KWO Message for the International Day for Elimination of Violence Against Women (English Version)

 Karen Women’s Organization (KWO)

Message for International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women 

On this day, 25th November 2013, the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, KWO is launching a 16-Day Campaign calling for the elimination of violence against women. The awareness raising campaign will take place in the 7 Karen refugee camps and 5 districts inside Karen State. Participants will gain knowledge on how to prevent and stop violence against women, compete in speeches and debates, and participate in community activities aimed at advocating for the protection of women.

“If you see someone committing violence against women, you must stop them. Not stopping violence makes everyone guilty. Victims of violence can seek help from KWO. If victims live in a refugee camp, they can access one of KWO’s safe houses where they will have a safe place to stay and be provided with some material needs and counseling. Victims inside Karen state can get assistance from the KWO leader in their district or township.”

–        Naw K’nyaw Paw, KWO Secretary

To read the entire message, click the link below:

KWO Message for International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women 25 Nov 2013

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Karen Women’s Organisation condemns Burmese Army Attacks on Kachin Villagers

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This past Tuesday, 22 October, the Burmese Army brutally attacked 2 villages in Southern Kachin State.  This is in direct violation of the agreement signed by the Government and the Kachin National Organisation just 12 days previously.  The attack was launched by 7 Burmese army battalions.  These attacks affected several camps where approximately 2400 Internally Displaced People (IDP’S) have been living and are now threatened yet again.

“Local witnesses stated that 60mm heavy artillery shells landed near the school in the IDP camp. Burmese soldiers looted IDPs’ belongings and arrested eight villagers from Kong Ja Village and two from Mung Ding Pa village, including a child aged about 12. These inhumane actions forced many of the refugees to flee for their lives. Some elderly and infirm people and children and have taken refuge in the Mung Ding Pa village church.” (Kachin National Organisation, press release 23 October 2013)

The Karen Women’s Organisation strongly condemns this attack on innocent people and the looting of supplies and belongings of those who have the least in our community. There have been reports of rape and other human rights violations.  Women have always suffered as victims of war and this terrible attack is yet another instance of the abuse the women of Burma have suffered at the hands of the military.

The International community should intervene to stop this and other human rights violations by the Burmese army and its government. We question the Burmese commitment to true peace when these actions are allowed to occur. We, like all ethnic peoples of Burma, stand with the Kachin people against these violations of all our rights.

War and Peace – A woman’s view , Interview with KWO Secretary

Naw K’nyaw Paw, an executive member of the Karen Women’s Organization, in an exclusive interview with Karen News spoke about the need for women to be included in peace talks as stipulated under the United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325, the impact of drugs and gambling on family life and the added stresses women now face in Burma’s changing political landscape…

Read more: karennews.org/2013/09/war-and-peace-a-womans-view-part-1.html/ and Part 2 karennews.org/2013/09/war-and-peace-a-womans-view-part-2.html/

Time to End Sexual Violence In Burma

Photo: Reuters
Photo: Reuters

For too many people in Burma, the sound of gunfire and mortar bombs is a familiar one. For decades the Burmese army has relentlessly attacked civilians in Burma’s ethnic states. The United Nations has documented multiple possible war crimes and crimes against humanity committed by the Burmese army, which has deliberately targeted civilians. Unknown millions have fled such attacks in the six decades since Burma gained independence.

I know very well the fear when, without warning, the Burmese army attacks a village. The sudden crackle of gunfire and the boom of mortar bombs as they shake the ground. Twice I fled such attacks when the Burmese army attacked my village. Continue reading

KWO 2011 – 2012 Two Year Update

KWO is pleased to provide our 2011/12-update report including programs currently running in the community, challenges and successes, financial reports, KWO special activities and a Call to Action. One thing that remains true throughout KWO’s 28 years of service is our commitment to the Empowerment, Equality, and Freedom of all Karen women. Thank you to KWO staff, leaders, members, volunteers, community members, partner organizations and funders who help make KWO successful!

KWO 2011-2012 Two Year Update

Karen People’s Forum Statement and Press Release Regarding the Peace Proces and Mega Development Projects

 

Use this link if you’d like to download or read it.

Karen People’s Forum Statement _Burmese_

Karen People’s Forum Statement (English)

Karen People’s Forum Statement (Karen)

Press Release (English)

Press Release (Karen)

Press Release _Burmese_

 

KWO Magazine in Skaw Karen

KWO puts out a quarterly magazine in Skaw Karen which are distributed through out the 7 Karen refugee camps.  Each magazine is passed between refugees being read by multiple people.  It is just one way we seek to keep our community up to date and informed.

Use this link if you’d like to download or read our magazine:

KWO Magazine vol 2 Issue 9

KWO Magazine in Skaw Karen

KWO puts out a quarterly magazine in Skaw Karen which are distributed through out the 7 Karen refugee camps.  Each magazine is passed between refugees being read by multiple people.  It is just one way we seek to keep our community up to date and informed.

Use this link if you’d like to download or read our magazine:

KWO Magazine volume 2 Issue 8

Women’s League of Burma Calls for Greater Women’s Participation in Peace Process

WLB Calling for Greater Women’s Participation in Peace Process (English Version)

WLB Calling for Greater Women’s Participation in Peace Process (Burmese Version)

International Women’s Day 2012 – From Fear To Freedom

Karen Language Version KWO Statement for Int’l Women Day 2012

Date: 8th March 2012
“Women moving forward from Fear to Freedom”

The Karen Women Organization (KWO) welcomes another International Women’s Day. One of the themes for this year is “FROM FEAR TO FREEDOM”. On March 8th each year, women around the world reflect on our progress toward equality and freedom. We celebrate our victories and look at how far women still have to go. KWO has worked for many years to protect, support, defend and empower women who have been abused, by anyone from members of the Burmese military or their own husbands. These women have been taught to be afraid, to live each day with fear.

Worldwide, at least one third of all women are victims of violence. It is the most widespread human rights violation on earth. We see this every day, particularly in the 7 refugee camps along the Thai-Burma border where KWO runs safe houses for women who have been subjected to violence and need a safe harbor. 77% of the cases we handle are women who have been subjected to domestic violence, the other 23% are rapes or attempted rapes. Women will not be able to move from fear to freedom without a working system to achieve justice in the camps and for any cases referred outside of camps to the justice system in Thailand.

We believe the current system is failing women in our community. Community systems and structures need to be supported and strengthened in order to directly and effectively reduce the violence experienced by women in our community. Camp justice systems must be made more comprehensive and supported rather than undermined.

KWO Joint Secretary 2, Ta Mla Saw said today, “Daw Aung San Suu Kyi wrote a book called “Freedom from Fear” so we know that she too, as a woman, understands how important this idea is. Our aim in KWO is to help women who have suffered from violence, to transform their fear, and for it to grow into something stronger. freedom! Every woman understands this.”

Currently, the Burmese government says they want to work for peace in Burma and has started the peace process talks with different ethnic opposition groups. KWO has called for women’s participation in the peace process to ensure that this process reflects the voices of women who live this conflict. KWO reaffirms that only women’s participation in the peace process can stop fear and create freedom without fear for all women

As KWO has been involved in solving the problem of violence against women in the community, we believe that any solution must include an empowered, engaged, and educated community, especially women and women’s groups. “KWO believes that all refugees and particularly women should continue to say to everyone, “Nothing about us without us.” We need to be involved and engaged in order to gain our rights, equality and our freedom.” Stated Dah Eh Kler, Secretary

Right now the current system is teaching women that there is no safe place and no future. There is a lot of fear and not enough freedom. This International Women’s Day all of us should recommit ourselves to strengthening the justice systems available to abused women in refugee camps. We have to work together to win access to real justice and so women can find themselves successfully walking from fear to freedom.

Contact:
Nan Dah Eh Kler – +66 857269291
Naw Blooming Night Zan- +66 885455746