Local NGOs Accuse Government of ‘War Crimes’ in Shan State Conflict

A coalition of Shan community based organisations has accused the Burmese Government of committing ‘war crimes’ in the ongoing Shan State conflict.

At a press conference held in Bangkok, Thailand, more than 30 Shan community organisations, including Shan Human Rights Foundation, said that Burmese Government soldiers had engaged in the “shootings and rape of villagers.”

“[Government] troops have been launching repeated air and ground missile attacks on densely populated civilian areas. From November 9 to 12, fighter aircraft and artillery rained bombs on 6,000 civilians in the town of Mong Nawng, as well as on Wan Saw village in Mong Hsu, where over 1,500 displaced villagers were sheltering,” the Shan community based organisations said in a statement.

“These attacks, and abuses including shooting and rape of villagers, have displaced over 10,000 people from Ke See, Mong Hsu and Mong Nawng townships.”

Latest figures from the International Displacement Monitoring Centre noted that more than 98,000 civilians had been displaced in fighting in Northern Shan State and Kachin State following a Burma Army attacks in June 2011.

The Shan community based organisations called for the international community to condemn the ongoing offensives of the Burma Army that is driving the conflict.

“Keeping silent about Naypyidaw’s latest attacks and war crimes is giving the green light to these atrocities,” human rights activist Charm Tong and member of the Shan Women’s Action Network said.

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