Situation Update | Ta Naw Th’Ree Township, Mergui-Tavoy District (January to May 2015)
The following Situation Update was received by KHRG in June 2015. It was written by a community member in Mergui-Tavoy District who has been trained by KHRG to monitor local human rights conditions. It is presented below translated exactly as originally written, save for minor edits for clarity and security.
Ta Naw Th’Ree Township six [five] month situation update, from January to May 2015.
The contents are:
- Tatmadaw activity
- Human rights abuse
- The situation of the civilians
I would like to discuss the situation in Ta Naw Th’Ree Township, from January to May 2015. The topics include Tatmadaw activity, human rights abuse, the situation of the civilians, healthcare, and education.
In Ta Naw Th’Ree Township, Tatmadaw Light Infantry Battalion (LIB) #224 has been active in Moh Taw area. LIB #593 led by Battalion Commander Kyaw Shein has been active in Kay area. LIB #561 has been active in Ta Keh area. I do not know the military activity in other areas. I am still in the process of finding out. During these six [five] months, the Tatmadaw conducted activities such as using horses to send their rations to the border area, and they have also been active near the villages. A group of [Burma/Myanmar] government staff that is active are from [the Burma/Myanmar government department of] Military Security Affairs, and they are always trying to find out about the KNLA [Karen National Liberation Army].
Human rights abuse
During these six months, I did not see any human rights abuse. In the past when the fighting was happening, the companies confiscated the villagers’ lands and they did not pay them compensation. Regarding the list of the land that was confiscated in the past, I am in the process of collecting the list [of the confiscated lands]. I will send it to you later when we have collected the list.
The situation of the civilians
Regarding the situation of the civilians in Ta Naw Th’Ree Township, the civilians have more freedom to work and travel after the ceasefire. They do not have to be afraid [of the Tatmadaw] like they did in the past. The villagers mostly work on hill farms, plantations, and paddy fields.
During the six [five] month period, the civilians were mostly suffering from diseases [and ailments] such as malaria, anemia, malnutrition, tuberculosis, and other minor diseases such as herpes, and diarrhoea. Those who suffer from diseases have to go to KNU [Karen National Union] clinics and [Burma/Myanmar] government hospitals for treatment. Regarding malaria, I see that a local, anti-malaria [community] group entered [into the area] and treated [those who were suffering from malaria]. Regarding the mothers and their young children, Mother and Children Group [local non-governmental organisation] came and gave vaccination injections once a month to them. We can also presently see that KNU health workers entered into the village and are providing medical treatment for the villagers.
At present, regarding the education sector in Ta Naw Th’Ree Township, the [Burma/Myanmar] government is improving the schools, as they received funding from an [unknown] organisation. Now, we can see that Karen language is allowed to be taught in some schools in the spare time [outside of school hours]. The [Burma/Myanmar] government also sent their own teachers to most of the schools. In the past, the villagers had to hire most of the teachers. In terms of the Karen schools which are in Ta Naw Th’Ree Township, we see that the Karen Education Department [KED] supports the schools by providing materials, pens, notebooks, pencils, and clothes for teachers.
The above mentioned is the real situation that I have experienced, seen and heard, and then written up [in this report].