Situation Update | Kawkareik Township, Dooplaya District (August to October 2015)
The following Situation Update was received by KHRG in March 2016. It was written by a community member in Dooplaya District who has been trained by KHRG to monitor human rights conditions. It is presented below translated exactly as originally written, save for minor edits for clarity and security. This report was received along with other information from Dooplaya District, including one other situation update, one interview, 103 photographs and two video clips.
This report concerns the situation of the Tatmadaw, the BGF [Border Guard Force], the DKBA [Democratic Karen Benevolent Army], civilians, and healthcare and education in Kawkareik Township between August 1st and October 30th 2015.
Subject [Tatmadaw and BGF activity]
The Tatmadaw were active in Klay village, Kawkareik Township [during the period of this report]. The Tatmadaw patrolled many villages: Ta Der Hkoh village, Kway Ka Lay village and P’Nweh Poo Law Pa village. They then came back to the Klay village army camp. They patrolled on August 16th 2015. They are Light Infantry Battalion [LIB] #3583 which is under [the control of] Military Operations Command [MOC] #13 led by Thet Naing. Han Min Tun is the chief of their column. Yan Naing Soe is the [Klay village] army camp commander and the second in charge of the army camp is Aung Thu Hein. There are a total of 50 soldiers in Klay village army camp.
On August 26th 2015 at 4:40 pm, Commanding General Tin Zaw Win of Ya Ta Ka Southeast Command Headquarters in Mawlamyine [Moulmein]; Captain Soe Min Oo of MOC #12; G1 [personnel officer] Major Kyi Soe Khaing of MOC #12; and BGF Captain Saw Chit Thu started to patrol on the Asian Highway in Kawkareik with 22 trucks. They [the above leaders, not including the BGF Captain], are from IB [Infantry Battalion] #231 and IB #230. They came to position themselves on the Asian Highway to maintain security while their leaders went to meet with Thai [government and military] leaders in Myawaddy Town.
[Clash between DKBA and BGF]
On August 29th 2015, when the clash happened between the DKBA led by General Kyaw Thet and the BGF on the road [Asian Highway], their [DKBA] followers were separated [from the rest of the DKBA group] on the hill. The villagers also had to flee to hide themselves on the hill [forest]. They [the villagers] also did not bring enough food but no one [none of the villagers] got injured [from the fighting]. General Kyaw Thet opened fire on the BGF soldiers who stayed near the village with four M79s [grenade launchers] and two M16s. Fortunately, the M79s [grenades] did not explode. If they had exploded, they would have injured the villagers.
[Effects on villagers’ livelihoods, education and healthcare]
When the civilians were fleeing [from this clash], some of the villagers were not able to work for their livelihoods. They also did not have money to use [to support themselves]; therefore it [the fighting] affects the villagers’ rights. Regarding education and healthcare, it is not very good [for the villagers]. When the villagers fled to the forest, this affected their [access to] healthcare and education.
This is about the situation of the Tatmadaw, BGF, DKBA, healthcare and education in Kawkareik Township, as mentioned above.