Sustained Tatmadaw resupply operations in Thaton, Nyaunglebin and Papun during ceasefire


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Sustained Tatmadaw resupply operations in Thaton, Nyaunglebin and Papun during ceasefire

Published date:
Thursday, May 31, 2012

During the first three months after the January 2012 ceasefire between the Karen National Union (KNU) and the Burma government, villagers in Thaton, Nyaunglebin and Papun districts have raised concerns about Tatmadaw activity related to resupply operations, troop reinforcements and the transport of heavy artillery. LID #44 soldiers were deployed for road security purposes during military resupply operations at the end of January along the Bilin riverbank in Thaton District, while further north in Nyaunglebin District, LIB #702 transported rations, mortars and troop reinforcements, while Tatmadaw soldiers burned the vehicle road near three army camps. In Papun District, the vehicle road was repaired in early February before Tatmadaw soldiers transported supplies and troop reinforcements to camps in the area around Wa Klee Koo. The restricted scope of Tatmadaw operations since the ceasefire negotiations in January has allowed some villagers in Papun District to return to previously abandoned agricultural land. Villagers nonetheless complained of movement restrictions during military resupply operations, and expressed concerns that, because Tatmadaw troops have been reinforced and are now well-supplied, they will be in an advantageous position if the current ceasefire is broken.


[1] While the motive behind the burning of roads in this case is unclear, a Tatmadaw deserter previously described to KHRG attempts by Tatmadaw troops to remove homemade landmines planted by non-state armed groups (NSAGs) by burning overgrown sections of road; see Uncertain Ground: Landmines in eastern Burma, KHRG, May 2012, pp. 22-23. Regardless of motivation, reckless burning of land has severe impacts on villagers' livelihoods when it destroys forest or agricultural areas under cultivation; see "Toungoo Situation Update: Tantabin Township, January to March 2012," KHRG, May 2012.