Karenni Labourers Trafficked in Wa Self-administered Division

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By Kantarawaddy Times

Labourers from Karenni State and other areas of Burma, who are employed in Mueng Phoung, a town within the Wa Self-administered Division, are facing abuse and exploitation.

A Karenni man, who has been employed at a factory for over a year, stated that they are being bullied by their manager, who also serves as the Burmese translator. Furthermore, this individual is even stealing some of their wages. In some instances, workers have been attacked and left bleeding.

Numerous people from Karenni, Kachin, Shan, and Mon states, as well as the Yangon Region, have sought employment in the area in northern Shan State near the Chinese border, unaware of the dire working conditions. Unfortunately, some of them have fallen victim to human trafficking.

“They expected to receive a high salary here. But there have been reported cases of human trafficking in this region. Victims are sold to Chinese businessmen and forced to work in their factories. If they fail to comply with the demands of their Chinese bosses, they are subjected to beatings by the Burmese labourers.

The Wa Self-Administered Division stands as an autonomous self-governing territory within Burma. Although the government designates this region as being under the self-administration of the Wa people, it is effectively managed by the self-proclaimed Wa State, recognized officially as the Wa Special Region 2. It is controlled by the United Wa State Party/Army, which is one of the most powerful ethnic armed group in the country.

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