Kachin people facing human rights abuses

The Kachin Women’s Association of Thailand (KWAT) released a statement on Thursday urging the international community to help stop the Burmese government’s consistent human rights violations even as the conflict has stabilized.

Moon Nay Li, a spokesperson for KWAT spoke to Karen News about the fighting between the Burma Army and the Kachin Independence Army (KIA). Moon Nay Li said the fighting has not completely stopped, clashes are still happening and the Burma Army have been fortifying their positions and Kachin people are still being forced to be porters for the army.

Speaking to Karen News, Moon Nay Li said.

“The government is talking peace and negotiations but meanwhile it is sending its army supplies, weapons and reinforcing its fortifications. The most serious issues are that the Kachin people are being abused brutally. In terms of human right violations, the international community still needs to pressure the actions of the government.”

Earlier this week, on February 26, fighting between the KIA and the government’s army escalated in Yei Khu village in northern Shan State.

According to KWAT, there are now over 20,000 Kachin displaced people in the border town of Laiza and in camps in nearby Myitkyina Township and Hpakant Township in Kachin State. Despite a government announcement earlier last month that humanitarian aid would be allowed in to displaced people in Kachin-controlled areas, an international aid convoy to Laiza was blocked on February 25.

Moon Nay Li said KWAT is calling for a re-imposition of sanctions against the Burmese government, and for an UN-led Commission-of-Inquiry to investigate crimes against humanity and war crimes in Burma.

The Kachin Women’s Associaton Thailand (KWAT) was formed on the 9th September 1999 in Chiang Mai, Thailand with the aim of empowering Kachin women and children in Kachin communities.

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