Burma Partnership, Strengthening Cooperation for a Free Burma
Signup Now!
Join our mailing list for latest news and information about Burma.

Launch of “Uncertain Ground: Landmine Use in Eastern Burma”

By Karen Human Rights Group  •  May 22, 2012

Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG) today released a major new report documenting the continued challenges posed by widespread use of landmines in eastern Burma and called for urgent humanitarian mine action that addresses the priorities and concerns of communities and builds on their existing strategies in response to the threat of landmines Findings show that landmines were deployed by government and non-state armed groups in all seven KHRG research areas in the past year, and ongoing mine contamination continues to place civilians’ lives and livelihoods at severe risk.

The report Uncertain Ground: Landmine use in eastern Burma focuses on information gathered between January 2011 and May 2012, and includes evidence from a total of 119 oral testimonies, sets of images and other documentation, written and collected by community members trained to monitor human rights conditions where they live. The report highlights some of the strategies employed by villagers facing the threat of landmines, while underlining the need for these strategies to be supplemented and augmented. Local perspectives on landmines are not uniform however, and Uncertain Ground calls attention to the fact that civilians in a small number of cases view landmines as a potential source of protection. In such cases, there is an urgent need for viable alternatives that expand villagers’ self-protection options beyond reliance on the use of mines.

“Villagers are seeking their own solutions to protect themselves, but they are also directly requesting outside support,” said Saw Albert, KHRG’s Field Director. Highlighting the urgency of this issue, villagers in three village tracts in T’Nay Hsah Township, Pa’an District described incidents in which five villagers and 31 animals were killed or injured by mines. In the week before this report was published, a community member sent an urgent message saying that two new landmines had just exploded injuring livestock. Residents of this area have provided their names to KHRG to request immediate mine removal.

“Humanitarian actors must also recognise the interrelated nature of abuse in eastern Burma, and address the fact that landmine removal may facilitate other forms of abuse, where it serves to enable the pursuit of military or economic activities undertaken to the detriment of rural ethnic communities,” says KHRG. “Landmines present added risks to villagers facing other forms of abuse, including forced labour and displacement. This must be taken into account during any discussion of refugee repatriation”. The report offers key findings which will assist local and humanitarian actors to better understand the complex local dynamics and landmine related concerns expressed by villagers, and the protection strategies that they use to address these and other human rights concerns. Humanitarian mine action must be undertaken as soon as possible and must include consultation that accords primacy to the priorities of communities living with the threat of landmines.

Click here to see the report.

The report is also available online at www.khrg.org and hard copies can be obtained by emailing khrg@khrg.org. Print quality photos for inclusion in news articles and video footage of villagers in Karen State are also available on request. About KHRG The Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG) was founded in 1992 and documents the situation of villagers and townspeople in rural Burma through their direct testimonies, supported by photographic and other evidence. KHRG operates independently and is not affiliated with any political or other organisation. Examples of our work can be seen online at www.khrg.org.

For more details of the report, please contact KHRG via e-mail at khrg@khrg.org or by phone at +66 (0) 85-2685519. For interviews in Karen or English please contact Saw Albert on +66 (0) 82- 1625199 and for Burmese contact Saw Poe Zaw on +66 (0) 85- 7332892

Tags: , , , ,

This post is in: Crimes Against Humanity, Press Release

Related Posts
လားရွဴိးၿမိဳ႕နယ္ မိုင္းေယာ္ေဒသခံမ်ားအား သတ္ျဖတ္ခဲ့သည့္ ျမန္မာ့ တပ္မေတာ္၏အၾကမ္းဖက္လုပ္ရပ္ကို ကန္႕ကြက္ရႈတ္ခ်သည့္ သေဘာထားထုတ္ျပန္ခ်က္
2016 Trafficking in Persons Report – BURMA: Tier 3
TRAINED TO TORTURE: Systematic war crimes by the Burma Army in Ta’ang areas of northern Shan State (March 2011 – March 2016)
တကၠသိုလ္ေက်ာင္းသား ဂြမ္ဆိုင္းေအာင္အား၊ အစိုးရစစ္တပ္၏ တပ္သားတစ္ဦးမွ ကခ်င္ျပည္နယ္ ျမစ္ၾကီးနားျမိဳ႕တြင္း၌ ပစ္ခတ္သတ္ျဖတ္ျခင္းအေပၚ ေက်ာင္းသားလူငယ္ထုႏွင့္ အရပ္ဘက္လူမႈအဖြဲ႔အစည္းမ်ား၏ သေဘာထားထုတ္ျပန္ေၾကျငာခ်က္
ေအာင္ေဇယ်ာတပ္ခဲြတြင္ တာ၀န္ထမ္းေဆာင္ေနေသာ ဗုိလ္ၾကီးတဦးမွ အမ်ိဳးသမီးတဦး၏ ရင္ဘတ္ႏွင့္ နားထင္ကုိ ေသနတ္ျဖင့္ ေၾကိမ္းၾကိမ္ေထာက္ခါ ပစ္ခတ္ရန္ခ်ိန္းေျခာက္မႈႏွင့္ ပတ္သက္၍ ကူကီအမ်ိဳးသမီးစင္တာမွ သေဘာထားထုတ္ျပန္ေၾကညာခ်က္