Thursday, June 14, 2012

Notions of Peace shattered in the Ta’ang (Palaung) self-autonomous areas

On May 26th 2012, ethnic rebel troops blocked the road from Mantong to Namtu, the local authorities failed to keep the situation under control and as a result local Mantong residents are finding it difficult to maintain their livelihoods and have suffered price increases from the road blockage and continuing conflict.
In response to the actions of the rebel group, the Burmese army deployed 200 armed soldiers to block access to the road between Mantong to Namhsan . Due to their actions local peoples’ rights were impinged upon as it restricted their right to travel and to earn their living.
The impact of the blocking every possible access route to the Town affects people from both the urban and rural areas who are worrying for coming challenges with regards to the ongoing civil war. At the same time, they are faced with rising of prices of commodities for their survival.
On May 27th, one of the residents from Manton town spoke about their personal situation “5 local trucks were driving along the Mantong – Namtu road when they encountered the rebel group and they had to pay 50,000 Kyats for each tuck to continue to Lashio”.
Not only did the Burmese army control the road between Mantong to Namhsan but also the road between Mantong to Moe Make were their armed troops were in transit in order to control as much territory around Mantong as possible.
Mantong Town is the former headquarters for the Palaung State Liberation Army (PSLA). It was one of the two provincial towns listed under self autonomous areas since 2010. Infantry Military Battalion No.130 is located in the town and it is a base for the training for the local’ militia.



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