Friday, July 24, 2009

Burmese military demands food supplies under DKBA name

Burmese military demands food supplies using DKBA name

HURFOM (Rehmonnya): In a internal document issued on July 19th 2009, the Burmese military Southeast Command (SEC) instructed Tactical Command No.1 based in the Anankwin, Three Pagoda township to force household to give two baskets of rice and other vegetables (1basket equal to 32 Kg) to military forces. If a household does not have the rice to meet the demands, the military will take 10,000 kyat.

While it was not ordered in the document, as an additional threat military forces have been telling villagers if they cannot afford to pay they will be forced to work as porters instead. SPDC forces have been collecting food supplies from Anankwin, Taung Son, Ko Du Kwe, Khone Khen, Tanpayar, Laypoe and Lone Si villages. For many the loss of these supplies had produced many economic difficulties.

“I already gave them 2 baskets of rice. Now, I have nothing left in my house. If you can’t afford two baskets of rice you need to pay 10,000 Kyat,” according to a 45 year-old Anankwin villager. “But, if you can (not) afford to pay with rice or money, they will force you to serve as a porter. Now, I need to work hard and replenish my rice for this rainy season.”

He added, “On that day, the SPDC soldiers collected rice and other food supplies from about 90 households in Taung Son village.”

28 years old Ko Du Kwe villager Saw Mann Lay (not real name) said, “In our village Meh Pra (locally known as Ko Du Kwe), over 50 households have had to pay rice and food supplies. But we don’t know yet what will happen with the villagers who can’t afford to pay either money or rice. If they can’t, our village has to support them. We don’t have any other way; either some villagers help them to give supplies to the military, or they will be serving in the porter service.”

HURFOM received a copy of the military telegram order that came from the SEC to Tactical Command No.1 in Anankwin. The orders specifically advise that SPDC forces who are gathering food should tell villagers the supplies will be used to support the DKBA soldiers led by the Saw Lel Bwe, who are advancing towards KNLA brigade No.6 territory.

HURFOM also interviewed the DKBA liaison officer in Three Pagoda Town, “We have not commanded troops to collect food supplies from the villager. Also, we never allowed our troops to collect food supplies from the villager.

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