Mon farmers seek justice for land rights
10 October 2013: Farmers in Mon State made an appeal to the government of Burma demanding justice for unfair land confiscation and acquisition in their areas.
The Human Rights Foundation of Monland (HURFOM) said in its new report that Mon farmers still fought for their land confiscated by the military regimes and that private companies continued to exploit farming families.
Nai Aue Mon, HURFOM’s documentation coordinator, said: “Based on the findings from our field research, we can say that several problems and obstacles exist for local farmers who want to reclaim their lands.”
“It is quite disappointing to see that the current civilian government seems unable to resolve both past land abuses by the former military government and new land conflicts perpetrated by companies in the Kyaikmayaw area of Mon State.”
The report entitled Disputed Territory: Mon farmers’ fight against unjust land acquisition and barriers to their progress documented cases of farmers appealing against past land confiscation in Ye Township and ongoing misconduct by various investors in Kyaikmayaw Township.
One of the interviewees said in the report: “I want to provide a livelihood for my family. So when my plantation was confiscated I was like a person with broken legs.”
HURFOM criticised that the new legislation passed in 2012 didn’t guarantee farmers’ rights to land when they faced unjust land acquisition or prevent future injustice regarding land issues.
It called on all relevant authorities to change the course of Burma’s history of land abuse and stand behind farmers that have crafted the country’s social and economic landscape for generations.
Founded in 1995 by a group of young Mons, HURFOM is committed to seeking truth and justice for a peaceful democratic transition in Burma.#