Karen Human Rights Field Report 13.1.2009 Rural development and displacement: SPDC abuses in Toungoo District

The SPDC has continued to militarise larger and larger swaths of Toungoo District under the false banner of ‘development’, subjecting local villagers to forced labour and extortion and forcing others to flee into hiding. Life is hard for villagers both under and outside of SPDC control: villagers living within SPDC-controlled areas are often forced to work for the SPDC rather than focus on their own livelihoods while villagers in hiding continue to struggle with a shortage of food. Ultimately, many residents of Toungoo face a mounting food crisis that is a direct result of SPDC policy. This report discusses incidents that occurred between May and September 2008. Since early 2008, the State Peace and Development Council (SPDC) has made a concerted effort to expand its control over Kler La and other areas of Toungoo District, Karen State. The SPDC’s militarisation campaign has involved myriad abuses, including the conscription of local villagers into forced labour and restricting villagers’ movements around the region. Life is equally hard for villagers who choose to live in hiding and outside of SPDC control. Life in hiding is a constant struggle as villagers try to maintain their livelihoods and grow enough food to eat while evading Burma Army forces. Please read the report http://www.khrg.org/khrg2009/khrg09f1.html

or download http://www.khrg.org/khrg2009/khrg09f1.pdf

“We didn’t have a chance to do our work, because they [the SPDC] didn’t allow us to go outside the village. So we just stay in our village. The military is based in Kler La, Wah Tho Ko and Gkaw Tha Koh – not in my village. We couldn’t leave the village for almost 3 weeks… We didn’t know what happened to our cardamom fields.”
fences around village
fences around village

One thought on “Karen Human Rights Field Report 13.1.2009 Rural development and displacement: SPDC abuses in Toungoo District

  1. Pingback: Burma Army ABUSES KAREN and KARENNI STATES FBR REPORT « democracy for burma

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