Dooplaya Interview: Saw J---, January 2018


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Dooplaya Interview: Saw J---, January 2018

Published date:
Wednesday, July 25, 2018


This Interview with the village tract head Saw J--- describes events that occurred in Win Yay Township, Dooplaya District, during the month of January 2018. It includes information about abuse of power by a Karen National Liberation Army soldier, instances of forced labour, problems regarding a reserved forest, and development projects.

  • In January 2018, a Karen National Liberation Army (KNLA) Officer Poe Chit punished villagers who were farming on land demarcated as a reserved forest. He ordered them to log wood for him without any compensation. In this case, Officer Poe Chit used his position of authority to punish local community members in a way that benefitted him economically.  
  • K--- villagers are facing livelihood challenges because the Karen National Union (KNU) Forestry Department created a reserved forest that limits villagers’ use of the forest to secure their livelihoods.
  • A Japanese organisation provided 55 solar panels to local villagers in K--- village, Kwee K’Chaw Kyi village tract, Win Yay Township.


[1] KHRG trains community members in southeastern Burma/Myanmar to document individual human rights abuses using a standardised reporting format; conduct interviews with other villagers; and write general updates on the situation in areas with which they are familiar. When conducting interviews, community members are trained to use loose question guidelines, but also to encourage interviewees to speak freely about recent events, raise issues that they consider to be important and share their opinions or perspectives on abuse and other local dynamics.

[2] In order to increase the transparency of KHRG methodology and more directly communicate the experiences and perspectives of villagers in southeastern Burma/Myanmar, KHRG aims to make all field information received available on the KHRG website once it has been processed and translated, subject only to security considerations. For additional reports categorised by Type, Issue, Location and Year, please see the Related Readings component following each report on KHRG’s website.

[3] All conversion estimates for the kyat in this report are based on the May 14, 2017 official market rate of 1,346 kyats to US $1.

[4] This villager is likely referring to the Nippon Foundation. The Nippon Foundation is a Japanese NGO currently implementing social innovation and development projects in Burma/Myanmar. KHRG commonly receives updates from community members on The Nippon Foundation’s recent activities in  Karen State, see more at “Nyaunglebin Field Report: Militarisation, land confiscation, violent abuse, ‘re-relocated’ IDPs, landmines, and development projects, December 2015 to December 2016,” October 2017, KHRG, and “Hpa-an Field Report: Continued difficulties under ceasefire, January to December 2015,” October 2016, KHRG. 

[5] A standard refers to a school year in the education system of Burma/Myanmar. The basic education system has a 5-4-2 structure. Primary school runs from Standard 1 to Standard 5, lower secondary school is Standard 6 to Standard 9, and upper secondary school is Standard 10 to Standard 11.