Chin Activist Praised For Guide In BBC Documentary
22 April 2010: Ms Cheery Zahau, former Coordinator of WLC (Women’s League of Chinland), has been hailed among the Chin people for her brave work and taking risks in guiding the BBC team into military-isolated Burma’s Chin State.
A BBC documentary by Simon Reeve was broadcast last Sunday as parts of the series Tropic of Cancer, revealing fresh evidence of SPDC’s brutalities and abuses inflicted upon the Chin people along the Indian-Burma border.
Thanking the BBC team for their interest and efforts in visiting the ‘forgotten land’ of Burma, Cheery Zahau said: “”If we don’t speak up, if we don’t tell the stories of the people under this repressive military regime, then no-one will know what’s happening, and if they don’t know they will not do anything.”
Chin human rights acitivist Cheery Zahau took the BBC team into Burma across the Indian border, risking capture and arrest at the hands of Burma’s army.
One comment by a Chin email group member described her as ‘a Chin heroine’, praising the Chin activist for her ‘unfaltering’ commitment to serving her people and land amid fears and danger.
In early 2007, the New Light of Myanmar, an official daily newspaper in Burma, accused political activists including Cheery Zahau of making reports against the SPDC days after a report Unsafe State: State-sanctioned sexual violence against Chin women in Burma was published by WLC (Women’s League of Chinland).
In June 2008, Cheery Zahau along with other ethnic women from Burma met British Prime Minister Gordon Brown at 10 Downing Street in London on Aung San Suu Kyi’s 63rd birthday. In 2007, She also testified at the 51st Session of Commission on the Status of Women at the UN Headquarters building in New York, highlighting the ‘terrifying’ situations facing Chin women under the military dictatorship.
As a member of the Chin delegation visiting Europe in 2008, Cheery Zahau met with officials from DFID (Department for International Development) and UK goverment, raising awareness and funds for mautam-hit victims in Chin State.
Van Biak Thang