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Issue No. 81, 2004
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Mon State at War  

A HUNDRED FAMILIES FLED TO MON RESETTLEMENT CAMP

(Nai Ong  Mon and Taramon: January 26, 2005)

Sangkhalaburi -- About a hundred families fled to Mon resettlement camp near Thai Burma border during this month after their homes were destroyed by Burma Army, Mon Relief and Development Committee reported.

The majority of newly arrived IDPs (Internally Displaced Persons) are from Pauk Pinkwin (Wae Kwao), Ma Kyi (Mang Glong) and Hoay Kyar villages of southern Ye and Yebyu Townships after some houses were uprooted by the Burma Army.

My house and other six were destroyed and burnt down, Mi Doot, an old woman who recently arrived to the camp claimed. Another woman also said that ten houses from her track were uprooted by the aggressive Infantry Battalion during military operation to wipe out Mon armed group.

The Army accused local villagers as rebel supporters and took their furniture and wood to the military camps before they burned the houses, a member of Mon Relief and Development Committee told Kaowao.

Many houses were built in traditional style several years ago with strong hard wood, they brought furniture and wood to the military base before burning our house, the family who temporarily arrived at the camp said.

Some porters are used to carry ammunitions and food for the army.  Chairman of Hle-Seik (Hnaek Kwi) and other village headmen were ordered to provide porters for the LIB 408 led by Captain Nyi Nyi Htwe.

The local villagers also have to purchase daily ticket (travel allowance) to work in their farms and plantations.  Civilians from Southern Ye are suffering from brutal human right violations and oppression by the Burma Army under the name of military offensive to annihilate the Mon armed group led by Nai Hloin and Nai Bin.  The insurgents in turn use ambush tactics and guerrilla warfare.  Conflict between the groups has been raging now for about (8) years and local villagers are being driven out of their homes.

Currently, Light Infantry Battalion No. 408, 304, and 309 are in charged of operation in northern Yebyu and Infantry Battalion No. 31 is on duty in southern Ye site. 


YOUNG GIRLS EXPLOITED FOR SEX

(Banyear Taoy: January 24, 2005)

Many prostitutes working in Mon state are under the age of 18, reported business community from the capital of Mon State, Moulmein.

I think about 30 percent of them are children; we can tell how old they are by looking at their faces, said a businessman who often visits places for sex and drinking.  He added that in Ye Township alone, there are over ten brothels, each of which approximately has about 8 prostitutes working in there and men can easily buy alcohol and sex at a cost of 5-10 dollars (5,000-10,000 Kyats). 

A bus driver from Mudon said some brothels are operated in co-operation with local authorities and the Burma Army.  Customers who order drinks in the shop have taken opportunities of touching the girls while being served.  The young girls have to follow the wishes of their customers, if they refuse the drunken men who approach them for sex, they could lose their jobs and vehicles.

Another Mon businessman who has a good relationship with local Burma Army commanders said that soldiers expect free sex when they visit the brothels. The commanders get free sex because these young women worry about losing their business if they refuse.  They are afraid of being arrested and their vehicles will be seized because they have no licenses.

According to a youth leader from Thanbyu Zayat (ZopBu), there is a joke about a new threat to the prostitutes, who are exploited for sex.  The young girls were told that they would be arrested if they dont give free sex to the Army officers because they have no permission to own cars without licenses.

Nai Win (not his real name), a community leader, said that some men do not use condoms when they get drunk.  The owners of brothel bars pay bribes to the local authorities on a monthly basis.


WANTED REBEL POSTERS ON SALE

(Nai Ong Mon, January 8, 2005)

Posters, that announced Burma Army will pay up to 10 million Kyats for information leading to the capture of Mon guerrilla leader, are on sale in northern Ye Byu Township.

Nai Thaw, a Mon community leader from the area said the Burma Army ordered every family to buy the posters of wanted Mon guerilla leaders, each worth 700 Kyats (Burmese currency).

The villagers must obey the order and every household must buy 3 posters of their (Burma Army) wanted men and post them in home or risk being tortured, said Nai Thaw.

The poster stated that anyone who can provide information leading to the guerrilla leader Nai Bins whereabouts or who can bring him in will be awarded with the money.  Second leader Nai Hloin and other leaders, Nai Chan Dein and Nai Sook Gloing each have one million put on their heads. 

Following this order, local villagers are caught in the middle because the guerrilla group has also threatened them not to follow the Burma Armys instructions.  The threat from both sides has forced them to flee the area gradually.  Some have fled to a Mon resettlement site as internally displaced person (IDP) and some sneaked to Thailand, according to Mon Relief and Development Committee, based in Sangkhalaburi, Thai Burma border.  A village headman said some villagers have also moved to a religious site in northern Ye township where (they believe) a famous Buddhist monk can give them protection.

According to a source from the area, about 50 Mon guerillas who had survived a heavy military offensive by Aung Moe Gyo Operation No. (3) surrendered to the New Mon State Party.  There is a rumor that Nai Hloin, the second leader of the group who was wounded wants to surrender to the NMSP, but his younger brother, Nai Bin has threatened to kill him if he does.

The Burma Army has launched an offensive to wipe out the Mon armed group and the insurgents in turn use ambush tactics and guerrilla warfare.

                                           Copyright пїЅ 2004, Kaowao.org. All Rights Reserved.
                                         Saimon

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