and local authorities, while the remaining few are letters and notes written by village heads about the forced labour they have been ordered to provide. All of these orders and letters were written and issued after November 1st 2000, which is the date when SPDC Secretary-1 Lt. Gen. Khin Nyunt signed an order prohibiting the further use of forced labour by military and civilian authorities (see Appendix B). The orders translated here carry dates up to November 2001, more than a year after Khin Nyunt’s order was supposedly implemented, and a perusal of all of them shows that there has been no reduction in forced labour in any of the regions covered by this report. Villagers and village heads throughout these regions also consistently testify to KHRG that there has been no reduction in forced labour in their areas, and their testimonies are presented in other KHRG reports. Meanwhile, though the most recent documents translated herein are dated November 2001, similar orders are still being issued and gathered by KHRG..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Orders Reports (KHRG #2002-01)
    Format/size: pdf (1 Mb, 187 pages)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2002/khrg0201.html
    Date of entry/update: 15 November 2009


    Title: Forced Labour Briefing Notes
    Date of publication: 10 February 1998
    Description/subject: "...hese notes list some of the main types of forced labour currently experienced by villagers in most of the main rural Karen areas of Burma, including Karen State, Tenasserim Division, parts of Mon State and Pegu Division, and the Irrawaddy Delta. This list does not include all the types of forced labour, it only tries to give an idea of the main types. For further details on labour conditions and the implementation of this forced labour please see KHRG’s written submission to the ILO Commission of Inquiry dated August 1997. Details and supporting evidence of the situation in each of the areas listed below is available in existing and upcoming KHRG reports. Presently the SPDC is rapidly expanding the concentration of its armed forces in most Karen areas, and the burden of forced labour on all villagers is increasing even more quickly; each Battalion is demanding more and more forced labour of villagers, and the number of these Battalions is also increasing. Several major military offensives have been conducted over the past year, particularly in Dooplaya and Tenasserim, and an offensive is expected soon in Papun District of Karen State. The SPDC has greatly extended its control in Karen areas in the past year, and is continuing on a program to gain complete control over all Karen areas. Forced labour is used both to gain control (as porters, camp labour, etc.) and once control is established (as camp labour, forced labour on roads and other "development", growing cash crops for the military, etc.)..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Right Group (KHRG Articles & Papers)
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 26 November 2009


    Title: Karen Human Rights Group Commentary #95-C4
    Date of publication: 04 August 1995
    Description/subject: "...SLORC continues to show no remorse whatsoever for its continually expanding program of civilian forced labour throughout Burma. Roads, railways, dams, army camps, tourist sites, an international airport, pagodas, schools - virtually everything which is built in rural Burma is now built and maintained with the forced labour of villagers, as well as their money and building materials. Forced labour as porters fuels the SLORC's military campaigns, while forced labour farming land confiscated by the military, digging fishponds, logging and sawing timber for local Battalions fills the pockets of SLORC military officers and SLORC money-laundering front companies such as Union of Myanmar Economic Holdings Ltd. Even farming one's own land is more and more becoming a form of forced labour, as SLORC continues to increase rice quotas which farmers must hand over for pitiful prices. Even after a year like 1994, when record floods destroyed crops in much of the country, the quotas must be paid - if not, the farmer is arrested and the Army takes his land, only to resell it or set up yet another forced labour farm. 1995 has seen very small harvests, increased confiscation and looting of rice and money from the farmers, 40 million people struggling to avoid starvation, and SLORC agreeing to sell a million tonnes of rice to Russia for profit - rice which it has confiscated from village farmers for 50 Kyat a basket, or for nothing..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG #95-C4)
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 22 November 2009


    Title: Karen Human Rights Group Commentary # 94
    Date of publication: 06 June 1994
    Description/subject: "...Just when we think the SLORC already has enough in its inventory of brutality, it amazes us by coming up with even more dirty tricks. Now the regional SLORC commanders have called most of the village heads in Thaton District to a meeting, and informed them that "In the future, for every one of our soldiers who dies we will execute 5 of your villagers." This order appears to have come from Rangoon, and it is a frightening omen of the way SLORC is going. The SLORC's demands for "compensation" from villagers are ever-increasing. Every time they lose a truck to a Karen landmine, they now systematically demand 50,000 Kyat from each of up to 10 or 12 surrounding villages, and 100,000 from the nearest village. One written order from 42 Infantry Battalion states that the next time a truck explodes, they will demand 1 million Kyat, which must be paid within 7 days or all surrounding villages will be burned down - and from then on, villagers will be forced to ride along on all SLORC trucks. Along with the existing heavy burdens of "porter fees" and food looting, villagers are now forced to pay "taxes" on every farm field and on many of their tools such as woodcutting saws. In many villages, every time they boil their sugarcane into jaggery, the SLORC then either comes and confiscates it or "buys" it from them, then forces them to "buy" it back at a much higher price. Soldiers no longer eat their own rations - they force the villagers to buy them at inflated prices, then loot food back from the villagers..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Right Group Commentary (KHRG)
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 22 November 2009


    Title: Karen Human Rights Group Commentary #94, Jan 19
    Date of publication: 16 January 1994
    Description/subject: "...On December 24, 1993, the officers of SLORC No. 301 Burma Regiment ordered the village headmen of Kyo Waing and No Kaneh villages, in Thaton District, to ensure that security is maintained in their respective village tract areas. They were forced to sign papers guaranteeing that if a single bomb explodes or a shot is fired in the entire village tract, they will pay compensation of 50,000 Kyat to SLORC, and if one truck is damaged by a land mine they will pay 100,000 Kyat. What wasn't written on the paper was that these headmen will also pay with their lives and those of several of their villagers. Already the SLORC has shelled defenceless villages with mortars without warning and massacred villagers this year in that area for much lesser "crimes", like "not guarding the road" and "failing to pay protection money when ordered". All this at a time when SLORC delegates are travelling the world talking about the SLORC's "peace initiatives". But what means more - what the SLORC says at the UN, or what it does in Burma? Sadly, many foreign governments are now looking at their wallets and hedging on a decision. They should have a talk with the headmen of Kyo Waing and No Kaneh if they want to learn what "peace initiative" means to the SLORC - or better yet, they should go and try living in those villages for a year. While their governments consider resuming multi-million dollar "development aid" to the SLORC military, about 400 people in Thaton District have died since September from a dysentery epidemic because they had no medicine and no outside aid. The SLORC executes anyone in the area caught with medicine as a "rebel supplier". Aid could have reached them from the Thai border, if it had been sent..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Right Group (KHRG)
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 22 November 2009


  • Non-ILO Reports on forced labour, including forced portering, in Mon State

    Individual Documents

    Title: Land confiscation and the business of human rights abuse in Thaton District
    Date of publication: 02 April 2009
    Description/subject: "While the SPDC and DKBA have both continued to utilise forced labour and extortion as means of financing local operations in Thaton, these two groups have also employed other, separate exploitive practices. The SPDC has confiscated large tracts of land belonging to local villagers and then sold it to the Max Myanmar Company for use in rubber cultivation. The DKBA, for its part, has used forced labour, arbitrarily detained and beaten villages and has also required Thaton villagers to buy calendars and religious photographs of DKBA leaders. This report documents abuses between September 2008 and January 2009..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Field Reports (KHRG #2009-F6)
    Format/size: pdf (602 KB), html
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2009/khrg09f6.html
    Date of entry/update: 31 October 2009


    Title: Villagers responses to forced labour, torture and other demands in Thaton District
    Date of publication: 02 October 2008
    Description/subject: "From February to July 2008, SPDC and DKBA forces operating in Thaton District continued to demand forced labour, extort money and threaten villagers as punishment for allegations that villagers had contacted KNU/KNLA personnel. In addition, the destruction wrought by Cyclone Nargis on Thatons infrastructure and crops has added to the struggles of villagers. Despite such hardships, villagers in these communities continue to test and refine strategies to resist abuse by the SPDC and DKBA. Both local and international humanitarian and development agencies should increase efforts to support these villager-based resistance strategies, enabling villagers to claim their rights..."
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Karen Human Rights Group Field Reports (KHRG #2008-F14)
    Format/size: pdf (573 KB)
    Alternate URLs: http://www.khrg.org/khrg2008/khrg08f14.html
    Date of entry/update: 01 November 2009


  • Non-ILO Reports on forced labour, including forced portering, in Shan State

    Individual Documents

    Title: Shan Human Rights Foundation Monthly Newsletter, December 2012 - forced labour in Shan State
    Date of publication: December 2012
    Description/subject: All the reports in this month’s issue are about the use of unpaid civilian forced labourers, especially as guides and porters, and a few incidents of other violations, committed by Burmese army patrols in rural Shan State during the period from early up to late 2012...... * Commentary: Forced Labour: Forced Portering Continues *Contents *Acronyms *Map *Situation of forced portering in Nam-Zarng *Villagers forced to serve as porters during military operation in Nam-Zarng *Villagers forced to serve as porters after being robbed of their chickens in Nam-Zarng *Routine use of forced labour of civilian guides and porters, and extortion, in Nam-Zarng *Situation of forced portering in Murng-Paeng *Villagers forced to routinely serve as unpaid guides and porters in Murng-Paeng *Frequent forced portering causing a village to become almost deserted in Murng-Paeng *Increased forced portering in Murng-Paeng *Situation of forced portering in other townships *Many days of mass forced portering in Murng-Su and Kae-See *Frequent and lengthy forced portering causing people to flee, in Larng-Khur *Civilian guides forced to carry ammunition in Kun-Hing
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Shan Human Rights Foundation (SHRF)
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 04 January 2013


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


    Title: Shan Human Rights Foundation Monthly Newsletter, September 2012 - forced labour in Shan State
    Date of publication: September 2012
    Description/subject: Themes & Places of Violations reported in this issue... Acronyms:... Map... The use of forced labour in maintaining and building infrastructure and military facilities, and other activities... Routine forced labour in maintaining state property, in Murng-Nai... Mass forced labour used in renovating military base, in Murng-Kerng... Villagers forced to fix and build fences at a military base in Lai-Kha... Villagers forced to make bricks, transport lumber wood, do other routine work, in Kae-See... Villagers forced to build road, in Murng-Paeng... Routine forced labour and extortion continue in Murng-Nai... Villagers forced to clear the sides of a road, in Lai-Kha... Villagers forced to clear the sides of roads in Nam-Zarng... Routine forced labour of civilian vehicles in Murng-Ton... The use of forced labour by Burmese army troops related to government projects... Forced labour and extortion in pipeline area, in Maan-Tong (Nam-Tu)... Forced labour in prospecting activities, in Murng-Kerng
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Shan Human Rights Foundation (SHRF)
    Format/size: html, pdf
    Date of entry/update: 04 January 2013


    Title: Shan Human Rights Foundation Monthly Newsletter, May 2012 - forced labour in Shan State
    Date of publication: May 2012
    Description/subject: This month’s newsletter contains mainly reports on various types of forced labour, and a few cases of beating and extortion, systematically and randomly imposed upon the people by the Burmese military authorities and their cronies in Shan State, that took place during the second half of 2011)..... Commentary: Forced Labour... Contents... Themes & Places of Violations reported in this issue... Acronyms... Map... Situation of forced portering... Villagers forced to serve as porters, village leader beaten, livestock extorted, in Murng-Kerng... Routine forced portering in Murng-Paeng... Random forced portering in Kun-Hing... Mass forced portering in Kae-See... Situation of forced labour in building and maintaining infrastructure... Villagers forced to build fences around military camp in Nam-Zang... Mass forced labour used in clearing the sides of roads in Lai-Kha Villagers forced to fix roads as punishment in Lai-Kha Routine forced labour in Murng-Pan Mass forced labour used in maintaining military camp in Murng-Ton Mass forced labour in building and maintaining military camp in Murng-Nai Mass forced labour used in clearing the sides of roads in Murng-Ton
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Shan Human Rights Foundation (SHRF)
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 08 January 2013


    Title: Shan Human Rights Foundation Monthly Newsletter, November 2011 - forced labour in Shan State
    Date of publication: November 2011
    Description/subject: Commentary: Forced Porterage... The rampant use of civilian porters and stealing of livestock during military operations... Villagers forced to be guides & porters, a cow shot, chickens stolen, a man beaten, in Lai-Kha... Villagers forced to be porters, a pig stolen, chickens extorted, consumer goods forcibly taken, in Murng-Kerng and Kae-See... Villagers conscripted as porters, cow shot and eaten, in Kae-See and Murng-Kerng... The use of porters as protection and conscription of women as porters... Women taken as unpaid porters in lieu of men in Kae-See... Men and women forced to be porters and human shields, in Murng-Su... Villagers forced to carry muskets and be porters in the vanguard, in Murng-Paeng... Townspeople forced to be porters and human shields in Kae-See... Forced porterage, a cause of displacement... Excessive conscription of villagers and their vehicles for porterage causes them to flee, in Si-Paw... The use of peoples animals during military patrols... Villagers and their animals conscripted as unpaid porters, money extorted, in Murng-Pan .
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Shan Human Rights Foundation (SHRF)
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 08 January 2013


    Title: Shan Human Rights Foundation Monthly Newsletter, October 2011 - forced labour in Shan State
    Date of publication: October 2011
    Description/subject: Commentary : Forced Labour... Villagers forced to build a new military camp, lands confiscated, in Nam-Zarng... Villagers forced to build military camp and provide routine forced labour, in Nam-Zarng... People forced to fix roads in Kun-Hing and NamZarng... Villagers forced to clear sides of road in Murng-Sart... Villagers forced to keep watch and work at militarycamp in Lai-Kha... Villagers forced to grow crops and provide other routine forced labour in Murng-Nai... Forced labour and extortion in Murng-Paeng... Forced labour and extortion in Lai-Kha... Forced labour in Murng-Nai... Forced labourers told to say they volunteered, in Kun-Hing... Forced labour of villagers’ vehicles in Murng-Yawng... Forced labour used in military operations in Murng-Paeng.
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Shan groups via Shan Human Rights Foundation (SHRF)
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 08 January 2013


    Title: Shan Human Rights Foundation Monthly Newsletter, June 2011 - forced labour in Shan State
    Date of publication: June 2011
    Description/subject: Commentary: ILO Should Apply More Pressure... Situation of forcible guide service and porterage... Arbitrary arrest, detention and forced porterage in Kae-See... Mass forced porterage in Lai-Kha and Ho-Pong... Villagers forced to serve as guides, livestock and food stuff extorted, in Nam-Zarng... Knowledgeable villagers required to be on standby to serve as guides in Murng-Pan and Larng-Khur... Forced porterage and extortion in Murng-Paeng... Guides forced to be porters in Kae-See... Situation of the use of forced labour in building and maintaining military facilties and state infrastructure... Mass forced labour used in renovation and maintenance of military camps in Lai-Kha... Mass forced labour in fixing and maintaining road in Lai-Kha... Mass forced labour used in fixing military camp and extortion in Lai-Kha... Routine forced labour in road building and extortion in Murng-Paeng... Other types of forced labour and extortion... Civilian tractors forced to transport troops, food extorted, villagers forced to serve as porters, in Ho-Pong... Forced labour of civilian vehicles, extortion of money and conscription of recruits, in Lai-Kha.
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Shan Human Rights Foundation (SHRF)
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 08 January 2013


    Title: Shan Human Rights Foundation Monthly Report, March 2011 - forced labour in Shan State
    Date of publication: March 2011
    Description/subject: Commentary: Forced Labour, Forcible Guide and Porter Services... Villagers forcibly seized and used as unpaid porters in Nam-Zarng... Villagers forced to be on standby for guide and porter service in Kae-See... Commentary: Forced Labour, Forcible Guide and Porter Services... Villagers conscripted as unpaid porters in Nam-Zarng... Villagers forced to serve as unpaid porters in Kae-See... Villagers forcibly seized and used as unpaid porters in Nam-Zarng... Villagers forced to serve as unpaid porters in Kae-See, Kun-Hing and Murng-Su... Villagers forced to serve as unpaid porters in Nam-Zarng.. Villagers forced to serve as unpaid porters in Murng-Kerng... Villagers routinely forced to serve as guides and porters in Larng-Khur... Villagers forced to serve as guides, threatened, money extorted, in Nam-Zarng... Villagers forced to serve as guides and porters in Kun-Hing... Villagers forced to be on standby for guide and porter service in Kae-See.
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Shan Human Rights Foundation (SHRF)
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 08 January 2013


    Title: Shan Human Rights Foundation Monthly Newsletter, February 2011 - forced labour in Shan State
    Date of publication: February 2011
    Description/subject: Commentary : Forced Labour... Situation of forced labour in construction and maintenance of infrastructure... Mass forced labour in road construction in Nam-Zarng... Mass forced labour used in repairing roads, building a military camp, in Lai-Kha and Kae-See... People forced to build fences around lamp posts and pylons in Murng-Nai and Nam-Zarng... People forced to clear the sides of the roads in Lai-Kha... The use of forced labour in agriculture sector... Villagers forced to cultivate dry season rice for military in Murng-Nai... Routine forced labour in physic nut plantations in Kun-Hing... Villagers forced to grow corn for military on their own farm lands in Murng-Nai... People forced to grow hardwood trees for military in Murng-Ton... The use of civilian vehicles in forced labour... Civilian mini-tractors forced to transport military rations and troops in Kaeng Tawng sub-township,in Murng-Nai... Villagers’ motorcycles forcibly used to power communication device in Kun-Hing... Villagers’ ox-carts forcibly conscripted for forced labour in Kae-See.
    Language: English
    Source/publisher: Shan Human Rights Foundation (SHRF)
    Format/size: html
    Date of entry/update: 08 January 2013