The Burma Army is now attacking Karen civilians in Western Karen State, Burma. These attacks have displaced over 3,000 villagers (1,000 have fled to the Thailand border the rest are now IDPs) in Toungoo District. Villagers have fled into the jungle with very little food or clothing. The Burma Army is burning homes, rice barns and laying landmines to stop villagers from returning to their homes and fields. The following reports are from firsthand accounts of villagers we met en route as our relief team headed in west while the displaced families fled East.
Ker Der Gah Village (50-60 Families)
Decapitated-Saw Po De, 40 years old of Ker Der Gah Village was captured, than later found with his head cut off in a nearby river. Saw Nu, 50 years old along with three other villagers were also captured and have not been seen since. The Burma Army troops before departing laid landmines so villagers would not return. The same village, was burned down in 1997 by the Burma Army IB 20.
Hpa Wae Der Koh Village (40 families)
Landmines were laid by the Burma Army (IB 20) in March 2006. A villager Saw Ley stepped on a landmine and died leaving behind a pregnant wife. Saw Pa Oo Kyaut, 50 years old with eight children also received injuries from a landmine. The people told us that he was not allowed by the Burma Army to go to Thandaung Gyi for treatment because authorities feared that foreigners who visit there would find out. He is now being treated in Tanduang.
Ler Koh Der Koh Village
Burned down in 1997 by IB 20.
Ler Ker Der Thah Village (35 Families)
In December 2005 the Burma Army burned eleven houses in this village. February 2006, the Burma Army returned and burned down the rest of the village (29 houses). In 2000 landmines were laid in and outside of the village. Saw Mo She, 39 years old stepped on a landmine outside of the village and was killed. In April, 2000 Saw Eh Ya was captured in a coffee field and shot. In May, 2006 Saw Bay Lo, 32 years old stepped on a landmine in the village.
Pa Wae Der Gah Village (28 families)
Burma Army troops burned the village, rice and laid landmines.
Koh Mee Koh (22 families)
In February 2006, the Burma Army stole belongings of villagers then burned the village and laid landmines.
Ker Law Gah (50 families)
Burma Army troops captured four people from this village.
Sah Ba Law Ke (40 families)
In February 2006, Burma Army troops fired four mortars into the village and continued firing mortars into the village in following days. The village and rice were later burned by the Burma Army. Division 66 has now built a new camp at this village.
Haw Lu Der (27 families)
The Burma Army burned the rice and village in February, 2006. Two water buffaloes also stepped on landmines laid there. The village was previously burned in 1998.
Burma Army troops had previously burned this village but villagers had returned and built temporary structures there. The Burma Army returned, villagers fled and the village was land mined preventing their return.
The Burma Army is now attacking Karen civilians in Western Karen State, Burma. These attacks have displaced over 1,200 villagers (IDPs) in Mon Townships alone (Nyaunglebin District), for a total of 3,000 displaced in the district. Villagers have fled into the jungle with very little food or clothing. The Burma Army is burning homes, rice barns and laying landmines to stop villagers from returning to their homes and fields.
26 March 2006
The Burma Army (LIB 522 with IB 240 and LIB 560) burned 5 houses in Kwi Do Kaw village in Mon Township. The soldiers then slaughtered and ate all of the animals of that village.
27 March 2006
The Burma Army (LIB 522 with IB 240 and LIB 560) shot and killed two villagers of Kyauk Kyaw and wounded a ten year old girl. At 5:00 pm two more villagers of Maw La Daw village were shot and killed by the same troops.
29 March 2006
Burma Army troops took food from Kyauk Kyi Pew and Ma La Daw and set up a security position to block the Maw La Daw road, preventing all civilian movement.
30 March 2006
*Sixteen trucks full of supplies arrived at Da Bin Nyo in Mon Township, Nyaunglebin District. Burma Army soldiers then demanded that one hundred bullock carts be provided to move their supplies. At 12:00 pm forty bullock carts were produced and food arrived at Ma La Daw.
31 March 2006
Three hundred more troops reinforced Ma La Daw.
In the face of this suffering the people still maintain their dignity and generosity, inviting us to eat with them and thanking us for the very little we can do.
God bless you all, FBR
For more information about these ongoing attacks, please see these earlier reports:
- 380 Newly Displaced Karen People Arrive at the Salween River. Over 5000 Now in Hiding
- Update on Burma Army Attacks in Toungoo and Nyaunglebin Districts
- New Group of 150 IDPs Attempting to Flee to Salween River