MAKING A DIFFERENCE: FIGHT TRAFFICKING IN BURMA (MYANMAR)

In the global human trafficking in persons report (2012) lately issued by U.S. government, Burma (Myanmar) is on the Tier-2 watch list, which indicates that the country is involved in conditions of forced labor and sex trafficking. Being a citizen of Burma, I am distressed to see the truths in my country’s deplorable situations: countless numbers of undocumented migrations, mistreated human rights, sex trafficking to neighboring countries and peculiarly, under-aged children being trafficked as child soldiers.

Despite being rich with natural resources, strong agriculture base, and home of 60 million Burmese people, Burma (Myanmar) is known for spending over 40% of annual Government budget in military expenditure, compared to only 1.3% in health and education sectors. Bad economy and lack of land ownership force farmer communities to be undocumented immigrant workers in neighboring countries. Women and children are highly trafficked through country’s borders where illiteracy rate is high and human rights are ignored. Most importantly, orphans, street children and young monks are targeted as trafficking victims to serve as child soldiers and porters.

Hence, I condemn seeing this misery as a citizen, being part of Burma, but realize truths will make a difference.  At last, transparency and justice are needed to discuss the elimination of unlawful practices and criminal prosecution.

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2 Responses

  1. I am a schoolteacher and will be showing this to a group of 16-18 year old students (as part of an Amnesty int group – I want them to look in depth at some of the issues) . I am sure after seeing this they will want to do something concrete. (In addition to the A. I. petition). Can you suggest something?

  2. Hi, I wrote this article based on trafficking in persons report (2012) – (http://www.state.gov/j/tip/rls/tiprpt/2012/). There are many developing countries like Burma (1 of 13 worst human trafficked countries in the world), facing above-mentioned issues.

    To my experience, Burma is an interesting case because of its geography, lying between World’s economic powers (China, India and also Thailand). Eminent human trafficking and economic exploitation are happening inside and outside the country, in terms of sex tourism, forced army recruitment, undocumented immigration and unprotected citizenship to Burmese people.

    Do tell me if you need to know more.

    Regards,
    Tharaphy

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