Mine Ban Policy

Last updated: 09 October 2018


The Republic of the Union of Myanmar has not acceded to the Mine Ban Treaty.[1]

Myanmar continued to express its support for the Mine Ban Treaty in the reporting period, but did not take any steps to accede to it. Myanmar continued to deny reports that government forces used antipersonnel landmines in 2017 and into 2018, despite evidence from the United Nations (UN) and others. (See Use section below)

In June 2018, a Myanmar Ministry of Defense official told the International Campaign to Ban Landmines (ICBL) that key stakeholders, particularly the military, are reviewing the possibility of Myanmar’s accession to the Mine Ban Treaty.[2]

In late May 2018, Myanmar’s Minister for International Cooperation, U Kyaw Tin, told the treaty’s special envoy, Prince Mired Raad Zeid Al-Hussein of Jordan, that Myanmar would consider joining the treaty after the successful implementation of a nationwide ceasefire agreement by all parties.[3] Prince Mired promoted the treaty with government officials and NGOs during his three-day visit to Myanmar.

In December 2017, Myanmar told Mine Ban Treaty States Parties that, “Myanmar supports the norms of the Convention.” It called the treaty “the cornerstone of the effort to end the suffering and casualties caused by anti-personnel mines.”[4] Its representative, Ambassador U San Lwin, said Myanmar’s participation as an observer in the Mine Ban Treaty’s Sixteenth Meeting of States Parties in Vienna, Austria in December 2017, reflected “our keen interest in the work of the Convention.” He claimed the “Myanmar Armed Forces is [sic] no longer using the landmines while safeguarding the life and property of its people in internal conflicts.”[5]

At the UN General Assembly (UNGA) in October 2017, Myanmar said that the relevant officials were reviewing the Mine Ban Treaty to gain a better understanding of it with a view to the country joining in future.[6] It said the Mine Ban Treaty prevents the “indiscriminate use of landmines…which can lead to vulnerability and serious humanitarian impact.”[7] However, the treaty prohibits any use of antipersonnel landmines by any actor in any circumstance.

Previously, in June 2017, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Ministry of Defense officials told the ICBL that the government was actively considering acceding to the Mine Ban Treaty, but could not provide an estimated timeline for when Myanmar might join.[8]

On 4 April 2018, the International Day for Mine Action, the European Union’s representative to Myanmar, Ambassador Kristian Schmidt, called on “all sides—the government, the Tatmadaw and the ethnic groups alike—to do the right thing for the country, for unity, for peace and justice for the next generations: stop laying mines, ban them and let’s start the clean-up for a peaceful and prosperous future.”[9]

Ambassador Schmidt made the call at an event in Myanmar’s capital Naypyitaw organized by UNICEF, the Ministry of Social Welfare, Relief and Resettlement and members of the national Mine Risk Working Group. During the event, UNICEF also called on the government of Myanmar to join the Mine Ban Treaty.[10] Myanmar abstained from voting on UNGA Resolution 72/53 on 4 December 2017, which promotes universalization of the Mine Ban Treaty. Since 1997, Myanmar has abstained from voting on this annual UNGA resolution supporting the Mine Ban Treaty.[11]

Myanmar has participated as an observer in several Meetings of States Parties to the Mine Ban Treaty, most recently in December 2017, but it has never attended a Mine Ban Treaty Review Conference.[12] Myanmar participated in intersessional meetings of Mine Ban Treaty in Geneva in 2013, 2014, and 2016.

In January 2018, Mine-Free Myanmar,[13] (an initiative launched by the ICBL in 2003 to promote the landmine ban in Myanmar, including by calling for a halt to use of antipersonnel mines) held a press conference in Yangon to launch Landmine Monitor 2017’s country report on Myanmar and distributed 1,500 Burmese-language translations of the report.[14] In June 2018, Landmine Monitor worked with the UN to produce and disseminate an infographic outlining the impact of landmines in Myanmar.[15]

Production, stockpiling, and transfer

Myanmar Defense Products Industries known as “Ka Pa Sa” is a state enterprise located at Ngyaung Chay Dauk in western Pegu (Bago) division that produces fragmentation and blast antipersonnel mines, including mines with low metal content.[16] In September 2016, government authorities in Myanmar confirmed that landmines were still being produced.[17]

Myanmar has also imported or otherwise received, obtained, and used antipersonnel mines manufactured in China, India, Italy, Russia (and the former Soviet Union), and the United States (US), as well as mines of unknown origin.[18]

There is no publicly available information on the types or quantities of antipersonnel mines in government possession, however Myanmar is believed to possess a significant stockpile.

Myanmar is not known to have exported or antipersonnel mines.[19]

Production, transfer, and stockpiling by non-state armed groups

Various non-state armed groups (NSAGs) in Myanmar have produced antipersonnel mines, including the Kachin Independence Army (KIA), Karen National Liberation Army (KNLA), Democratic Karen Benevolence Army (DKBA), Karenni Army, and United Wa State Army.

NSAGs have manufactured blast and fragmentation mines from locally available materials, sometimes referred to as improvised explosive devices or “IEDs.” Victim-activated explosive devices are considered improvised antipersonnel mines prohibited by the Mine Ban Treaty.

KNLA forces have reportedly received training to manufacture and use bounding antipersonnel mines.[20] Some NSAGs have also made Claymore-type directional fragmentation mines and antivehicle mines with antihandling devices.

Armed groups in Myanmar have also acquired mines by removing mines laid by others, seizing government (Tatmadaw) stocks, and by obtaining them from the clandestine arms market.[21]


Since the publication of its first annual report in 1999, Landmine Monitor has consistently documented new use of antipersonnel mines by government armed forces known as “Tatmadaw” and by various NSAGs. This mine use continued during this reporting period, which covers calendar year 2017 and the first three-quarters of 2018.

New use by government forces

Landmine Monitor 2017 documented Tatmadaw use of antipersonnel mines along the country’s border with Bangladesh in 2017, particularly during August and September. Since then, additional reports from various sources provide evidence of further government mine use along the border, but the full extent of mine use is unknown as most border areas are inaccessible to media, NGOs and others from civil society.

In June 2018, Landmine Monitor reviewed photographs shared by theKIA and provided to a humanitarian group working in Myanmar. The photographs show mines that KIA forces reported they had cleared from the villages of Gauri Bum, Man Htu Bum, and Uloi Bai in Danai township, Kachin state. One photograph shows approximately 80 M14 and MM2 antipersonnel mines with markings indicating they were manufactured by the government of Myanmar. The KIA claimed that the Tatmadaw laid the mines in April and May 2018, when its forces left the villages they previously occupied. It said that two of its soldiers were injured while clearing the mines. It said that the KIA also cleared 20 landmines in Injang Yang township that it alleged were laid by Tatmadaw’s Light Infantry Division 33 before its withdrawal from the area.[22]

Landmine Monitor showed the KIA photographs to a Myanmar Ministry of Defense official in June 2018 and requested comment. The official denied government responsibility for using the antipersonnel mines and said the ones photographed could be copies of government-made mines made and planted by NSAGs.[23] He also said the photographs showed some antivehicle mines and commented that government forces do not use antivehicle mines against NSAGs because NSAG do not use vehicles.[24]

Previous Use by Government Forces

In September 2017, Landmine Monitor reported that several organizations independently published evidence that showed Myanmar government forces were using antipersonnel landmines along the country’s border with Bangladesh. The mine use began in late August, when Myanmar government forces began a campaign of ethnic cleansing against the Rohingya population, causing more than 700,000 people to flee to neighboring Bangladesh. Landmine Monitor reported the newly mined areas were located between Maungdaw township in Myanmar and Bandarban district in Bangladesh, two major land crossing routes between the countries.[25]

An October 2017 report by the UN Office of the High Commissioner on Human Rights found that “mines were deliberately planted by the Myanmar security forces after 23 August 2017 along the border in an attempt to prevent the Rohingya refugees from returning to Myanmar. Information received by the Team referred to the use of landmines and to incidents of people stepping on mines whilst fleeing, or attempting to return to Myanmar to check on other missing family members from 25 August onwards. They were either killed instantly, or suffered serious injuries. The Cox’s Bazar District Hospital and other medical facilities confirmed the treatment of mine injuries.”[26]

A report issued by the Independent International Fact-Finding Mission on Myanmar—established by the Human Rights Council in March 2017—found the Mission had “reasonable grounds to conclude that landmines were planted by the Tatmadaw, both in the border regions as well as within northern Rakhine state, as part of the “clearance operations” with the intended or foreseeable effect of injuring or killing Rohingya civilians fleeing to Bangladesh. Further, it seems likely that new anti-personnel mines were placed in border areas as part of a deliberate and planned strategy of dissuading Rohingya refugees from attempting to return to Myanmar.”[27]

On 21 November 2017, a wild elephant died in Bangladesh’s Bandarban district and Bangladeshi authorities attributed the cause of death to a landmine emplaced along the border.[28] Myanmar military forces used landmines along the Bangladesh border earlier in 2017. In July 2017, three farmers were killed and one injured by a mine allegedly laid by the Myanmar military at Pyanug Paik village in Maungdaw township.[29] In May, Amnesty International reported on Myanmar military forces use of antipersonnel landmines in areas of Kachin and northern Shan states.[30] In April 2017, the Border Guard Forces under the command of the Myanmar Army warned locals from using the road from Meh Th’Waw to Myaing Gyi Ngu because the edges of the road had been mined.[31] In April 2016, four Rohingya from Maungdaw township were injured and one killed by a landmine after they were hired by the Myanmar Army to work on the border fence near border pillar 61. The injured were treated Buthidang Hospital.[32]

Past use of antipersonnel mines along this border has been documented in previous Landmine Monitor reports.[33]

There allegations of new mine use by Myanmar military forces in other parts of the country during 2018, but Landmine Monitor was not able to independently verify these claims and determine the forces responsible.

In February 2018, the Indian Army reportedly cleared landmines laid along its border with Chin state of Myanmar that it claimed were laid sometime between late 2017 and early 2018 by either the Myanmar Army of NSAG the Arakan Army. The mines claimed casualties in 2017 and 2018.[34]

Atrocity/forced labour mine clearance

Landmine Monitor has found evidence that military forces in Myanmar have continued the practice of using humans to detonate landmines in 2018 in grave violation of international humanitarian and human rights law.[35]

A September 2018 report by the Independent International Fact-Finding Mission on Myanmar received multiple, detailed accounts of forced laborers being made to walk at the front of the Tatmadaw columns when travelling through the forest in areas of active conflict. Several victims of forced labor said they witnessed other civilians being injured or killed by landmines and told the Mission that they were put at the front to act as “human mine sweepers.”[36]

In May 2018, the Kachin Women’s Association Thailand reported that villagers from Lai Nawng Khu Kachin state’s Hpakant township fled their homes on 11 April 2018 after a rumor of armed confrontations between Tatmadaw and KIA forces. After spending two nights in the forest, Tatmadaw forces from Light Infantry Battalion 424 found and questioned them. Then the Tatmadaw troops ordered the villagers to walk in front of them in single file. A villager at the front of the column named Po Shan was subsequently wounded by a landmine and villagers saw him carried away, but is not known if he survived.[37]

In May 2018, Sai Htun Nyan, a Shan state Member of Parliament for Kyaukme Township claimed that villagers from Taw Sang in his township of Kyaukme were forced to walk ahead of a Myanmar Army infantry column on 3 May 2018, resulting in landmine casualties. He reportedly stated that people from in his constituency had provided him with accounts detailing how they were forced to walk in front of military units through minefields. He said the Myanmar Army employs this practice the most but NSAG have also done so.[38] In November 2017, according to testimony collected by the Karen Human Rights Group, a resident of T’Kwee Klah village in Karen state’s Hlaingbwe township served as a porter for the Border Guard Forces (BGF) for almost two months and was made to walk in front of BGF soldiers through mined areas.[39] In October 2017, according to testimonies collected by the Karen Human Rights Group, BGF Battalions 1013 and 1014 forced residents of Kwee Law Ploh, Meh Th’Moo, Kler Day, Yaw Poh, and Kloo Htaw villages in Hlaingbwe township to work as porters in mined areas.[40]

Use by non-state armed groups

Many non-state armed groups (NSAGs) have used antipersonnel mines in Myanmar since 1999. Some previously known mine users no longer exist or no longer use mines. However, there were several reports that the four NSAG comprising the Northern Alliance group—KIA, Kokang Army, Arakan Army and the Ta’ang National Liberation Army (TNLA)—used antipersonnel landmines in their operation against Myanmar armed forces during the reporting period. Mine use by the Democratic Karen Benevolent Army (DKBA) and Karen National Liberation Army (KNLA) was also recorded.

Most new use was reported in Kachin, Kayin, Rakhine, and Shan states:

  • In June 2018, residents of Kyaukme township in Shan state claimed that TNLA forces had warned them not to travel in a certain area due to the danger posed by newly emplaced landmines.[41]
  • In March-April 2018, KNLA forces laid mines in Kay Pu and Ler Mu Plaw after increased Tatmadaw activity in the area and villagers lost several livestock as a result, according to a local NGO.[42]
  • In April 2018, the KIA announced that it was laying landmines in Kachin state’s Hukawng valley in Tanai township.[43]
  • In December 2017, Myanmar’s Ministry of Defense claimed that the KIA had laid mines in the townships of Bhamo, Hpakant, Mohnyin and Tanai in Kachin state.[44]
  • In November 2017, the Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG) received information that a village leader was killed by a landmine in Hlaingbwe Township in mid-2016 after a DKBA splinter group laid mines in the path to a meeting it had scheduled with the village leader.[45]
  • In June 2017, a local administrator in Tarlaw in Myitkyina township in Kachin state said the KIA had laid landmines near the town, causing civilian casualties as well as the loss of livestock.[46]

In 2011, the government of Myanmar announced its intent to conclude peace agreements with NSAGs operating in the country. On 15 October 2015, eight ethnic armed groups signed a nationwide ceasefire accord with the government, committing to “end planting of mines” and “cooperate on the process of clearing all landmines.” All the groups—two factions of the Karen National Union, the Restoration Council for Shan State, the Arakan Liberation Party, the Pao National Liberation Organization, the All Burma Students Democratic Front, the Chin National Front, and the Democratic Karen Benevolent Army—had previously used landmines.[47] In February 2018, the New Mon State Party and the Lahu Democratic Union joined the nationwide ceasefire accord, bringing the number of ethnic armed groups in the agreement to ten.[48]

In the past, some armed groups and former armed groups unilaterally renounced antipersonnel mine use by signing the Deed of Commitment administered by the Swiss NGO Geneva Call.[49] The Palaung State Liberation Front (PSLF) signed the Deed of Commitment in 2007 and its armed wing, the TNLA, has previously promised to refrain from mine use.[50] In June 2017, the TNLA denied allegations of new mine use and affirmed that the TNLA has not used landmines since signing the Deed of Commitment.[51]

Responses to new landmine use

In the reporting period, various Myanmar government officials either admitted or denied that government forces are using antipersonnel landmines. At the treaty’s Sixteenth Meeting of States Parties in December 2017 the Myanmar government representative stated that “the “Myanmar Armed Forces is no longer using the landmines while safeguarding the life and property of its people in internal conflicts.”[52] However, in June 2018, a Ministry of Defense official told Landmine Monitor that the Myanmar armed forces are still using antipersonnel landmines, but said the use is strictly for “self-defense” purposes and always “well-mapped.”[53]

Myanmar’s NSAGs tend to blame government forces army or each other for using antipersonnel mines.[54] However, the KIA defended its production and use of improvised landmines in the past year. Information Chief Colonel Naw Bu said in a January 2018 media interview that the KIA use antipersonnel mines “on paths approaching our frontline camps and around our headquarters.” He justified the use, stating, “We only plant mines in the conflict area and do not plant mines in places where civilians move.”[55]

The use of landmines in Myanmar has been widely condemned.

At the Human Rights Council on 11 September 2017, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein stated that he was “appalled by reports that the Myanmar authorities have now begun to lay landmines along the border with Bangladesh.” In March 2017, the UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Myanmar called on all parties to “immediately cease using landmines.” In August 2018, the UN Human Rights Council reported on how the presence of landmines has impeded the safe return of displaced persons in Kachin and Shan states.[56]

In September 2017, the President of Mine Ban Treaty’s Sixteenth Meeting of States Parties, Ambassador Thomas Hajnoczi of Austria, expressed grave concern at the new use of landmines in Myanmar and said he had asked the government of Myanmar to “clarify the situation and consider an independent fact-finding mission.” In December 2017, the final report of the Mine Ban Treaty Sixteenth Meeting of States Parties states that it “condemned the use of anti-personnel mines by any actor.”[57]

Bangladesh, a State Party to the Mine Ban Treaty, has condemned the use of antipersonnel landmines by Myanmar.[58] At the UN on 21 September 2017, the Prime Minister of Bangladesh, Sheikh Hasina, stated, “We are horrified to see that the Myanmar authorities are laying landmines along their stretch of the border to prevent the Rohingya from returning to Myanmar.”[59] There is no evidence to indicate that Bangladesh has laid antipersonnel mines on its side of the border. During a 2 October 2017 high-level meeting between Bangladesh and Myanmar authorities, Bangladesh’s Home Minister, Asaduzzaman Khan Kamal, reportedly asked Myanmar’s military to stop laying landmines along the border with Bangladesh. She told media that, “I raised the issue of planting land mines along the zero line. I clearly told the honorable minister that, according to international law, Myanmar cannot plant land mines along the border. This is illegal.”[60]

The ICBL has strongly condemned the new use of landmines in Myanmar, stating, “There can be no justification for using such indiscriminate weapons, which are harming and killing civilians fleeing their homes.”

Calls to end mine use and clear landmines have become more common from within Myanmar in recent years. In April 2018, Shan state MP, Daw Nan Khin Htar Yee, said she was saddened that Myanmar has not signed the Mine Ban Treaty and pledged to encourage the government to sign.[61] At the Second Union Peace Conference in May 2017, the head of the Union-level Joint Ceasefire Monitoring Committee urged the public to call on local officials to clear landmines and unexploded ordnance.[62] In January 2017, the Lower House Member of Parliament for Manton township issued a statement condemning the use of landmines in armed conflict between the Myanmar Army and NSAGs in Shan state and called on all parties to stop using landmines.[63]

[1] The military junta ruling the country changed the name from Burma to Myanmar. Many ethnic groups in the country, and a number of states, still refer to the country as Burma. Internal state and division names are given in their common form, or with the ruling Union Solidarity Development Party (USDP) designation in parentheses, for example, Karenni (Kayah) state. Since 2009, the Monitor has used township names according to the UN Myanmar Information Management Unit (MIMU). For more information see the MINU website.

[2] ICBL Landmine Monitor meeting with Col. Min Htike Hein, Deputy Permanent Secretary for the Minister of Defense, Ministry of Defense, Naypyitaw, 29 June 2018.

[4] Statement of Myanmar, Mine Ban Treaty Sixteenth Meeting of States Parties, Vienna, 21 December 2017.

[5] Ibid.

[6] Myanmar, Explanation of Vote on Resolution L.40, 72ndSession, UNGA First Committee, New York, 31 October 2017, UNGA, Official Records, A/C.1/72/PV26, pp. 18–19/29.

[7] Ibid.

[8] Landmine Monitor meetings with Kyaw Moe Tun, Director of International Organizations, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Naypyitaw, 26 June 2017; and with Lt. Col. Myo Win Aung, Judge Advocate General’s office, Ministry of Defense, Naypyitaw, 26 June 2017. In July 2012, then Minister of Foreign Affairs, U Wunna Maung Lwin, stated that Myanmar was considering acceding to the Mine Ban Treaty. Press Release, “Myanmar seriously considering landmine treaty as part of its state reforms,” Mine Ban Treaty Implementation Support Unit (ISU), 12 July 2012.

[11] In 1996, Myanmar voted in favour of a UNGA resolution calling on governments to pursue an international agreement banning antipersonnel landmines.

[12] Myanmar previously attended Mine Ban Treaty Meetings of States Parties in 2003, 2006, and 2011–2013. It did not participate in the Mine Ban Treaty Review Conference held 2004, 2009, or 2014.

[13] The ICBL initiative was initially known as “Halt Mine Use in Burma/Myanmar.” See,Mine-Free Myanmarwebsite.

[14] “2017 Myanmar/Burma Country Report released at Yangon Press Conference,” 11 January 2018. Audio recording of the press conference.

[15] “Townships with Known Landmine Contamination (2017) and Casualties in Myanmar (as of Dec 2016),” United Nations Myanmar Information Management Unit (MIMU), 30 May 2018. Infographic provides a 11-year overview of data from the Landmine Monitor (2007–2017). In 2018, the infographic was also available in Burmese languagefor the first time. MIMU reported to the Landmine Monitor that the landmine infographic has been one of their most requested products.

[16] Myanmar produces the MM1, which is modeled on the Chinese Type-59 stake-mounted fragmentation mine; the MM2, which is similar to the Chinese Type-58 blast mine; a Claymore-type directional fragmentation mine; and a copy of the US M14 plastic mine.

[17] Htoo Thant, “Tatmadaw insists landmine use kept within reasonable minimum,” Myanmar Times, 13 September 2016.

[18] See, Landmine Monitor Report 2004, p. 938. The mines include: Chinese Types-58, -59, -69, -72A; Soviet POMZ-2, POMZ-2M, PMN-1, PMD-6; US M14, M16A1, M18; and Indian/British LTM-73, LTM-76.

[19] In 1999, Myanmar’s representative to the UN stated that the country was supportive of banning exports of antipersonnel mines, however, no formal moratorium or export ban has been proclaimed. See, Landmine Monitor Report 2000, p. 469.

[20] According to a US cable released by Wikileaks in August 2011, in December 2006 during an interview with US Embassy officials a Karen politician indicated that “in 2005 a foreign expert trained the KNLA on how to manufacture ‘Bouncing Betty’ anti-personnel mines, packed with ball bearings. The KNLA claims all of its brigades now know how to produce this ‘new’ landmine. KNLA officers claim they use them only in forward areas to slow the Burmese Army’s advance into traditional KNU territory. The source said the new mines are much more lethal than earlier KNLA mines that tended to maim rather than kill.” “06RANGOON1767, BURMA REGIME AND KAREN MISTRUST CONTINUES,” US Department of State cable dated 4 December 2006, released by Wikileaks on 30 August 2011.

[21] Landmine Monitor Report 2009 identified the presence of US-made M26 bounding antipersonnel mines in Myanmar but could not identify the source or the user. In 2010, a confidential source indicated that the KNLA had received many M26 mines from the Royal Thai Army in the past, before Thailand joined the Mine Ban Treaty. See, Landmine Monitor Report 2009, p. 1013.

[22] The Free Burma Rangers published the photographs. See, Free Burma Rangers, “Burma Army Laying Landmines in Civilian Areas,” 23 June 2018.

[23] Landmine Monitor meeting with Col. (rtd) Min Htike Hein, Deputy Permanent Secretary for the Minister of Defense, Ministry of Defense, Naypyitaw, 29 June 2018.

[24] Of the six photographs, one photograph showed a single VS 1.6 Italian-made antivehicle mine. The rest show Ka Pa Sa-manufactured antipersonnel mines.

[25] According to Landmine Monitor, local researchers interviewing and assisting displaced Rohingya civilians as they crossed into Bangladesh on 28 August saw an army truck arrive on the Myanmar side of the border from which they witnessed Myanmar government soldiers unloading three crates. They said the soldiers removed antipersonnel landmines from the crates and placed them in the ground, later returning at night to place more mines. According to these researchers, the mines were emplaced within Taung Pyo Let Yar village tract of Maungdaw township, adjacent to border pillar No. 31 in Bangladesh, an area that demarcates the beginning of the land border between Bangladesh and Myanmar. Email and phone interviews with researchers working with an NGO who wished to remain anonymous, 17 September 2017.

[26] According to the report, “The Team was informed that until 23 August 2017, the Myanmar and Bangladesh border guards conducted joint patrols along the international border between Bangladesh and Myanmar and that it was therefore highly unlikely that mines were planted before 23 August due to the likelihood of real danger for army personnel of both sides that they would step onto such an explosive device.” OHCHR, “Mission report of OHCHR rapid response mission to Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh, 13–24 September 2017,” 11 October 2017. pp. 9–10.

[27] Human Rights Council, “Report of the detailed findings of the Independent International Fact-Finding Mission on Myanmar,” A/HRC/39/CRP.2, 17 September 2018, p. 288.

[28] Anwar Hussain, “Myanmar army’s landmines put elephants at risk,” Dhaka Tribune, 26 November 2017.

[29] “Rohingya farmers victims of fatal injury in land mine explosion in Northern Maungdaw,” Arakan TV, 15 July 2017. Photographic evidence included with reports, however independent verification was not possible. See also, Thar Shwe Oo, “Landmine kills three in Maungdaw,” Eleven Myanmar, 16 July 2017; and Moe Myint, “Landmine Explosion Kills Teenager, Two Men in Rakhine,” The Irrawaddy, 16 July 2017.

[30] Amnesty International, “All the Civilians Suffer: Conflict, Displacement and abuse in Northern Myanmar,” 14 June 2017, p. 32.

[31] Unpublished information provided to the Landmine Monitor by the Karen Human Rights Group, 6 September 2017.

[32] “Border Landmine Kills and Injures Rohingyas,” Kaladan Press, 19 April 2016.

[33] A massive outflow of Rohingya people, nearly a quarter of a million, from Northern Rakhine State (NRS) occurred in 1991 and 1992. Following widespread condemnation of Burma at that time by the Muslim world, Myanmar’s armed forces emplaced a significant minefield along the entire length of its border with Bangladesh. Bangladesh officials and humanitarian workers stated at the time that Burma’s boundary minefield was laid for the purpose of deterring further flight out of the country by the Rohingya, and also to harass cross border movement by several Rohingya and Rakhine armed groups active at that time. See, Landmine Monitor 2000, “Burma Country Report.” In the early 1990s, several armed groups existed in that border area, including the Rohingya Solidarity Organization, the Arakan Rohingya National Organization, the Arakan Army, and the Arakan Liberation Army. Further mine laying occurred in later years. See, Landmine Monitor, “Country Profile: Myanmar/Burma: Ban Policy profiles,” for 2013,2014,and 2015.

[34] Guwahati Nyoooz, “Bomb experts defuse mines along Myanmar border in Mizoram,” Times of India, 16 February 2018. See also, “Land Mines in Mizoram-Myanmar border cause rising casualties,” The Northeast Today, 25 January 2018; and Lun Min Mang, “Villager killed by landmine in Paletwa, refugees flee to India,” Myanmar Times, 30 November 2017.

[35] Over the past two decades, Landmine Monitor has reported disturbing evidence that Myanmar military have forced civilians to clear antipersonnel mines without training or protective equipment or forced civilians to guide or carry equipment for the military in mined areas. Such activities constitute a threat to the right to life, liberty, and security of person. During Myanmar’s first Universal Periodic Review of its human rights record, in 2011, the ICBL provided a submissiondetailing the use of human minesweepers.

[36] Human Rights Council, “Report of the detailed findings of the Independent International Fact-Finding Mission on Myanmar,” A/HRC/39/CRP.2, 17 September 2018.

[37] Kachin Women’s Association Thailand, “Burma Army commits war crimes against Kachin IDPs: blocking access to refuge, using as human shields and minesweepers, indiscriminate shelling, looting,” 14 May 2018; and subsequent clarification emails from San Htoi, Kachin Women’s Association Thailand, 2 July 2018.

[39] Karen Human Rights Group, “Interview #17-131-A4-I1,” published 8 June 2018. There is no official governmental document that defines a Border Guard Force (BGF), however they have a military structure parallel to the Myanmar Army. The BGF commander is from an ethnic armed group, as are many of the rank and file. BGF are supposedly under the command of the Myanmar army, however they sometimes appear to carry out independent activities.

[41] Lawi Weng, “3 Civilians Reportedly Killed by Landmines in Shan State in June,” The Irrawaddy, 8 July 2018.

[42] “KHRG Submission to Landmine Monitor,” September 2018, unpublished.

[43] Lawi Weng, “KIA Raids Tatmadaw Base, Claims to Detain More than a Dozen Troops,” The Irrawaddy, 9 April 2018.

[44] Lawi Weng, “Army Shelling Seen Signaling Start of New Offensive in Kachin, Shan States,” The Irrawaddy, 14 December 2017.

[45] “KHRG Submission to Landmine Monitor,” September 2018, unpublished.

[46] Tun Lin Aung, “Landmines scare Myitkyina farmers,” Eleven Myanmar, 2 June 2017.

[47] “Peace Deal Signed,” Global New Light of Myanmar, 16 October 2015, p. 1. Each of the political organizations that signed the ceasefire agreement has an armed wing. The armed wing of the KNU factions is the KNLA, the RCSS is the political organization of the Shan State Army South, the ALP has its Arakan Liberation Army, the PNLO has its Pao National Liberation Army, and the CNF has the Chin National Army. The other two groups have the same name for their armed organizations.

[48] “Two ethnic armed groups sign ceasefire agreement in Nay Pyi Taw,” Global New Light of Myanmar, 14 February 2018.

[49] In the past, a few armed groups and former-armed groups, unilaterally renounced the use of antipersonnel mines by signing the Deed of Commitment administered by the Swiss NGO, Geneva Call. The Chin National Front/Chin National Army renounced use in July 2006. The Arakan Rohingya National Organization and the National United Party of Arakan, both now militarily defunct, renounced use in October 2003. The Lahu Democratic Front (LDF), Palaung State Liberation Army, and PPLO/Pa’O Peoples Liberation Army (PPLA) renounced use in April 2007. In a June 2010 report, Geneva Call noted that LDF and the PPLA had disbanded.

[50] Since 2014, Geneva Call has been pursuing inquiries about allegations of mine use made against the TNLA. See, Geneva Call, “Burma/Myanmar: Geneva Call urges an end to mine use in northern Shan State,” 14 July 2016.

[51] Amnesty International, “All the Civilians Suffer: Conflict, Displacement and abuse in Northern Myanmar,” 14 June 2017, p. 44.

[52] Statement of Myanmar, Mine Ban Treaty Sixteenth Meeting of States Parties, Vienna, 21 December 2017.

[53] Landmine Monitor meeting with Col. (rtd) Min Htike Hein, Ministry of Defense, Naypyitaw, 29 June 2018.

[54] Lawi Weng, “3 Civilians Reportedly Killed by Landmines in Shan State in June,’” The Irrawaddy, 8 July 2018.

[55] Nang Lwin Hnin Pwint, “Mined areas increase to 11 Townships-original in Burmese language,” The Irrawaddy, 13 January 2018.

[57] “Final report: Mine Ban Treaty Sixteenth Meeting of States Parties,” APLC/MSP.16/2017/11, 22 December 2017.

[61] Pyae Thet Phyo, “Government to go slow on EU landmine aid offer,” Myanmar Times, 6 April 2018.

[62] Saw Nyunt Thaung, “Panglong fails to address need for landmine clearance agreements,” Karen News, 30 May 2017.

[63] Nyein Zaw Lin, “MP denounces collateral damage and landmine danger,” Myanmar Times, 25 January 2017.