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Press release by the communities in Shan State marking the International Day of Action for Rivers and Against Dams

By Action for Shan State Rivers  •  March 13, 2015

The communities in Shan State urge halt to large dams amid escalating conflict    

The communities in Shan State are holding a press conference today in Taunggyi, Southern Shan State to urge the Burmese government and foreign investors to immediately stop plans to build large dams on rivers in Shan state, where conflict is escalating.

Out of 43 large dams planned in Burma, over half will be built on rivers in Shan State, including four on the Salween and its Nam Ma tributary. Among numerous social and environmental concerns raised by Shan groups is the fact that most dams lie in conflict-affected areas, including the Kunlong dam on the Salween in the Kokang region, where heavy fighting has broken out since early February, displacing up to 100,000.

Despite forced suspension of dam construction at Kunlong, foreign developers are pushing ahead with plans for the giant Mongton /Tasang dam on the Salween in southern Shan State, amid areas under the control of Shan and Wa armies. On March 10, Chinese, Thai and Burmese companies held their first public consultation in Taunggyi in preparation for the dam.

“Even as conflict sabotages one Salween dam, Chinese and Thai developers are pushing ahead with another,” said “Don’t they realize the risks of building dams in war-zones?”

The Mongton/Tasang dam is a joint venture between Thailand’s EGAT International and China’s Sinohydro and Three Gorges Corporation. 90% of the 7,000 megawatts of electricity produced will be sold to Thailand or China.

The communities in Shan State are also urging the political parties in Shan State and armed groups to support their calls for a halt to all large dams in Shan State.

For more information, please contact actionforrivers@gmail.com, or visit website.http://www.shanhumanrights.org/

Media contact:

Ko Nay Myo : (+95 (0) 9522 8275)

Nang Kham Nong: (+95 (0) 9428 3678 49)

Sai Khur Hseng: (+95 (0)94 282 06916)

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This post is in: Press Release

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