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Burma/Myanmar, Landmine Monitor Report 2007


Mine Ban Treaty status

Not a State Party




APMs; some AVMs and ERW

Estimated area of contamination


Demining progress in 2006

None reported

MRE capacity

Increased but remains inadequate

Mine/ERW casualties in 2006

Total: 243 (2005: 231)

Mines:  232 (2005: 231)

Unknown devices: 11 (2005: 0)

Casualty analysis

Killed: 20 (2 civilians, 2 children, 6 military,

10 unknown) (2005: 5)

Injured: 223 (4 civilians, 2 children, 16 military,

201 unknown) (2005: 225)

Estimated mine/ERW survivors

10,605 (2005: 8,864)

Availability of services in 2006


Key developments since May 2006

Both the military junta and non-state armed groups continued to use antipersonnel mines extensively. Prolonged military operations in eastern states bordering Thailand increased mine contamination; Burmese migrants gave first reports of mine contamination in Mandalay division. Mine/ERW casualties increased in 2006. ICRC closed five field offices and was unable to serve conflict casualties in border areas. A survey identified 464 mine/ERW casualties in Karen state.

Mine Ban Policy

The Union of Myanmar’s ruling military State Peace and Development Council (SPDC) has not acceded to the Mine Ban Treaty. Myanmar was one of 17 countries that abstained from voting on UN General Assembly Resolution 61/84 on 6 December 2006, which called for universalization of the Mine Ban Treaty. In explaining its vote, it said, “Myanmar in principle is in favour of banning the export, transfer and indiscriminate use of anti-personnel mines…. [M]y delegation respects the position of the States parties to the Convention. We oppose the indiscriminate use of anti-personnel mines which causes death and injury to the innocent people all over the world. At the same time, Myanmar believes that all states have the right to self-defence….”[2]

Myanmar participated as an observer in the Seventh Meeting of States Parties to the Mine Ban Treaty in Geneva in September 2006.[3] It did not make any statements. Prior to this, it had only attended one meeting related to the Mine Ban Treaty, in Bangkok in September 2003.

Myanmar is not party to the Convention on Conventional Weapons, but attended as an observer the Eighth Annual Conference of States Parties to CCW Amended Protocol II in November 2006.

Requests for information pertaining to this report, delivered to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Myanmar’s new capital of Nay Pyi Taw, have not been answered.

In January 2007 the opposition National League for Democracy, which continues to engage the military junta to take steps toward a negotiated settlement on the governance of the country, reaffirmed that it would seek the country’s accession to the Mine Ban Treaty as a matter of national urgency when it can assemble a parliament.[4]

The Halt Mine Use in Burma campaign, launched by the ICBL in 2003, distributed 1,600 copies of the Burmese-language translation of the country report in Landmine Monitor Report 2006.

Production, Transfer and Stockpiling

Myanmar Defense Products Industries, a state enterprise, produces antipersonnel landmines.[5] In the past few years, Landmine Monitor has reported that the Myanmar Army is using an increasing number of mines of United States M-14 design, but could not identify their origin. Landmine Monitor has learned that these blast mines are manufactured by Myanmar Defense Products Industries at Ngyaung Chay Dauk, in Bago division.[6] Because of its low metal content, production and use of this type of mine is prohibited by Amended Protocol II of CCW, unless eight or more grams of metal are added.

Authorities in Myanmar have not offered any information about the types and quantities of antipersonnel mines stockpiled. Landmine Monitor has reported that, in addition to domestic production, Myanmar has obtained and used antipersonnel mines of Chinese, Indian, Italian, Soviet, US and unidentified manufacture.[7] Myanmar is not known to have exported antipersonnel mines, but has no formal moratorium or ban in place.


Myanmar’s military forces and non-state armed groups have used antipersonnel mines consistently throughout the long-running civil war. Mine use continued in 2006 and 2007 in Karen (Kayin), Karenni (Kayah) and Shan states and the Tenasserim (Tanintharyi) division.

In February 2007 the Special Rapporteur on the Situation of Human Rights in Myanmar, in his final report to the UN Human Rights Council, continued to voice his concern about the impact of the use of landmines in the country: “Among the most appalling features of the military campaign in ethnic areas is the disproportionate effect on civilian populations. In addition to the heightened risks posed by … anti-personnel mines, the killing, terrorizing or displacement of civilians is often part of a deliberate strategy to separate ethnic armed groups from their civilian populations.”[8]

The Free Burma Rangers (FBR), an evangelical organization offering medical and other assistance to internally displaced people in some conflict areas, have reported numerous incidents of mine-laying by the Myanmar Army in and near areas where FBR have activities. The FBR reported the following instances of mine use by SPDC forces:

  • Between May and November 2006, 900 villagers were moved to a relocation site at Maladawin Mon township, Karen state, as a part of counter-insurgency actions by the SPDC; the Myanmar Army issued a warning that it had placed landmines around the site.[9]
  • In November 2006, four columns of the Myanmar Army laid landmines in Saw Thay Der area; the Karen National Liberation Army removed 16 of the mines.[10]
  • On 3 November 2006, Myanmar Army units from Ko La Wah Lu army camp placed landmines in Nwa Lay Ko village; returning villagers stepped on some of the landmines.[11]
  • During an offensive in late 2006 in Mone township, 60 families were displaced from their villages because of landmines. Myanmar Army units planted hundreds of landmines of which 11 were discovered on paths used by the villagers (three in Thay Kay Lu village and eight in the Nwa Hta area).[12]
  • On 17 March 2007, the Light Infantry Brigade 590 laid mines along the eastern edges of Tai Pin, Myet Ye, Po Thaung Su, Nye Loud Teh, U Chit Kin, Thit Chat Zeik and Kyaung Bya villages in Mone township of Taungoo district, in order to prevent villagers from accessing their fields in the planting season.[13]
  • On 3 January 2007, SPDC units placed 15 landmines near mile 6 of the Mawchi road in Karenni state.[14]
  • On 6 July 2006, Light Infantry Brigade 568 of the army laid antipersonnel mines around Saw Wah Der village. Two landmines were found on 7 July near villagers’ homes and one was found near the bathing area.[15]

In April 2007 the Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG) reported that the SPDC was alleged to have planted landmines along the Day Loh river in Than Daung township to prohibit movement through the area.[16] A June 2006 KHRG report contained numerous allegations of mine use. The Karen National Liberation Army said that in Than Daung township, the 66th Light Infantry Division of the army laid mines on the paths between Pa Weh village and Htee Bpu Kee, Hta Yeh Ploh and Htee Bpu Kee, Thi Thaw Ko and Htee Bpu Kee, and K’Ter Kee and Dee Dah Ko, as well as paths to the Day Loh river.[17] In Taungoo district, the SPDC is alleged to have laid mines to prevent civilian commerce between the plains and hill areas, and warned the populace that it had mined all pathways into the hills.[18] The KHRG alleges that SPDC units enter villages from which inhabitants have fled or been relocated and plant landmines to discourage return. The mines are alleged to be laid where returnees would likely travel, such as at the base of the ladder leading into a house, in the village plantation, in front of their rice storage barns or in schools.[19]

The Thailand Burma Border Consortium reported that in August 2006, to the east of Bokpyin town, Tenasserim division, SPDC patrols laid antipersonnel mines near rice fields to force displacement of the population. In the same month SPDC units are alleged to have mined travel routes and cultivation areas in Than Duang township, Karen state, in order to prevent resettlement of people who fled the area.[20]

According to staff working with a development organization in Shan state, SPDC troops not only used antipersonnel mines in perimeter defense of their camps, but also used them on paths which units of the rebel Shan State Army-South use.[21] Throughout 2006 police and other units of the security forces were sent to Pyin Oo Lwin Army Engineering School to receive training in mines and booby-traps.[22]

Non-State Armed Groups

Many different ethnic and rebel political organizations exist within the country. Landmine Monitor has identified at least 17 non-state armed groups (NSAGs) that have used antipersonnel mines in Burma since 1999. Some of these groups have ceased to exist or no longer use mines. In a 2006 survey on humanitarian protection, members of some NSAGs acknowledged that the main transgression of their humanitarian responsibility to protect civilians was their continued use of landmines.[23]

Four armed opposition groups unilaterally renounced the use of antipersonnel mines by signing the Deed of Commitment administered by the NGO Geneva Call. The Lahu Democratic Front (LDF), the Palaung State Liberation Front (PSLF), and the Pa-O People’s Liberation Organization (PPLO) signed in April 2007.[24] The Chin National Front/Army (CNF/A) signed on 31 July 2006. Upon committing to a ban CNF Secretary of External Affairs, Dr. Suikhar, stated, “Leaders of both sides of the conflict focus on the military and political issues we are facing today, however, they overlook the impact of landmines both now and in the future.”[25] All four groups are members of the National Democratic Front of Burma (NDF), an armed anti-junta alliance. In response to lobbying by Geneva Call, both the NDF and the Democratic Alliance of Burma issued statements calling for a halt in attacks by Burmese authorities, listing similar conditions for mine use and inviting member organizations to cooperate with Geneva Call; however, neither organization requested their members to ban the use of mines.[26]

Landmine Monitor identified the CNF/A as a mine user and producer in its reports from 2001 to 2006. It identified the PaO People’s Liberation Organization (PPLO) as a mine user in its reports from 2002 to 2004. The PPLO have stated to Geneva Call that they were not a mine user and refute the allegation that they used mines.[27]

In 2002 Landmine Monitor reported that the Lahu National Organization declared a ‘no mine use’ policy and issued a command to its soldiers to neither use nor acquire antipersonnel mines. The past status of the PSLF as a user of mines is not known.

The Thailand Campaign to Ban Landmines (TCBL) issued a press release on 18 January 2007 encouraging the SPDC and the Karen National Liberation Army’s Seventh Brigade to include the landmine issue in their ongoing talks.[28] In March 2007 the ICBL’s Halt Mine Use in Burma campaign appealed to the Karenni National Progressive Party (KNPP) and the Chin National Front to include the mine issue in any talks with the SPDC.


Two armed groups not previously identified as users of antipersonnel mines were alleged to have used mines in this reporting period. According to a development organization in Shan state, the National Democratic Alliance Army has laid antipersonnel mines to prevent incursions by SPDC troops or other militias into territory it controls.[29] It was awarded a “special military area” under a 1989 non-hostility pact with the military junta and has since expanded its territory on the Chinese and Laotian borders, where it profits from mineral concessions.[30]

Remnants of the Mong Tai Army maintain a camp along the Burma-Thai border near Tachielek. An aid worker told Landmine Monitor that the perimeter of the camp is mined.[31] The Mong Tai Army surrendered to the SPDC in 1996, and turned over 4,700 mines.[32]

The Karen National Liberation Army (KNLA), the Karenni Army, the Democratic Karen Buddhist Army (DKBA), the Shan State Army-South, the United Wa State Army and several other non-state armed groups continued to use antipersonnel mines in 2006 and early 2007.

Given the intensity of conflict in Karen state, it is likely that the KNLA was the NSAG using mines most extensively in this reporting period. According to the Karen Human Rights Group, there was a sharp increase in the use of mines across Taungoo district by all groups, leading to casualties.[33]

In mid-2006, villagers in Bu Kyih Kee abandoned their betel leaf plantations after the DKBA planted landmines around the base of the trees; others abandoned agricultural fields. Throughout Thaton district, the DKBA planted landmines along the outskirts of villages, in farm fields, under huts, around durian and betel nut plantations and along the sides of roads.[34]

The Karenni Army, the armed wing of the KNPP, has been identified as a mine user in previous Landmine Monitor reports. In a statement dated 31 August 2006, the KNPP admitted that “in certain circumstances we use them to defend our troops as we lack alternative means of defense. Our use of landmines is extremely limited and steps are taken to avoid civilian casualties. We only use them in military zones, not in civilian areas. The Karenni Army does not place landmines on roads and in other areas used by innocent civilians. They are used for defensive purposes and we have no intention of placing them in war-free-zones.”[35]

A development organization said that the Shan State Army-South was using antipersonnel mines during the reporting period to prevent pursuit by SPDC units in Shan state. It said the Shan State Army-South was using bounding antipersonnel mines and mines fixed to trees detonated by tripwire.[36]

In January 2007, a Myanmar Army commander for Shan state warned his troops to be aware of mine dangers when entering special military areas under the control of NSAGs which have non-hostility pacts with the SPDC.[37]

The state press and other media sources occasionally report mine incidents attributed to NSAGs. In January 2007, the state press said that four people had been injured over four days in different landmine incidents blamed on rebel forces in Kyaukkyi township, Pegu (Bago) division; it also said that on 16 January 2007, a landmine laid by rebel forces injured a farmer in Myaywady Karen (Kayin) state.[38]

A series of mine incidents was reported in July 2006. A woman lost her foot due to a landmine allegedly laid by rebel forces in Penwegon, Pegu (Bago) division, according to the state press. It was also reported that two government employees were killed and five were injured in Htantabin township, Pegu (Bago) division, during a mine ambush.[39] A sergeant from Light Infantry Battalion 565 was killed by a landmine explosion during fighting with rebels in Karen state. Another officer, four privates and one porter were seriously wounded in the same incident.[40]

There are unconfirmed reports of mine use by other NSAGs.[41] Some NSAGs that previously used mines appear to be spent as a military force, and some have turned to banditry.[42]

NSAG Production, Transfer and Stockpiling

The United Wa State Army continues to produce mines at an arms factory formerly belonging to the Burma Communist Party, which was set up with assistance from China. The factory produces a PMN type mine and two types of ammunition. It is located in eastern Shan state.[43]

Landmine Monitor has previously reported that the Karen National Liberation Army, the Democratic Karen Buddhist Army, and the Karenni Army have produced blast and fragmentation mines. Some also make Claymore-type mines, mines with antihandling fuzes and booby-traps. Armed groups in Burma have also acquired mines by lifting SPDC-laid mines from the ground, seizing SPDC stocks, and from the clandestine arms market.[44] Some of the opposition organizations that have non-hostility pacts with the SPDC still possess antipersonnel landmines.[45]

The LDF stated to Geneva Call that they had a stockpile of 300-400 antipersonnel mines, and the PSLF stated they possessed around 40-50 landmines.[46]

Landmine and ERW Problem

Landmines in Burma are concentrated mainly on its borders with Thailand, Bangladesh and India, and in eastern parts of the country marked by decades-old struggles by ethnic minorities for autonomy. However, 10 of Burma’s 14 states and divisions suffer from some degree of mine contamination, primarily antipersonnel mines.[47] The tri-border area between India, Burma and Bangladesh is also reported to be extensively mined. Burma is also affected by explosive remnants of war (ERW).

During 2006, the Myanmar Army’s offensive against ethnic minority armed groups continued in eastern states bordering Thailand, particularly Karen (Kayin), Karenni and Shan states, adding to the threat posed by mines in what was already the most mine-affected part of the country.[48] Human rights organizations alleged that the army and allied non-state armed groups laid large numbers of mines in order to separate armed groups from their civilian populations and as part of a “concerted policy denying people their livelihoods and food.”[49] NSAGs emplaced mines to try to slow the advance of government troops.[50]

During the offensive, the Burmese military and allied non-state armed groups also mined areas close to Thailand to obstruct and deter displaced people from fleeing across the border.[51] The UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) reported that some 2,000 refugees had arrived in Thailand “after a long, dangerous journey to the camps through heavily land-mined areas.”[52] A survey of 2,000 households in eight regions in eastern conflict zones found that people displaced by conflict are four times more at risk of becoming a mine victim than non-displaced people in the same area.[53]

In 2007 it was reported that Burmese migrants arriving in Thailand said they had seen mine warning signs north of Yoe Ma mountains and Yae Tar Shae Township, Mandalay division; this is the first time mines have been reported in this area.[54]

In some border areas proposed development has been impossible due to mine contamination; there are mines near gem mining sites and on land earmarked for infrastructure projects such as the Baluchaung (Lawpita) hydroelectric power station in central Karenni state.[55] In January 2007, after a geologist had been injured near the proposed Hutgyi dam on the Salween River, the Thai government requested safe passage for construction personnel through the Karen National Union (KNU) 7th brigade area―the KNU replied that guarantees of safety were not possible due to landmine contamination.[56]

United Nations assistance programs started encountering mine-affected communities during 2004 and early 2005 as the programs were extended to new areas. Mine contamination was reported in eastern Shan state around Kalaw, the area from Mong Pan to Mongton, and east of Lashio. In northern and central Karen (Kayin) state, new roads built into areas of ethnic minority insurgency are frequently mined along the berm (roadside) to prevent unauthorized movement by the population.[57]

Mine/ERW Clearance

No humanitarian mine clearance programs are known to exist in Burma. Some sporadic military clearance and village demining have been reported in previous years.[58]

In 2006, the United States embassy in Yangon notified authorities that abandoned unexploded ordnance believed to date from World War II had been uncovered at the construction site of its new embassy. The Myanmar Army dispatched a single soldier with a shovel and no protective gear, who recovered some ordnance. The US mission, lacking confidence the site had been cleared to safe standards, employed a Singaporean “military company” to complete and verify clearance, prior to further construction.[59]

Atrocity Demining

The International Labour Organization continued to express its concern over allegations of people forced to porter or remove mines against their will in Myanmar, some of whom have suffered “mutilations and violent deaths occurring during mine-clearing operations.”[60] The Karen Human Rights Group reported several instances in 2006 of the Myanmar Army taking prisoners during counter-insurgency military operations and forcing them to clear mines.[61] In February 2007, the Light Infantry Division 66 forced 274 people from 13 villages to cut back vegetation and clear mines along the Kler La-Buh Hsa Kee road in Karen state.[62] In December 2006 the KHRG reported that the government-allied non-state armed group, the Democratic Karen Buddhist Army, had forced villagers to walk in front of patrols to serve as human minesweepers.[63] The same division reportedly forced villagers to act as human minesweepers for road construction teams in other areas of Karen state in 2006.[64]

In May-June 2006 the army allegedly forced 850 people from 12 villages to walk ahead of troops as minesweepers along the Toungoo-Mawchi road in Karen state.[65] In July the government’s Military Operations Command 16 reportedly forced villagers from Muthey village in Karen state’s Kyauk Kyi township, to check a local road for mines.[66]

A former porter for the Myanmar Army in Shan state, interviewed in April 2006, said Myanmar Army troops ordered porters to sweep the soldiers’ sleeping places for landmines and that one porter detonated a landmine, losing a leg.[67]

Risk Reduction

Mined areas in Burma are not consistently marked. Anecdotal evidence suggests the Myanmar Army usually places a woven bamboo fence painted white both to denote the boundary of military camps and mined areas near military camps, and other strategic mined areas such as bridge approaches. In some instances, army units have issued verbal and written warnings to villagers living near areas where they have laid mines. Most armed groups claim to issue verbal warnings of the areas they mine.[68]

A 2006 survey among Burmese migrants in Thailand found that 11 percent of the respondents had seen mine danger signs in the country. Respondents came from all 14 states and divisions of Burma. Some 40 percent of the respondents knew about landmines in the country; of this subgroup, 35 percent heard about the mine problem from other people, and about 18 percent from each of the following: reading, radio and knowing a mine survivor. About 25 percent were warned of landmine dangers when they crossed into Thailand, and 25 percent knew of a mine survivor in their home villages.[69]

MRE activities appear to have increased in 2006 compared to previous years, but details of capacity and coverage have not been fully reported. In 2006 the Committee for Internally Displaced Karen People (CIDKP) and the Karen Department for Health and Welfare (KDHW) MRE office started a dangerous areas survey, a mine risk education program and a survey of mine casualties in rebel-controlled and contested sections of Karen state, with technical assistance from DanChurchAid. The program intends to gather initial information for a comprehensive mine action program at a later date. By December 2006 it had mapped 81 dangerous areas, most due to mine contamination, collected data on 464 mine casualties and provided MRE to 8,200 people living within the conflict zone.[70]

The Kawthoolei Department of Health and Welfare runs an MRE program in KNU-accessed areas of Karen state and has placed some warning signs to identify mined areas.[71] The local NGO Shanti Sena continued to provide MRE in 2006-2007.

Few MRE activities are known to have taken place in Burma in previous years.[72] The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) reported that its MRE activities in Burma were “put on hold” in 2006.[73]

MRE programs for Burmese refugees continued in internationally supported camps in Thailand.[74]

Landmine Casualties

In 2006, at least 243 new mine/ERW casualties are known to have occurred in Burma (20 killed and 223 injured).[75] This is a small increase from the 231 casualties reported in 2005 (five killed, 225 injured, one unknown).[76] Due to the lack of any systematic data collection system within the country and reluctance by all combatant groups to share information for security reasons, under-reporting is likely.

Landmine Monitor analysis of media reports recorded 114 mine/ERW casualties and received information on 129 casualties from hospitals, NGOs and confidential sources. The ICRC’s War Wounded program received 89 new mine/ERW casualties in 2006. In Thailand, the Mae Tao Clinic received 17, Mae Sot General Hospital 20 and Srisangwal Hospital three casualties from mines/ERW in Burma. The vast majority of casualties were civilians; only 22 military casualties were identified. Of the total in 2006, 223 casualties were caused by antipersonnel mines (14 killed, 209 injured), nine were caused by “mines” (three killed, six injured), and 11 were caused by unknown devices (three killed, eight injured).

Casualties continued to occur in 2007: there were 17 new mine/ERW casualties (four killed and 13 injured) as of 5 May. Eight (47 percent) were due to forced labor as porters.[77] One of the casualties was reportedly shot by military forces after being injured by a mine.[78]

Data Collection

There is no official data on the total number of mine/ERW casualties or incidents. Burma has a national health management information system,[79] but the Ministry of Health does not separate mine injuries from other trauma injuries.[80] The last census conducted in Burma was in 1983.

Nongovernmental efforts at systematic collection of casualty data have become more difficult since the military offensive that began in November 2005 increased perceptions of insecurity and prompted large population displacements.[81] Limited information from the CIDKP/KDHW survey in rebel-controlled and contested sections of Karen state identified 464 mine/ERW casualties by December 2006.[82] The ICRC collected information on conflict casualties but details on mine/ERW casualties were not reported.[83] In 2006 government regulations were issued preventing any mine-related surveys not declared in organizations’ original project documentation.[84]

Survivor Assistance

Assistance to mine survivors and people with disabilities continues to be marginal in Burma due to many years of neglect of the civilian medical system. The Ministry of Health is responsible for medical rehabilitation of people with disabilities.[85] Availability of medical care depends on where the mine incident occurs and comes from several sources, including the public health system, service providers in conflict zones and neighboring countries.[86] Reportedly, upgrading all levels of hospitals is an integral part of health policy in Burma. However, many basic needs are unmet due to financial limitations. There are no specific regulations on the quality, safety and efficiency in government hospitals, and there is a lack of supplies and management capacity.[87] Military survivors are reported to receive better treatment than civilians and are more likely to have post-injury employment opportunities.[88]

Several international organizations found their ability to provide assistance and protection to populations within conflict areas of the country severely restricted or prohibited by the ruling authorities during 2006 and early 2007, which will impact already limited services.[89]

The Kawthoolei Department of Health and Welfare maintains 33 mobile clinics for a target population of 106,000 non-displaced Karen in Karen state and Karen ethnic areas to which the Karen National Union has access elsewhere in Burma.[90]

Physical rehabilitation and prosthetics are available to mine survivors through national rehabilitation centers, seven of which were supported by the ICRC.[91] The KNU hospital at Gho Kay in Karen state also provides prostheses.[92]

The Ministry of Health and Ministry of Defense operate six prosthetic/orthotic facilities supported by the ICRC. The prosthetic/orthotic unit of Aung Ban No. 2 military hospital in Southern Shan state and Pyin Oo Lwin No. 1 military hospital in Mandalay division opened to civilian patients with weapon injuries.[93] However, in November 2006 the ICRC was ordered to close its five field offices, making it “…impossible for the organization to carry out most of its assistance and protection work benefiting civilians who live in difficult conditions in border areas.”[94] On 15 March 2007, due to further restrictions imposed by the junta and “near-paralysis” of its operations, the ICRC closed two offices, in Mawlamyine (Mon state) and in Kyaing Tong (Shan state), where mine incidents are frequently reported.[95] The ICRC was “carefully considering whether to keep open its remaining field offices.” Activities to rehabilitate health facilities were halted.[96] As of 15 April 2007, ICRC was unable to provide support to war victims as it had in 2006. From 2002 to 2006 the ICRC provided services to at least 10,605 mine/ERW survivors.[97]

Médecins Sans Frontières announced its withdrawal from Burma in 2005, due to restrictions imposed by the authorities.[98]

There are no known psychosocial support programs in Myanmar. Limited vocational training for people with disabilities is provided by the Ministry for Social Welfare, which runs the Adult Disabled School in Yangon.[99] However, the government provided inadequate funds for schools and programs for the disabled.[100]

The Ministry for Social Welfare, the KNU hospital, Kawthoolei Department of Health and Welfare, Myanmar Council of Churches, Backpack Health Worker Teams, and Free Burma Rangers also provided physical rehabilitation, socioeconomic assistance, or emergency medical services in 2006, but the number of people assisted, including mine/ERW survivors, is unknown.[101]

In 2006-2007, Asia-Pacific Development Center on Disability (APCD) provided refresher trainings in Thailand for participants from Burma on development of self-help groups within existing community-based rehabilitation programs to effect sustainable community development.[102]

At least 4,869 people with disabilities in Burma received services during 2006, including 1,815 mine/ERW survivors, with 23 receiving emergency medical care, 41 receiving continuing medical care, 1,748 receiving physical rehabilitation and at least three receiving socioeconomic reintegration services. ICRC-supported centers assisted 4,826 of these people with disabilities, 65 receiving emergency or continuing medical care (64 mine/ERW casualties), 2,636 receiving prostheses (1,741 mine/ERW survivors), 1,028 receiving orthoses (seven mine/ERW survivors) and 1,097 people gaining better access to prosthetic services through the rural outreach program. The KNU hospital in Gho Kay provided 13 prostheses and the Association for Aid and Relief (AAR) Japan, provided vocational training for 30 people (three mine/ERW survivors).[103]

In 2006 and from January to 15 April 2007, there were no new reports of landmine survivors from Burma receiving medical care at Indian or Bangladeshi facilities. In Thailand, survivors receive medical care at clinics in refugee camps and public district hospitals in the Thai-Burma border provinces. The Mae Tao Clinic, Médecins Sans Frontières, International Rescue Committee, Malteser International-Germany and other aid organizations provide emergency medical referral in Thailand to Burmese conflict casualties who arrive across the border. Prosthetics and rehabilitation are also available at the Mae Tao Clinic, and within refugee camps at prosthetics workshops run by Handicap International.[104]

There are no laws to protect people with disabilities in Burma. In 2003 a draft disability law was submitted to the Ministry of Social Welfare. Since then it has been under review. As of June 2007, Burma had not signed the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities or its Optional Protocol.

Burma’s fifth National Health Plan (2007-2011) includes activities which should benefit people with disabilities, including mine/ERW survivors. Implementation of the plan will be carried out in collaboration with health-related sectors and NGOs.[105] However, there has been an absence of effective monitoring and evaluation in previous plans.[106]

[1] The military junta ruling the country changed the name from Burma to Myanmar. Many ethnic groups within the country still prefer to use the name Burma. In this report, Myanmar is used when referring to the policies and practices of the State Peace and Development Council, and Burma is used otherwise. State and division names are given in their common form, or with the SPDC designation in parentheses, for example, Karenni (Kayah) state.

[2] Explanation of Vote by the Myanmar Delegation on the draft resolution on “Implementation of the Convention on the Prohibition of the Use, Stockpiling, Production and Transfer of Anti-personnel Mines and on their Destruction” (A.C.1/61/L.47), 26 October 2006. The remarks were made after the vote on the resolution in the UNGA First Committee. The remarks were nearly identical to Myanmar’s explanation of its vote in 2005, which was its first public statement on a landmine ban since 1999.

[3] Attending were Myanmar’s Permanent Representative in Geneva, Amb. Nyunt Maung Shein, and three other members of the Geneva Mission.

[4] Meeting of ICBL campaigners with Members of Parliament U Myint Thein and U Hanthar Myint, Information Committee, National League for Democracy, Yangon, 17 January 2007.

[5] Myanmar produces the MM1, which is modeled on the Chinese Type 59 stake-mounted fragmentation mine, the MM2, which is similar to the Chinese Type 58 blast mine, a Claymore-type directional fragmentation mine, and a copy of the US M-14.

[6] Interview with a confidential source associated with the production process, Bangkok, 13 August 2006. As in previous years, several international and national sources in Burma provided information to Landmine Monitor on condition of anonymity.

[7] See Landmine Monitor Report 2004, p. 938. The mines include: Chinese Types 58, 59, 69, 72A; Soviet POMZ-2, POMZ-2M, PMN, PMD-6; US M-14, M-16A1, M-18; Indian/British LTM-73, LTM-76.

[8] UN Human Rights Council, “Report of the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Myanmar, Paulo Sérgio Pinheiro,” A/HRC/4/14, 12 February 2007, paragraphs 56 and 78.

[9] FBR, “Burma Army Attacks Against the Karen People in Northern Karen State, Eastern Burma,” 12 December 2006, received by email 13 December 2006.

[10] FBR, “Burma Army lays landmines to terrorize civilians,” 13 November 2006.

[11] FBR, “Update on Attacks in Nyaunglebin District, Western Karen State,” undated, received by email 12 November 2006.

[12] FBR, “Man Burned Alive by Burma Army troops as they Burn his Village Down,” 1 November 2006, received by email 9 November 2006.

[13] FBR, “Burma Army Launches New Attack, Killing Three People and Displacing 201 Villagers in Mon Township,” 21 March 2007, received by email 24 March 2007.

[14] FBR, “Update of the Current Situation in Northern Karen State,” 3 February 2007, received by email 9 February 2007.

[15] FBR, “Burma Army launches new attacks in Nyaunglebin and Toungoo Districts of Karen State, Burma,” 19 July 2006, received by email 20 July 2006.

[16] KHRG, “Development by Decree,” April 2007, pp. 30-31.

[17] KHRG, “Without Respite,” 13 June 2006, p. 11. The information came from a KNU radio transcript acquired by KHRG.

[18] Ibid, p. 13.

[19] Ibid, p. 12.

[20] Thailand Burma Border Consortium, “Internal Displacement in Eastern Burma,” November 2006, pp. 36, 48.

[21] Interview with development organization working in Shan state, Chiang Mai, March 2007.

[22] Interview with confidential source who provided Landmine Monitor with copies of orders, Bangkok, 31 January 2007.

[23] Thailand Burma Border Consortium, “Internal Displacement in Eastern Burma,” November 2006, p. 52.

[24] Geneva Call, “Three ethnic armed groups from Burma/Myanmar commit to a ban on anti-personnel mines,” Press Release, 16 April 2007.

[25] Geneva Call, “The Chin National Front of Burma renounces the use of anti-personnel mines,” Press Release, 10 August 2006.

[26]NDF, “Position Statement on Landmine Use,” Letter No. -01/2007, 29 January 2007; Geneva Call, “Democratic Alliance of Burma Issues its Position on Landmines,” press release, Geneva, 8 June 2007, www.genevacall.org.

[27]In 2002-2004 Landmine Monitor reports, the PPLO was referred to in error as the PaO People’s Liberation Front (PPLF). Email from Anki Sjoeberg, Programme Officer and Research Coordinator, Geneva Call, 17 July 2007.

[28] The TCBL called on negotiators to include in the final agreement the following: “That both parties clearly and unambiguously mark their minefields on the date of the commencement of a ceasefire; That both parties commit to refrain from any use of the landmine, and that laying of landmines be considered a violation of a ceasefire or an act of aggression; That both parties seek the assistance of the United Nations Mine Action Service and other international agencies in developing mine action plans for implementation prior to the return of any displaced persons.” See www.icbl.org/news/tcbl_burma.

[29] Interview with development organization working in Shan state, Chiang Mai, March 2007.

[30] Lahu National Development Organization, “Undercurrents: Monitoring Development on Burma’s Mekong,” Issue 1, 2005, and Issue 2, 2006.

[31] Interview with aid worker, Chiang Mai, March 2007.

[32] Central Committee for Abuse Control, Union of Myanmar, “Why did U Khon Sa’s MTA Exchange Arms for Peace,” www.myanmar-narcotic.net, accessed 2 April 2007.

[33] KHRG, “Without Respite,” 13 June 2006, pp. 6-7.

[34] KHRG, “Oppression by proxy in Thaton District, Report from the Field,” 21 December 2006, p. 5.

[35] KNPP, “Statement on the use of Landmine,” Statement No. 02/06, 31 August 2006, attached to email from KNPP Foreign Minister Oo Reh to Landmine Monitor, 13 March 2007.

[36] Interview with development organization working in Shan state, Chiang Mai, March 2007.

[37] Order by Northeast Region Deputy Commander to military units in January 2007.

[38] “Four injured in mine explosions in Myanmar,” Xinhua (news agency), 24 January 2007, attributed to the state news agency in Myanmar.

[39] “Burma public servants killed in attack,” Australian Broadcasting Service, 28 July 2006.

[40] “Landmine Blast Kills Sergeant on Front Lines,” Narinjara News, 9 July 2006.

[41] Landmine Monitor has previously noted allegations of use by the Karenni State Nationalities People’s Liberation Front, Karenni National Solidarity Front, Kayin New Land Party and All Burma Students Democratic Front. None of these groups have renounced mine use, but it is not certain if they used mines in this reporting period.

[42] The Hongsawatoi Restoration Party, People’s Defense Forces and a cluster of smaller organizations have essentially ceased to exist. The New Mon State Party, also previously identified as a mine user, has denied recent use, but has not renounced use and earlier admitted to having a stockpile of mines.

[43] Interview with development organization working in Shan state, Chiang Mai, March 2007.

[44] See Landmine Monitor Report 2004, pp. 939-940.

[45] About a dozen armed organizations have agreed verbally to cease hostilities with the SPDC. Although frequently referred to as “ceasefire groups,” none have signed a formal cease-fire protocol leading to a negotiated settlement. All maintain their arms, including any stockpile of antipersonnel landmines.

[46] Statement by Aik Long Kham Mwe, Chairman and General Secretary, LDF, on signing Geneva Call Deed of Commitment, Geneva, 16 April 2007; email from Anki Sjoeberg, Geneva Call, 17 July 2007.

[47] Karen (Kayin) state, Karenni (Kayah) state and Shan state and Tenasserim (Tanintharyi) division contain the most heavily mine-affected areas. A large minefield is in Rakhine state, running the length of the land border with Bangladesh. Some known mined areas exist in Pegu (Bago) and Mandalay divisions, and Mon, Chin and Kachin states. For details of mine/ERW contamination in Burma, see previous editions of Landmine Monitor.

[48] See Landmine Monitor Report 2006, p. 861.

[49] Human Rights Watch (HRW), “Burma: Landmines kill, maim and starve civilians,” www.hrw.org, accessed 17 May 2007; KHRG, “Without Respite,” Thailand, 13 June 2006, p. 11.

[50] KHRG, “Without Respite,” 13 June 2006, p. 6.

[51] HRW-Asia, “Burma: UN must act to end attacks on Karen–army uses landmines to prevent civilians from fleeing conflict,” www.hrw.org, accessed 3 May 2006; KHRG, “Without Respite,” 13 June 2006, p. 11.

[52] UNHCR, “2,000 refugees from Myanmar flee to Thailand after renewed conflict,” Bangkok, 24 May 2006.

[53] Back Pack Health Worker Team, “Chronic Emergency: Health & Human Rights in Eastern Burma,” Thailand, 2006, p. 61. The same data was presented in “Mortality rates in conflict zones in Karen, Karenni and Mon states in eastern Burma,” Tropical Medicine and International Health, Vol. II, No 7, July 2006, pp. 1119-1127.

[54] Thai Action Committee for Democracy in Burma’s Migrant Project & Nonviolence International, “Survey of migrant knowledge of landmines in Burma,” March 2007.

[55] Interview with Thailand-based journalist, 12 January 2006; see Landmine Monitor Report 2006, p. 861.

[56] Kultidda Samabuddhi, “New calls to scrap dam after geologist loses leg,” Bangkok Post, 5 May 2006.

[57] See Landmine Monitor Report 2006, p. 861. In addition to those reported previously, sources in 2007 stated that mined roadsides were found in southern Mon state, between Thanphyuzayat and Ye, and near Mone in eastern Pegu/Bago division.

[58] Some NSAGs and the Tatmadaw (Myanmar Army) have previously reported conducting military demining. In some cases NSAGs remove mines laid by government forces and re-use them.

[59] Interview with Col. Daniel N. Tarter, Defense Attaché, US Embassy, Yangon, 18 January 2007.

[60] International Labor Organization, “Report of the Committee of Experts on the Application of Conventions and Recommendations: Observation concerning Forced Labour Convention,” Myanmar, March 2007, Section II, point 6; see also Landmine Monitor Report 2006, p. 862.

[61] KHRG, “Without Respite,” 13 June 2006, pp. 14, 19.

[62] KHRG, “Bullets and Bulldozers, Report from the Field,” 19 February 2007, p. 8.

[63] KHRG, “Oppression by proxy in Thaton District, Report from the Field,” 21 December 2006, p. 5.

[64] FBR, “Forced Labor Continues in Burma,” 19 December 2006.

[65]FBR, “A Child Crippled, a Twin Dropped and Dies, Human Shields and Mine Sweepers,” 28 November 2006; FBR, “Burma Army Attacks Against the Karen People in Northern Karen state, Eastern Burma,” 12 December 2006.

[66]FBR, “Burma Army launches new attacks in Nyaunglebin and Toungoo Districts of Karen state, Burma, 19 July 2006.

[67] KHRG, “Without Respite,” 13 June 2006, p. 16.

[68] See Landmine Monitor Report 2006, p. 863; see Landmine Monitor Report 2004, p. 941.

[69] Thai Action Committee for Democracy in Burma’s Migrant Project and Nonviolence International, “Survey of migrant knowledge of landmines in Burma,” March 2007.

[70] Information provided by DanChurchAid and CIDKP, 7 and 9 March 2007.

[71] Interview with Saw Eh Kalu Shwe Oo, Director, Kawthoolei Department of Health and Welfare, Mae Sot, Thailand, 9 March 2007.

[72] See Landmine Monitor Report 2004, pp. 941-942; Landmine Monitor Report 2005, pp. 684-685; Landmine Monitor Report 2006, pp. 863-864.

[73] ICRC, “Special Report-Mine Action 2006,” Geneva, May 2007, p. 14.

[74]See report on Thailand in this edition of Landmine Monitor.

[75] 2006 casualty data reported in this section was collated from: confidential interviews by Landmine Monitor in March 2006; email from NGO working on Thailand-Burma border, 20 March 2006; interview with Dr. Cynthia Maung and Manager of Prosthetic and Orthotic Department, Mae Tao Clinic, Tak, 8 March 2006; Surgery Statistics, Mae Tao Clinic, Tak, emailed to Landmine Monitor, 1 March 2007; response to Landmine Monitor Questionnaire by Bang-on Janyakan, Mae Sot General Hospital, Mae Sot, 27 March 2007; response to Landmine Monitor Questionnaire by Thanita Kusawadee, Social Worker, Srisungval Hospital, Mae Hong Son, 21 March 2007; email from Somsak Thanaborikon, International Rescue Committee (IRC), Mae Sot, 10 March 2006; email from Imbert Matthee, Clear Path International, US, 1 May 2006; media articles 1 January 2006-31 December 2006.

[76] See Landmine Monitor Report 2006, p. 864.

[77] Landmine Monitor analysis of media reports 1 January-5 May 2007.

[78] FBR, “Four Villagers Killed, Three Shot Point Blank, as 2,000 Flee Burma Army Attacks,” 7 April 2007.

[79]World Health Organization (WHO), “Country Health Profile–Myanmar, www.searo.who.int, accessed 10 June 2007.

[80] See Landmine Monitor Report 2005, p. 685.

[81] “Rights group urges UN to protect Myanmar civilians,” Agence France-Presse (Bangkok), 3 May 2006; Andrew Harding, “The resigned victims of Burma’s junta,” BBC (Burma), 15 April 2006; “Burmese army reportedly launches “largest” offensive against Karens in 10 years,” BBC (Thailand), 26 April 2006.

[82] Information provided by DanChurchAid and CIDKP, 7 and 9 March 2007.

[83]ICRC, “Annual Report 2006,” Geneva, May 2007, p. 187; ICRC, “Special Report-Mine Action 2006,” Geneva, April 2007, p. 14.

[84] US Government Accountability Office, “International Organizations Assistance Programs Constrained in Burma,” GAO-07-457, 6 April 2007.

[85] US Department of State, “Country Reports on Human Rights Practices-2006: Burma,” Washington, DC, 6 March 2007.

[86] See Landmine Monitor Report 2006, p. 866.

[87] WHO, “Country Health Profile–Myanmar,” www.searo.who.int, accessed 9 June 2007.

[88] US Department of State, “Country Reports on Human Rights Practices-2006: Burma,” Washington, DC, 6 March 2007.

[89] US Government Accountability Office, “International Organizations Assistance Programs Constrained in Burma,” 6 April 2007, GAO-07-457.

[90] Confidential interviews by Landmine Monitor in March 2007.

[91] ICRC Physical Rehabilitation Program, “Annual Report 2006,” Geneva, April 2007, p. 29; see also Landmine Monitor Report 2006, p. 866.

[92] Interview with Saw Hla Henry, Secretary-General, CIDKP, Mae Sot, 9 March 2007.

[93] Interview with Saw Hla Henry, CIDKP, Mae Sot, 9 March 2007; ICRC, “Annual Report 2006,” Geneva, May 2007, pp. 185, 187-188; interview with Yuko Yokotobi, Country Representative, Association for Aid and Relief Japan, Yangon, 20 March 2006.

[94] ICRC, “Myanmar: ICRC pressed to close field offices,” 27 November 2006.

[95] “ICRC closes two Myanmar offices over junta limits,” Reuters (Geneva), 15 March 2007.

[96] ICRC, “Myanmar: No progress in talks, ICRC closes offices,” 15 March 2007.

[97] ICRC, “Annual Report 2006,” Geneva, May 2007, p. 187.

[98] “Aid Agency To Withdraw from Burma,” The Irrawaddy, January 2006, p. 6.

[99] See Landmine Monitor Report 2006, p. 867.

[100] US Department of State, “Country Reports on Human Rights Practices-2006: Burma,” Washington, DC, 6 March 2007.

[101] For information on these organizations, see Landmine Monitor Report 2006, pp. 866-867.

[102] APCD, “Refresher Training on SHG of Persons with Disabilities towards Rights-based and Sustainable Community Development,18 July-3 August 2006,” Newsletter 17, 26 April 2007; APCD, “Refresher Training to Strengthen Community-based Rehabilitation (CBR) through a Participatory Comprehensive Approach,” 1 May 2007; APCD, “APCD Activities in Brief (January-March 2007),” 25 April 2007, www.apcdproject.org, all accessed 9 June 2007.

[103] ICRC, “Annual Report 2006,” Geneva, May 2007, pp. 185, 187-188; interview with Saw Hla Henry, CIDKP, Mae Sot, 9 March 2007; interview with Yuko Yokotobi, AAR Japan, Yangon, 20 March 2006.

[104] See report on Thailand in this edition of Landmine Monitor.

[105] Union of Myanmar, National Health Committee, “Health Policy, Plans and Legislation,” p. 14.

[106] WHO, “Country Health Profile–Myanmar,” www.searo.who.int, accessed 9 June 2007.