Maungdaw, Arakan: Members of the Rohingya community and a section of the authority clashed yesterday at noon, in which three soldiers were seriously injured, a local person said.

The location of the clash was in Balukhali village, Thaychange village tract, under the Burmese border security force, (Nasaka) section number 3, in the northern part of Maungdaw.

Yesterday, three soldiers of the fence controlling group managed and ordered the local people (Rohingya), around, who had been forced to work at the site of the fencing area of Balukhali, without wages day by day. They had been starved and were weak, said a person, who had fled from the site to Bangladesh.

At the site, the soldiers beat the Rohingya workers which angered the Rohingya workers, and then the clash occurred. Three solider were injured, he added. The soldiers were taken to the near Nasaka section number 4, where they will get medical treatment.

The news spread in the area and the local Rohingya villagers started escaping from their village, fearing arrest and torture, a local person from the village, who was hiding in another village said. Continue reading “Maungdaw, Arakan: Members of the Rohingya community and a section of the authority clashed yesterday at noon, in which three soldiers were seriously injured, a local person said.”

PHUKET needs 58,000 more Burmese workers to sustain its construction and fishing industries, a special Parliamentary Commission of Labor was told today.

Phuket Still Hungry for Burmese Workforce
By Chutima Sidasathian
Friday, April 24, 2009
PHUKET needs 58,000 more Burmese workers to sustain its construction and fishing industries, a special Parliamentary Commission of Labor was told today.

The number seems extraordinary but Labor Office acting director Penjan Boonson said segments of the island’s economy were performing strongly despite the global downturn.

About 29,000 Burmese are registered for work on the island, with untold thousands already working illegally.

The 25-person Parliamentary commision is assessing the labor needs province by province around the country so that assessments can be accurately made of local needs.

Nakarin Yosangrat, president of the Construction Association of Phuket, told the Provinical Hall meeting that island construction companies using illegal labor kept their workers in small camps of around 30 families. Continue reading “PHUKET needs 58,000 more Burmese workers to sustain its construction and fishing industries, a special Parliamentary Commission of Labor was told today.”

Human Rights Advocates Urge US Not to Ease Sanctions on Burma

International experts on Burma’s human rights record are urging the Obama administration not to ease economic sanctions on the country’s military rulers as part of a policy review. They say the best way to promote democracy and human rights in Burma is to strengthen the sanctions and encourage other countries to increase pressure on the Burmese leadership.

The panel of experts told a congressional hearing that Washington should maintain pressure on Rangoon in response to what they say are serious continued rights violations by its military rulers. continue
http://www.voanews.com/english/2009-04-24-voa2.cfm

Karen Human Rights field reports-IDP conditions and the rape of a young girl in Papun District-IDP responses to food shortages in Nyaunglebin District

Since the end of December 2008, SPDC
troops active in Nyaunglebin District have
patrolled areas near Internally Displaced
Person (IDP) hiding sites once or twice a
month. Currently, these soldiers are more
active in areas at the bottom of the
mountains—areas which function as a line of
demarcation between the homes of displaced
villagers living in the mountains and those of
villagers currently living under SPDC control
in the flatlands. Although the Burma Army
continues to patrol the mountains of
Nyaunglebin District, the relative decrease in
military activity in some upland areas, where 2009-f7-1mid
the majority of IDPs in hiding reside, marks a
notable shift in military operations from recent
years.

http://www.khrg.org/khrg2009/khrg09f7.pdf

IDP conditions and the rape of a young girl in Papun District

n late 2005/early 2006, the State Peace and Development Council (SPDC, Burma’s ruling junta) began an intensive military offensive in much of Northern Karen State, including Toungoo, Nyaunglebin and Papun Districts. During the offensive, many villagers fled to internally displaced persons (IDP) hiding sites where they could avoid living under SPDC control. These displaced communities have been directly targeted by SPDC soldiers and face many difficulties. One example of the pervasive nature of SPDC abuses against displaced villagers can be found in Lu Thaw Township, Papun District. If Lu Thaw villagers in hiding are found by SPDC troops, they risk being be shot on sight. If their hillside farm fields and food stores are found, the SPDC often burns them down in attempt to drive the villagers into SPDC-controlled areas.

Over the course of the offensive, the SPDC has militarized large swaths of Northern Karen State and, in Lu Thaw Township alone, increased the total number of SPDC Army camps to 46. Although the SPDC Army has withdrawn from 13 of these camps since late 2008, villagers in Lu Thaw still face insecurity in a variety of ways, including a severe food shortage caused by SPDC abuses. SPDC soldiers still based in Lu Thaw Township continue to actively patrol near IDP hiding sites and thereby prevent villagers from accessing both their farm fields and the markets in which they can sell their harvested crops.[1]

http://www.khrg.org/khrg2009/khrg09f8.pdf

dissident harassed in travelling-RFA

NLD ပၝတီဝင္မဵား ခရီးသၾားဴခင္းကို အာဏာပိုင္မဵားက ေႎႀာင့္ယႀက္ေန

2009-04-23
လာမဲ့ ဧ႓ပီလ ၂၈ရက္နဲႛ ၂၉ရက္ေနႛ ပၝတီ႟ံုးခဵႂပ္မႀာ ဴပႂလုပ္မဲ့ NLD ပၝတီ ဴပည္နယ္နဲႛ တိုင္း ႓မိႂႚနယ္ေပၝင္းစံု ေဆၾးေႎၾးပၾဲအတၾက္ နယ္လႀည့္ဖိတ္ဳကားေနတဲ့ ပၝတီဝင္ေတၾကို ေဒသဆိုင္ရာ အာဏာပိုင္ေတၾက တားဆီး ေႎႀာင့္ယႀက္ေနတယ္လိုႛ စံုစမ္းသိရႀိရပၝတယ္။

http://www.rfa.org/burmese/news/dissidents_harassed_in_travelling-04232009132023.html

Burma Expert Urges US to Tighten Sanctions

by Irrawaddy org.

Accusing the Burmese regime of looting the country, a prominent world expert on Burma urged the US on Thursday to tighten its economic sanctions policy against the junta.

Further financial sanctions were necessary to protect Burma against the wholesale theft of its financial and natural resources, Dr Sean Turnell, an Associate Professor of Economics at MacQuarie University in Australia, told a US congressional hearing.

Turnell charged that foreign exchange revenue from Burma’s exports of natural gas were being disposed of offshore in ways that brought about the least advantage to the Burmese people. Continue reading “Burma Expert Urges US to Tighten Sanctions”

Karen Refugee Testifies to Junta Crimes

By LALIT K JHA Friday, April 24, 2009

WASHINGTON—A Karen woman based in the United States on Thursday called on the US Congress and the Obama administration to push the UN Security Council to establish an international inquiry into crimes against humanity committed by Burma’s military junta against its own people.

Giving graphic details of the some of the human rights violations the junta has perpetrated, particularly against ethnic communities and in this case against her and her family, Karen refugee Myra Dahgaypaw told a Congressional committee that the Burmese regime must be held accountable for all the crimes it has committed.

A member of the Karen Women’s Organization and a board member of the Karen American Communities Foundation, Dahgaypaw testified before the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission, which had convened a Congressional hearing on human rights abuses in Burma. Continue reading “Karen Refugee Testifies to Junta Crimes”

Zarganar and imprisoned cyclone helpers in poor health

Apr 24, 2009 (DVB)–Renowned comedian Zarganar, who was sentenced last year to 35 years in prison for speaking to foreign media following cyclone Nargis, is in poor health, said a source close to his family.

The comedian, who was initially sentenced to 59 years after giving reports of the post-cyclone humanitarian situation in Irrawaddy delta, is suffering from a swollen liver and jaundice.
In December 2008 he was transferred to the remote Myitkyina prison in Kachin state, in the country’s far north. On 16 April it is believed he lost consciousness for three hours.
His family has requested the authorities the permission to allow him to receive proper medical treatments.
Meanwhile, the family of Weekly Eleven journal editor, Kyaw Kyaw Thant, who was sentenced last year to two years imprisonment with hard labour after collecting news and assisting victims of the cyclone, also report he is in poor health. Continue reading “Zarganar and imprisoned cyclone helpers in poor health”

monthly report Hurfom:Power through gun barrels: Abuses related to the DKBA offensive in Dooplaya District

April 23, 2009
I. Summary
Since early October 2008, the current military junta and its ally, the Democratic Karen Buddhist Army (DKBA) have been mounting a major military offensive to crush the Karen National Union (KNU) and its armed wing, the Karen National Liberation Army (KNLA). During 1997 and 1998, most of Dooplaya district in central Karen State has been occupied and captured by the joint military offensives of the Burmese Army and DKBA troops. Since then, the military regime has changed its name from the State Law and Order Restoration Council (SLORC) to the State Peace and Development Council (SPDC). However, the oppression has not stopped and instead the occupation troops have continued to extend their control over the Karen villages which have been supporting the KNLA/KNU troops.

Read all http://www.rehmonnya.org/data/Report%20MF-April.pdf

Militarization in ethnic areas obstacle to national reconciliation (HURFOM)

montly comment

April 22, 2009
In order to have control over the different ethnic areas and the non-Burman population, the current military regime had adopted a policy of militarization. What is meant with this militarization policy?
First, the SPDC is deploying more military troops with various battalions and artillery regiments in the areas where the fighting happens and then moved thousands of troops to there. Then they also moved soldiers’ families and created soldiers’ villages. In order to create soldiers’ villages, they confiscate more land.
Secondly, the Burmese Army troops have implemented an assimilation policy through the education and administration sectors. If the ethnic national schools are opened, they will force them to close or arrest ethnic teachers and make many disturbances.
Thirdly, villagers suffer from forced labor and conscription as forced porters. They suffer when the regime builds military barracks, roads and other projects. Then, villagers are forced to guard their own villages.
If peace or national reconciliation is to happen in Burma, the issue of militarization must be addressed. No progress can be made without dealing with past human rights violations and violations against the ethnic people’s economic rights.

http://rehmonnya.org/