Paletwa: Tribal youths are being recruited by the Burmese Army on the Indo-Burma border from the southern part of Chin State by providing opportunities including food to the youth’s families, said a local source.
The army stationed in border areas has been recruiting many tribal youths including Khami, Mro and Chin to serve in the Burmese Army by providing opportunities including food to the youth’s family members, the source said.
If a youth agrees to join the army, it gives 100,000 kyats cash to him as well as food supplies like rice, oil, and salt, chilly to the family of the youth, he said.
The recruitment is being done by some battalions including LB 35, LIB 289 and LIB 550 on the Indo-Burma border.
Three Khami youths from Prin Dai village in Paletwa Township joined the LB 34 last week after they were given such opportunities by the army. They were identified as Pro Aung, (21) son of late Kho Ret, Tun Lin (19) son of Owe Lan and Rarmu (20) son of U Kri Daung.
Village residents said that families have been facing famine since the beginning of the rainy season. So they are pushing the youths to join the army in order to get food.
Even though the army authorities are providing opportunities to the youths, many tribal youths are unwilling to join the army.
“We have bitter experiences regarding the Burmese Army. The army has used our people as porters, tortured and sometimes soldiers have raped women in the area for decades. Therefore many youths refused to join the army,” an elder said.
According to source close to the army, the number of youths joining the army has fallen in recent years. So the army authorities are trying to lure and recruit Burmese youths by providing many opportunities.
At present, some tribal families on the Indo-Burma border are facing a famine situation and there is shortage of rice. So the army authorities are taking advantage to recruit youths by supplying food to their family members.
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