News / Asia

Post-Ceasefire, No Signs of Peace in Burma's Kachin

One Year after Ceasefire Collapse, No Signs of Peace in Burma's Kachin Statei
|| 0:00:00
X
Matt Saunders
July 19, 2012 1:59 PM
A year has passed since a cease-fire collapsed between ethnic Kachin forces and Burma's government troops and there are still there are no signs of peace. Tens of thousands people have fled as the Kachin Independence Organization, or KIO, fights for greater autonomy and control over their resources. Matt Saunders reports from Burma’s Kachin State.]
Matt Saunders
KACHIN STATE, Burma — A year has passed since a cease-fire collapsed between ethnic Kachin forces and Burma's government troops and there are still there are no signs of peace. Tens of thousands people have fled as the Kachin Independence Organization, or KIO, fights for greater autonomy and control over their resources.
 
People who fled their homes for this temporary camp in Burma's Kachin state are bracing for the monsoon season, worrying about food shortages.
 
Despite an increase in foreign aid flowing into Burma's capital, Kachin groups say little assistance is reaching the conflict zone.

May Li Aung heads Wun Pawng Ninghto, an umbrella group of eight local aid agencies. "All of the international community and funding agencies want to help inside of Burma," she explained. "But this is non-government-controlled area and they are also afraid to come here."

Although some supplies have been allowed into KIO-controlled areas, that is not the case in refugee camps on the Chinese side of the border.

A recent Human Rights Watch report criticized China for a lack of assistance to the refugees in Yunnan and called on authorities to give aid workers access.

Mui Hpu Kaw cares for seven grandchildren, while her four sons fight for the Kachin Independence Army on the Burmese side of the border. She says the uncertain future is almost unbearable. "I only wait to hear the words, 'Let's go home, the fighting's stopped now'. Every time I see someone come to visit the camp, I'm hoping they will say we can go home now," she said.  "I pray that I won't die here.”

Many observers are skeptical of a resolution anytime soon.
 
Former activist Tun Kyaw Nyein, the son of former deputy Prime Minister U Kyaw Nyein, is now a member of the independent, pro-democracy Burma Strategy Group.  He says even Aung San Suu Kyi is treading carefully on the conflict. “I understand fully why she is careful in the way she brings up the topics and addresses the issues because there is also the risk of appearing to favor one side or the other when things are so precarious," he stated. "It is going to take some time and its going to take all parties including Aung San Su Kyi and U Thein Sein and the Kachin leaders to overcome this long-standing mistrust.”

In the meantime, the displaced Kachin population waits in these growing camps for a resolution to the conflict that drags on -- despite the dramatic changes happening in other parts of the country.

You May Like

British Fighters On Frontline of ISIS Information War

It’s estimated that several hundred British citizens are fighting for Islamic State alongside other foreign Jihadists More

Audio Hit Song Delivers Ebola Message in Liberia

'Ebola in Town' has danceable beat, while also delivering serious message about avoiding infection More

Video New Technology Gives Surgeons Unprecedented Views of Patients’ Bodies

Technology offers real-time, interactive, medical visualization and is multi-dimensional More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Native Bees May Help Save Cropsi
X
Deborah Block
August 22, 2014 12:23 AM
U.S. President Barack Obama has called for a federal strategy to promote the health of bees that have been declining. The honeybee has been waning due to parasites, disease and pesticides. Wild bees may be used to take over their role as crop pollinators. Scientists first need to learn a lot more about wild bees, says biologist Sam Droege, who is pioneering the first national inventory on native bees. VOA’s Deborah Block went to his research laboratory in Beltsville, Maryland, to bring you more.
Video

Video Native Bees May Help Save Crops

U.S. President Barack Obama has called for a federal strategy to promote the health of bees that have been declining. The honeybee has been waning due to parasites, disease and pesticides. Wild bees may be used to take over their role as crop pollinators. Scientists first need to learn a lot more about wild bees, says biologist Sam Droege, who is pioneering the first national inventory on native bees. VOA’s Deborah Block went to his research laboratory in Beltsville, Maryland, to bring you more.
Video

Video US Defense Officials Plan for Long-Term Strategy to Contain Islamic State

U.S. defense officials say American air strikes in Iraq have helped deter Islamic State militants for the time being, but that a broad international effort is needed to defeat the extremists permanently. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel warned Thursday that the group formerly known as the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant, or ISIL, is better organized, and financially and militarily stronger than any other known terrorist group. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Drug-Resistant Malaria Spreads in Southeast Asia

On Thailand’s border with Myanmar, also known as Burma, a malaria research and treatment clinic is stepping up efforts to eliminate a drug-resistant form of the parasite - before it spreads abroad. Steve Sandford reports from Mae Sot, Thailand.
Video

Video Gaza Conflict, Hamas Popularity Challenge Abbas

The Palestinian unity government of Mahmoud Abbas has failed to convince Hamas to agree to Egyptian-negotiated terms with Israel on a Gaza cease-fire. VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports on what the Gaza conflict means for President Abbas, with whom U.S. officials have worked for years on a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Video

Video Nigeria's 'Nollywood' Movie Industry Rolls in High Gear

Twenty years after its birth in a video shop in Lagos, Nigeria's "Nollywood" is one of the most prolific film industries on earth. Despite low budgets and whirlwind production schedules, Nigerian films are wildly popular in Africa and industry professionals say they hope, in the future, their films will be as great in quality as they are in quantity. Heather Murdock has more for VOA from Lagos.
Video

Video UN Launches 'Biggest Aid Operation in 30 Years' in Iraq

The United Nations has launched what it describes as one of the biggest aid operations in 30 years in northern Iraq, as hundreds of thousands of refugees flee the extremist Sunni militant group calling itself the Islamic State. As Kurdish and Iraqi forces battle the Sunni insurgents, the fighting has forced more people to flee their homes. Kurdish authorities say the international community must act now to avert a humanitarian catastrophe. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Cambodian American Hip Hop Artist Sings of Personal Struggles

A growing underground movement of Cambodian American hip hop artists is rapping about the struggles of living in urban America. Most, if not all of them, are refugees or children of refugees who came to the United States from Cambodia to escape the Khmer Rouge genocide of the 1970s. Through their music, the artists hope to give voice to immigrants who have been struggling quietly for years. Elizabeth Lee reports from Long Beach, California.
Video

Video African Media Tries to Educate Public About Ebola

While the Ebola epidemic continues to claim lives in West Africa, information technology specialists, together with radio and TV reporters, are battling misinformation and prejudice about the disease - using social media to educate the public about the deadly virus. VOA’s George Putic has more.

AppleAndroid