Tuesday, May 19, 2009

No end in sight after 4 years of obligatory security detail by villagers

By Kon Hadae, IMNA
Kapya-wa villagers continue to provide forced security detail for LIB No. 31 troops.

The Burmese SPDC troops from Light Infantry Battalion No. 31, are still forcing people from Kapya-wa village, Southern Ye township Mon state, to provide security for them day and night, to ward off Mon rebel group attacks. The rebel group, Mon Rebuilding Party (MRP) primarily operates out of the region.

The villagers have had to work on a rotational duty for guarding the soldiers. For a period of a month at a time, each family must provide one person to the pool of guards for the SPDC forces. If some one is unable to meet the requirement they must give LIB No.31 5,000 kyat to hire someone who can fill their place, explained a villager from the area.

“They (LIB No. 31) do not care whether villagers have money or not. If we cannot fill our guarding duty, we have to give them 5,000 kyat”, a villager said. Though many villagers agree the policy of forced patrols for soldiers without compensation is unfair, even the village headman must remain silent as dissent is punished with beatings.

“First hand, I’ve seen a young man beaten by a solider because, talking to himself, he said that this guarding duty was crazy for villagers and unfair. But the soldier overheard what he said and called the young man over and beat him a lot”, a source told IMNA, who spoke with a villager that had witnessed the beating.

Troops from LIB No. 31force the villagers to perform guard duty so that the villagers essentially become a human shield protecting against MRP assault, according to a resident.

“If something happens at the army camp, such as weapons goes missing, or a soldier is killed by the Mon rebel etc., the villagers on duty will be executed.” said a villager who fled the village out of fear of the SPDC forces.

“In some ways we can say we are lucky at this point. Women are not included in guarding duty - only men have to guard the soldiers,” said a woman who had fled the village to Thailand. “Three years ago women had to go to the army camp to prepare food and make the beds for the army officers. At that time, some women were raped by the army officers. So many families who were afraid of army fled the village. Some went to Thailand and some moved to another village for safety.”

According to a WCRP (Woman and Child Rights Project) report, which was published in 2005 July, in 2003, No. 3 Tactical Command led by Brigadier Myo Win, ordered women from 15 villages in Southern Ye township to come army camp to put on a fashion show.

SPDC soldiers have been forcing the villagers from southern townships to provide security since 2005, according to Nai Aue Mon, coordinator of HRDDP (Human Rights Documentation and Dissemination Project).

Villagers have faced a variety of oppressive tactics regionally, yet want to return to their own villages to continue working their plantations and rice paddies. However they dare not out of fear of the SPDC policies.

Recent Posts from Burma Wants Freedom and Democracy

Recent posts from WHO is WHO in Burma


The Nuke Light of Myanmar Fan Box
The Nuke Light of Myanmar on Facebook
Promote your Page too