|Monday, 17 October 2011 20:54|
The Burma Army detained 20 residents of Myitkyina, the capital of Kachin State, on October 16, as porters, residents said.
They were detained on the roads at night, between 7 p.m. and 8 p.m., in the two Kachin quarters, Manhkring and Shwezet, by P.L.N (Myitkyina)-based Infantry Battalion (IB) No. 29, according to sources close to the detainees.
Earlier, a car carrying troops from IB No. 29 went to the administrators of the two quarters and demanded to collect 50 persons from each quarter to work as porters for the military, according to residents.
A convoy of government troops was denied permission to collect the quota of porters by administrators in the two quarters, said residents.
Eventually however, officials from the two quarters allowed government troops to collect porters from only one road, after soldiers threatened to collect porters house to house, said officials.
Government troops are forcibly detaining people to work as porters in other Kachin dominated quarters, including Shatapru, Tatkone, Du Kahtawng, and Waingmaw Town opposite Myitkyina, residents said.
A resident of Myitkyina told the Kachin News Group, “Burmese soldiers are mainly detaining Kachin nationals as porters. They have to wear Burma Army uniforms and take the government troops to the frontlines to fight against fellow Kachins in the Kachin Independence Army (KIA).”
Some porters have to carry weapons and ammunition to the frontlines for government troops.
It is not unusual that local Kachin nationals are detained as porters since the Burmese government started a new civil war against the KIA in Kachin State and in Northern Shan State on June 9, according to people in the two states. The KNG News
Ko Zaya Thaw, a founding leader of the organization, who is also a singer and a politician, said the simple celebration with a reception was held at Thirimingala Yan Aung Temple in San Chaung Township of Rangoon. The ceremony was attended by as many as 200 people, including activists from the political and the art communities.
The short ceremony went from nine in the morning to 12noon. U Win Tin, an executive member of the National League for Democracy and Yan Yan Chan, a well know singer were among the attendees.
Yan Yan Chan said that he attended the ceremony to honor the youth group, Generation Wave, who are working for the benefit of the country.
“I am not an official member of this organization, but I am a childhood friend with these guys. I believe they are working for our country and not doing negative or bad things. I am here to honor their fourth birthday.”
Generation Wave was founded on October 9, 2007 with the objective of creating a peaceful society that valued freedom, fairness and gave its citizens a higher standard of living. Generation Wave’s founding leader, Zaya Thaw was jail edin March 2008 for his political beliefs and activities, but was released three years later on March 2011 from Kawthoung Prison in an amnesty granted by President Thein Sein and leader of the current ruling party, Union Solidarity and Development Party. At the time, exile opposition groups, international human right groups and the international community criticized the amnesty as a stunt by the military backed civilian government. kic news 14.october 2011