Loikaw Residents Afraid To Cultivate Farms

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By Kantarawaddy Times

Farmers are struggling to survive amid the protracted conflict in Loikaw Township, Karenni State. They’ve lost their income after the fighting forced them out of their homes and they have been forced to borrow money to buy fertiliser for the next planting season.

Now the farmers from Pan Kan, Ywa Tan Shay, Dor Sam Bun are worried about how they’ll pay back their loans after they haven’t returned to their farms afraid of the many Burma Army (BA) soldiers deployed nearby.

Regime fighter jets attacked the villages in January as well as Mai Lon and Htoo Du Ngantha, forcing everyone to flee. Almost every one are farmers.

“BA soldiers burned our the bamboo hut in our farm, which we’ve been unable to visit for over two months. So I think my plants in my farm must have already all died,” a man told Kantarawaddy Times preferring his name not revealed.

Another source living on the outskirts of Loikaw town, also requesting anonymity, said although some people have returned home they don’t know when they’ll have to flee again. He said he rarely goes to the Karenni State capital.

Of the almost 200,000 who have been displaced by fighting in Karenni State, 20,000 people from Loikaw town have sought refuge in other towns or in remote villages.

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