The Life of Ethnics Fearing of War Crisis More Than COVID

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Soe Htike Aung

While the citizens are living with care at home to tackle the spread of virus encountering around the globe, some of the ethnic people are struggling for survival from war in ethnic areas instead of prevention from this pandemic.

There are already about (150,000) displaced persons due to the conflicts between Myanmar Army and AA in Arakhine and Chin State. The fighting is still taking place, and totally (28) citizens including children were dead because of the fights at Chin State within previous 30 days.

Salai Lian from Chin Human Rights Group said, “We are raising our voice to eliminate any grievances, loss of life, and injuries caused by the war. Our purpose is to stand with the citizens and disclose their expectations as much as we can.”

Salai Lian from Chin Human Rights Group also said there are more fighting in this civilian government reign although there was rare fighting in previous government reign.

It said the government army attacked Kawng Ho Nam Army Base at eastern Mong Ton Township, Shan State, March 25th. That army base belongs to the Restoration of Shan State Council/ Shan State Army; the army which already signed the union level Nationwide Ceasefire Agreement (NCA).

After the fight, the government army inquired local people about Shan armies, accused them as ration supporters, and made used them as guide to battlefield.

Therefore, in the human rights abuse update released by Shan Human Rights Foundation, it said there are human rights abuse of the government military.

The Spokesman of Press Release Sai Ywant Lwin said, “Myanmar government military has responsibility to protect and prevent from the pandemic, and while every nation is struggling for tackling this pandemic strongly, Myanmar government military against on it. So, we had to release like this. We would like to eliminate the threats and human rights abuses upon innocent civilians.”

The Director of Future Light Center, member of ND-Burma, from the Network for Human Rights Documentation (Myanmar) Daw Thant Thant Aung said it is necessary to stop these conflicts in order to overcome the crisis including the COVID-19 pandemic since citizens are suffering from the war crisis in ethnic areas.

“While people are struggling until now with this global pandemic COVID-19, and the current situation of Myanmar is like there is no peace in Arakhine and northern Shan State also. It is worse in these days. The condition in Arakhine is really bad due to the heavy artillery.” said Daw Thant Thant Aung.

The Network for Human Rights Documentation (Myanmar) released their statement on April 10th that they believe Myanmar would achieve for peace only if the government military and ethnic armed groups cooperate jointly.

According to the record of the members of Human Rights Network such as Ta’ang Women’s Organization (TWO), Ta’ang Student and Youth Union (TSYU), and Ta’ang Community Based Social Organizations, there were totally 18 cases of unlawful arrest, torture, and forced labor within a month in March 2020.

In Arakhine State, there are some trickles of humanitarian aid due to the government’s internet blackout. It also hazarded to the flow of sharing crucial information to civilians regarding to the prevention of Coronavirus. At Palat Wa Township in Arakhine and Chin State, there are 51 cases of kill, torture, human abuse, missed civilians, forced arrest, and oppression upon social media.

“We have seen the dead rate due to civil war crisis is higher than the dead rate due to Covid crisis. This situation is at severely high concerns.” said Daw Thant Thant Aung.

It also said both the government military and ethnic armed groups are required to respect and comply the basic rule and policy of human rights released globally.

Totally 139 organizations from both inside and outside of the nations and private aid group signed on April 15th to eliminate all the fights targeting to civilians immediately and to protect the and lives and properties of innocent civilians.

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