Toungoo district: Civilians displaced by dams, roads, and military control

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Toungoo district: Civilians displaced by dams, roads, and military control

Published date:
Friday, August 19, 2005

'Development' as implemented by the SPDC in Toungoo District of northern Karen State means dams, roads, military camps, and relocation sites. This report gives examples of how dams and roads are restricting the movement of civilians, bringing more forced labour to their villages, and bringing more extortion and taxation down on their heads. New military camps are confiscating hundreds of acres of productive farmland. Villagers are being forced to fill military roles as sentries for roads and military installations. Forced relocation sites are depriving people not only of their homes and fields, but more importantly of their freedom to support themselves. Many say it is the worst year in memory, and they face a choice between a destitute life doing forced labour in an SPDC relocation site, or a life avoiding SPDC snipers, patrols, and landmines in the hills. The SPDC's scorched-earth 'clearances' of people out of the hills and its repressive development projects in areas it controls are leading to severe food scarcity, widespread disease and mortality in both contexts.