… which means no national survivor network either.
The new Burmese government needs to design and implement a national program to eliminate the landmine risk if it is serious about genuine political reconciliation with the ethnic minorities in Burma.
Despite democratic reforms and moves to sign ceasefires with non-state armed groups, Burma is still not a signatory to the 1997 Ottawa Convention banning the use of land mines, and no substantial moves have been made on demining in conflict zones along its borders. Without a timeline and genuine political dialogue between the government and the ethnic minorities, the safety of villagers and displaced people continues to be threatened, and it is too dangerous for refugees to return.
Although the government claims it is no longer using antipersonnel mines in conflict-affected areas, a new report by the International Campaign to Ban Landmines (ICBL) alleges both the Burmese military and non-state armed groups are still employing these weapons. The latest report produced by the ICBL states that landmine use in Burma has decreased over the years; there are fewer incidents of new antipersonnel mine use, and what use does occur is in more limited geographic areas. As of 2011 there were several reports of landmines still being used, including by government forces, border guard forces, and non-state armed groups, including the Karen National Liberation Army (KNLA). The ICBL reports that there were over 381 documented landmine casualties in 2011, although the actual number is likely to be much higher.