|FBR Relief Mission: LAHU Free Burma Rangers Relief Mission JUNE 2003
|Shan State, Burma
|3 June, 2003
Villagers forced to be Wa soldiers by the SPDC and UWSA.
On June 5, 2003, Tak Mar UWSA-171 (based in Nakawngmu village, Mongton Township ) and Col- Soe Thiang (Burma Army) made an agreement and ordered the villagers as follows. They ordered the young boys (above 15 years old) who are living Mongton areas to enter to the UWSA. They want 4,000 people to become Wa soldiers. So they forcibly collected the villagers. The Wa army said, They will be commandos for the UWSA and SPDC. Thus, the villagers worry about being forced to join the army and they do not want to be Wa soldiers.
In a similar instance, UWSA forcibly collected the villagers for UWSA soldiers from Hon Par village, Mong Hsat Township. There are 140 families are living there. They moved from Lashio northern Shan State.
Khin Nyut sold the Mong Ton Areas to the UWSA for US$ 2 Million.
On March 5,2003, UWSA 171 forcibly occupied 42 houses and the paddy lands 1000 EK at Nam Yoom village, Mong Ton Township. The villagers requested payment for the houses and paddy lands. The UWSA paid only 100,000 baht for all the houses and the paddy lands. The Wa Army said, We already bought that land from Khin Nyut. So we do not need to pay for them again. Within the last year, Khin Nyut (G .S-1) sold the Mongton areas to the UWSA for U S $ 2 million. None of the villagers were satisfied with that, but they could not do anything to the UWSA. The Wa army started building and living in that village. Thus, most of the villagers fled to Mongton and Mong Ssat because Wa army do not allow them to stay there. The Wa army said, If the villagers want to live in that village, they must enter the UWSA. Namyoom village based in Thai-Burma border, near BP-1, and it is a good place to trade especially drugs. So, UWSA wanted very much to have that village under their control.
Burma Army shot and killed villagers (including two children) in NaKawngMu village.
On May18, 2003, the Shan State Army (SSA) shot at the Burma Army based in Mong Ham, MongTon area. Then, the Burma Army accused the SSA and villagers of staying together in Nakawngmu village. After the accusation, the Burma Army shot at NaKawngMu village with a MM-81. Some houses were destroyed and 2 children (the girl was about 8 years old and the boy was about 14 years old) were hit by the shots and died on that day. Some other villagers were injured. Some villagers fled to Mong Hsat, Mongton and Tachilake. Now, the UWSA are living in NaKawngMu village.
The Burma Army are producers of Heroin and Yaba Pills.
On February 1, 2003, the Burma Army IB-226 and LIB-224 established (set up) a Heroin factory based in Loi Mwe Township. That factory is located 2 kilometers from the military (Burma Army). They are manufacturing Heroin and methamphetamines (or Yaba pills). After manufacturing the drugs, they carry them from Loi Mwe to Nat Lin Taung village, Mong Pyat Township, Tachilake and Laos. They get raw materials to produce heroin and yaba from the Chinese- KoKang.
The Burma Army seize Heroin and yaba and then resell the drugs.
On April 24, 2003, LawShinMe, Kokang (who is LawShinHan’s younger brother) and Col- Kyaw Than (Burma Army) combined forces and manufactured Heroin and Yaba pills. The Burma military intelligence – 24 based in MongTon and special Burma Army police troops occupied the factory and seized the following items:
1. A Thai Bank Account
2. Methamphetamine or Yaba – 70 units.
3. Opium- -200 vis (1 kilograms =0.6 vis)
4. Heroin -120 kilograms
6. Gold – 4 vis
7. Houses -22
8. Arrested – 18 people.
9. Leader Sai Yi, Hla Aung
Then, Col-Soe Thiang (Burma Army) took the Heroin and Yaba and then he sold it to buyers in the Fang Area of northern Thailand.
On January 1, 2003, the Burma Army and the Chinese- Kokang combined forces and set up a factory to produce Heroin and Yaba which is based in Mong Zin village, Keng Tun Township (beside the Keng Tun – Tachilake road). They manufactured Heroin and Yaba, and then they sold in to buyers in Tachilake, Mong Hsat, Mong Ton, Nakawmu and Thailand.
Khun Nyut lies to the world.
On May 15, 2003, when Khin Nyut (GS-1) came to Shan State, he went to Hopan agriculture garden, which is based in Tachilade and Mong Hsat. He took photographs with a video camera. He then announced they are doing agriculture and livestock in order to develop the province. Khin Nyut lied to the world.
The Burma Army forcibly occupies villagers’ farms and forced relocation.
On May 29, 2003, the Burma Army LI-333 forcibly occupied villagers’ farms in Nao Pha village, Mong Hsat Township. The villagers had planted mango trees on the farm. After the Burma Army occupied those farms, if the villagers wanted to eat mango, the soldiers forced them to pay 300 kyat for each mango to the Burma Army. In August 1987, the same village (Nao Pha village) was forced to relocate by the Burma Army. The Burma Army soldiers stole the villagers’ pigs, chickens, cows, buffalo, vegetables and other possessions whenever they felt like it. The villagers cannot do anything to them.
On April 30, 2003, the commanding officer (Burma Army LIB-65) based in Mong Hsat took forced laborers to repair Mong Hsat airport. He called villagers from the following villages,
1. Kyar Deh Area.
2. Mong Nin Area.
3. Moe Saw Area.
4. Mae Sak Area
5. Mae Sat Tao Area.
The Burma Army forced one person from each family to come and repair the Mong Hsat airport. Some villagers could not come to repair the airport. The Burma Army fined 5,000 kyat for each family. When the villagers could not pay that amount they had to stay in the police station (a pig sty) for 3 days. Later, they were forced to labour by the police. They had to work by cleaning, surrounding the police compound with a fence and then the police released the villagers.
The Burma Army allows production of Yaba and Heroin.
On June 4, 2003, the Burma Army LI-519, LIB-65 and Col- Soe Thiang said to the villagers, ‘If you want to manufacture Yaba or methamphetamines and Heroin, you should buy the arms. After that you can make an agreement and surrender to us. Then you can set up the factories and manufacture drugs as you like.’
A brief Life History of Colonel Kyar Law Bon (UWSA-171)
How drugs became a problem in the Mong Ton Area, Eastern Shan States.
Name – Kyar Law Bon
Age – About 50 yrs old.
High – 5
Native village – Mong Sheh village, Mong Paing Township.
Parents – Names unknown
Nationality – Lahu (Kun Lao)
Religion – Animist
Entered the UWSA 1978.
Current Position – Colonel (or) Brigade Commander of UWSA 171.
Main objectives – Brigade Commander of UWSA-171.
– Deputy of Wei Hsuik Kang’s business coordinator in southern part.
– Manufacturer of Heroin and Methamphetamines (or Yaba).
– Ruler of Wa military and locality.
Drug Problems in Mongton Area.
Kyar Law Bon combined forces with Aik Tun, Tak Mar, Yang Day, Aik Lon and Pi Kwet ( or ) Kyar Bon Shin (or) Khin Maung Thing in order to levy taxes from opium merchants and heroin manufacturers who are in their areas. They focused especially on Doi Lang or Loi Lang, Nong Than Line, BP 1, Loi Htwe , Mong Jawd, and Khiang Lon areas.
When he can get the raw materials to produced heroin and methamphetamines (or Yaba), he manufactures and sells those drugs. He commands his armed troops but also is manufacturer and seller of drugs. He collects taxes from other groups and his group also manufactures Heroin. His group forcibly occupied a Heroin factory. Those factory owners already paid taxes and received a permit from Kyar Law Bon. After he attacked and occupied that factory, he declared his could dismayed to the world.
Then Kyar Law Bon made an agreement with San Yin who is Chinese – Kokang. They set up (established) a heroin factory and manufactured, near Mong Jawd village, Mong Tong Township. After three months of manufacturing (and 3 days before finishing the job), Kyar Law Bon took 300 soldiers serving in the UWSA -171 and attacked and occupied that factory. They accused Kya Nu (the Lahu militia leader) from Mong Jawd village of doing this. They burnt the whole Lahu village. Seven villagers (included 2 women and a child) were killed by the UWSA. The cut the body of the child (about 5 years old) and her mother was cut on her neck by the soldiers’ knives. Following is a list of those who died in this attack.
Name Age Sex Marital Status Children
1. Shin Mon 27 male married 2
2. Kyar Ui Sheh 35 male married 2
3. Kyar Ye 19 male single
4. Kyar Day 27 male married 1
5. Kyar Ui Sheh’s wife 33 female married 2
6. Lu me 30 female married 2
7. Kyar Ui Sheh’s child 5 female – –
Later, the UWSA troops took 41 people (including women and children) and turned them over to the Burma Army military intelligence -24, base in Tachilake. After they released some of the villagers, 9 people were put in Keng Tun prison. Then the Wa Army declared they could attack and success of taking over a heroin factory to the world. I would like to mention Kyar Law Bon and his companions’ names and addresses as follow,-
1. Kya Law Bon- Colonel of UWSA-171. He lives in Hwe Aw village and Khai Lon village, Mong Tong Township.
2. Aik Tun-: Commanding officer of UWSA. 103 he lives in Mong Jawd village, Mongtong Township.
3. Tak Mar -: Commanding officer of UWSA-107. He lives in Khai Lon village, Mongtong Township.
4. Yang Day-: He lives in Kyar Deh village, Mong Hsat Township.
5. Aik Lon-: Lahu militia leader. He lives in Mong Hsat (near Airport).
6. Pin Kwet (or) Kyar Bon Shin (or) Khin Maung Thiang-: He is a Lahu militia leader of NaKawngMu village. He lives in Hwe Aw village, Mongton Township. He has a Thai Citizen Card.
They have combined their forces and act as security for opium merchants and methamphetamine manufacturers in Mong Hsat, Mongton and along the Thai-Burma border. They also buy and sell drugs.
This group assists Wei Hsuek Kang and has seven hundred in their combined military forces. Wei Hsuek Kang was commander of a military region at southern part of Eastern Shan state. He disappeared on 2001. Then, Wei Hsuek Kang appointed Kya Law Bon to take responsibility for his place (Southern Part). Kyar Law Bon chose the people he needed to complete his troop force. Then, he established a group to manufacture and sell drugs. Most of the Heroin and methamphetamines from this group go into Chiang Rai, Chiang Mai and Mae Hong Song districts.
This group is supported and protected by the Burma Army Infantry Battalion ( IB) 65, light Infantry battalion (LIB)-519 base in Mongton, and IB-49, LIB(333) base in Mong Hsat.
Lahu IDP Mission Report June 2003 Eastern Shan State, Burma.
Mission conducted by Lahu relief team, FBR:
This report covers five rape cases where Burma Army soldiers raped villagers and IDPs, cases of murdered children and parents as well as reports of forced labor, torture and other human rights violations in the Shan State of Burma.
The Lahu relief team traveled along the Thai- Burma border in to Chiang Mai district and Chiang Dao township from June 1 to 7 to visit Lahu Villages. All of them were refugee Villages. We gave medicine and talked about education.
Sometimes narcotics cross into this district from Burma.
Inside Burma, the IDP Situation.
On April 30th,2003, the Burma Army and “Wa” Army combined and conducted a drug suppression operation. The Burma Army and Wa army entered Lahu and Shan villages and killed 7 people. One of the seven people was a five-year-old baby whom they killed. The troops cut the child into two parts, killing him and then threw his body away. They also cut his mother’s neck and killed her too.
So the villagers became very afraid and ran away. There were a total of seventeen families of La Hu village, now they are IDPs at MineSat district.
We gave medicince and other relief supplies.
Near the gate of Burma- Thai border, BP I , 7th Km from Naung Cho village there are Lah Hu villagers who have been IDPs since 2002.
In 2001, Burma Army Battalions No.224, BN No.35 and 309, entered the township of MaiKun and were planning to make the town bigger. So they took land from the people, reduced the lots and sold them back at a price of one unit for 8000 kyats to 12000 kyats.
At Kyaindone district and Maikun district there are many Lahu, Kachin and Lisu villages. The Burma Army has stolen Pigs, Chickens, Food and whatever they want. Some of the villagers were forced to become porters and were treated brutally by the Burma Army.
People are forced to sell the Paddy rice to the Burma Army.
1. Name XXXX
Age 26 years
Adds: Cunesine- an Ahka Village
Date of Rape August 2002
Burma Army Unit Burma Army, 4th Chin rifles
Name Myint Aung
The mother and her daughter came from Kyintone Market and when they arrive at the way side two of Burmese soldiers take her daughter. One closed her mouth not to shout. They raped one after and another one. They made the mother and daughter afraid and ordered them, “Don’t tell anyone.”
2. Name XXXX
Age 27 years
Adds: Won Yut, Mai Young, Shan Village
Rape December 2002
Burma Army Unit LIB (334) Co.3,Capt: Aung Hkaing
When 20.12.2002 one of the Burmese soldiers came to her house and forced her to go outside the village and then raped her. As a result of this she had problems in her family and her husband divorced her and now she is at Maiyoung town and is a worker in a restaurant.
3. Name XXXX
Age 19 years
Ethnicity Lah Hu
Adds: Panlee village
Burma Army Maicune Army
Name Ye Lwin (Rifle man)
A widowed mother and her daughter went to cut wood for Christmas in the forest on 27.12.2002. Burma Army soldier, Saw Lwin and his friend saw them and raped the daughter in front of her mother one after one. XXXX was 8 standard pupil. Now she was very depressed has become mental patient. Her widow mother told them with tears and heart broken.
4. Name XXXX
Age 18 years
Ethnicity Lah Hu
Work 10 standard (student)
Adds: Mine Pyin, Lah Hu Compound
Burma Army UnitMine Pyin Riflemen
Name Myint Naing
At 1.15.2003, XXXX went to her school early morning on the bicycle. When she arrived at the check point of Mine Pyin, a soldier of the Burma Army, Myit Naing, raped her at the tent of the gate. She was a 10th standard high school student but can’t to go to school now because of the rape. She can’t sit for the exam for the 10th standard.
5. Name XXXX
Age 15 years
Ethnicity Lah Hu
Adds: Mine Pyin, Lah Hu Village
Burma Army UnitMine Pyin Army.
At 5th February 2003, when XXXX’s mother and brother went to the fields, 20 Burmese soldiers came to her village and then left in the evening. But when her mother and brother came home they don’t see XXXX. When they did find her she was dead. They found XXXX’s dead body in the barn. She had been raped and murdered by the visiting Burma Army troops.
(c) Unfair working practice and Untrue Marriage
At KyineTone district there are many Chinese who have come for business. They are given special privileges. In the factory the staff members are Chinese but the local workers are Shan and are not promoted.
Here the Wa Army gives “Wa” soldiers a car, money and make some of them look like officers. This results in Shan girls agreeing to marry them, then the Wa army takes all of the car and money and the Wa soldier reverts to being a private and a rifleman and the untrue marriage is now exposed.
When the Shan girls want to go away they are forced to stay.
(e)Women under 25 years old not allowed to come to the border gate.
At Mine Has, Mine Tone, Tachilake, Mine Pya gate the army never give permits to the women under 25 years old. But rich families are exempted and their girls and the army children can go with special card. The Burmese female worker has to pay 50,000 Kyats to a driver to enter Thailand. The women in our country have no freedom.
(f)Without pay young girls have to give entertainment.
In eastern Shan State many towns celebrate the water festival. School, college and department girls are forced to dance and practice before the water festival. They are forced to do the things that they don’t want to do.
They have no freedom for their New Year Festival and they must also entertain Burma Army officers as they like.
(g)Health of the women
Now many towns of Shan state have opened Karaoke bars, restaurants and brothels. These are places where people can earn money easily and they sell their bodies for money.
So, the girls who work in these places get HIV and AIDS. Maybe 65% of the workers have AIDS and the future seems very dangerous.
Relief Work- Lahu relief team.
April 23rd to May 19th , 2003 we have been to Chiang Mai, Tachilek, Mine Pya, Kyinetone, Mine Young, Mine Pyin to help people and collect news of Human Rights violations by the Burma Army.
On May 5th , 2003 we sent a relief team to help IDPs inside Burma.
6.The activities of SPDC.
MineHsa army Battalion No. 49
Mine Tone army ” No. 65
Mine Tone army ” No. 519
These units force people to porter and now these units are preparing to make war with SSA and with other resistance armies.
At Mine Tone many cars and motorcycles are confiscated for temporary transport work in support of the Burma Army. On May 28th, 2003 we heard the explosion of the big guns- 120mm mortars from the town of Pinlon.
On May 4 to 7, at Mine Tone Burma Army Bn No.65, has 13 big guns- 120mm. . One of the Burma Army soldiers told the villagers that the big guns can fire three days distant and hit the right target. They put the big guns at Mine Han base. When they carry the big guns the soldiers do not wear the Burmese uniform but they wear guerilla-m resistance uniforms.
SPDC Army activities at the Thai border.
The Army of SPDC uses “Wa” Army BN (894) commander name “Tha Mark” to make war with Thai army and to kidnap Thai Villages. The local commander of the Burmese forces at Mine Tone base has control of these operations.
>From 2000 unto the present (2003) in the Eastern Shan States, the army of the SPDC persecutes the Lahu Christian people. They are not allowed to build new churches and can not rebuild the old churches.
Ages 35 years
Village Lwai Yoe village
Place Lwai Yoe Village, Mine pyin district
On 3.11.2002 Burma Army local commander, officer Aye kyaw, gave the order for villagers to carry the two baskets of corn each per family. They are also forced to carry wood for the Burma Army and do any labor demanded, including laying bricks and stone for roads and to help make new roads without any payment.
Sometime the villagers have an accident and have injuries such as a broken leg or pain in their eyes. They don’t receive medicine but also when they can not work because of these injuries, they have to pay a fine of 500 Kyats to 1000 Kyats.
We looked after 35 patients during this mission. We noticed a significant difference between the Lahu people in Thailand and those in Burma.
Lahu in Burma
Most common cases treated were:
Lahu in Thailand
Most common cases treated were:
9. We noticed that FBR Lahu teams are very useful to organize the peoples to help Burma to become a democratic country. These kinds of teams are especially useful for the IDPs who are in great need. This team work is very good in that it encourages the Lahu people everywhere. The Lahu relief teams can help and organize the Lahu people for human rights, to meet emergency humanitarian needs and to work together for democracy.
We want to continue this work and we can do it. Our mission is to help those in need, to share their stories and to expose the deeds of the SPDC.
Our team is preparing for the next mission and will try our best. We need more experience, advice and help. We will do our next mission in the 9 districts of Eastern Shan state among the Lahu there; Mine Tung, Mine Sat, Kyain Tung, Mine Pya, Mine Kant, Mine Yan, Mine Youg, Mine Pyin.