Mon Political Dialogue urges the military and the ethnic armed groups to cooperate in eliminating drugs

May 15, 2018

Representatives from the Mon State National-level Political Dialogue which was held in Ye Township from May 5 to 7, 2018 have urged the military and the ethnic armed organizations (EAOs) to cooperate to eliminate drugs.

While the Mon Political Dialogue have not yet reached an accord regarding building a “Federal Union”, one of the major issues on which they came to an agreement was “Social Affairs”. During the “Social Affairs” discussion, the representatives agreed to call on the military and the EAOs to work together to eliminate drugs.

Representatives from the “Social Affairs” discussion group noted that the drugs trade and the use of drugs amongst the youth community in Mon State have dramatically increased recently. Therefore, they agreed, the government military and the EAOs urgently need to cooperate to counter these trends.

“We can’t wait till we have ‘Federal Union’. Too many Mon youths have become addicted to drugs. We can’t control them. The New Mon State Party and the Burma Army should discuss how to cooperate in eliminating drugs. All representatives from the ‘Social Affairs’ group have already agreed on this point. The government and the armed groups (the military and the EAOs) should take full responsibility for eliminating drugs,” said Nai Pa Lon Gata from Ah Nin Village, Thanbyuzayat Township.

On April 2-3, 2018, the Mon Youth Progressive Organization (MYPO) and the Thanbyuzayat Youth Organization held a conference related to the drugs issue in Thanbyuzayat Town. The conference released a statement urging the Monk community, the Media, the author community, parents, the General Administration Department (GAD), and the rehabilitation departments for drugs users to increase the momentum of the anti-drugs campaign.

According to research carried out by the MYPO in 2017-18, about 73% of Mon young people had previously used drugs.

In 2013, according to a study by the Human Rights Foundation of Monland (HURFOM), 40% of youths in Ye, 55% of youths in Mudon, 50% of youths in Thanbyuzayat, 30% of youths in Mawlamyine, 35% of youths in Kyaikmayaw, 10% in Paung, 30% in Chaungzone, 40% of youths in Hpa-an, 40% of youths in Kyar Inn Seik Kyi and 45% of youths in Kawkareik had used drugs.

In 2017, the MYPO conducted a study of drugs usage in the Mon youth community. The results showed that 80% of youths in Ye, 78% of youths in Mudon, 77% of youths in Thanbyuzayat, 75% of youths in Mawlamyine, 72% of youths in Kyaikmayaw, 75% of youths in Paung, 65% of youths in Chaungzone, 70% of youths in Hpa-an, 70% of youths in Kyar Inn Seik Kyi and 70% of youths in Kawkareik had used drugs.

 

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