Girl abducted from Kyone Ka Yote primary school

October 4, 2013

HURFOM: Residents of Kyone Ka Yot, a village located a few miles from Thanbyuzayat City in central Mon State, alleged that the recent kidnapping of an 11-year-old girl revealed the extent of police corruption and human trafficking trends in the area. According to locals, seven cases of human trafficking have already been confirmed in Thanbyuzayat and Mudon townships this year, all targeting children between the ages of 7 and 15, and family members of the disappeared young girl fear the worst.

Mi Ong Mon Son, a primary school student in Kyone Ka Yote, was reportedly kidnapped around 1pm on September 28 after two men came to her school and requested to speak with her. According to teachers, the visitors appeared to be over the age of 30 and school staff, believing the men to be the girl’s relatives, allowed them to talk with the girl. Shortly after they spoke, Mi Ong Mon Son asked her teachers for permission to go home. The teachers agreed, but asked two fellow students to accompany the men to the girl’s house.

The men allegedly took Mi Ong Mon Son on their motorbike while the other two students drove behind. The students reported that instead of stopping when the men arrived at the girl’s house, they sped away, and the students did not think to call out to neighbors but returned to school where they described the incident to teachers.

Upon hearing the story, Mi Ong Mon Son’s teachers said they immediately informed her relatives. Abbot Su Wanna, one of the girl’s family members, phoned the police in Thanbyuzayat City to report the abduction and ask them to initiate pursuit of the captors. He alleged that the police did not comply with his request.

“Just over 30 minutes later – as soon as we heard – we informed the police but we did not offer to pay them, and that’s why they didn’t handle anything for us. If we paid them, they would have tracked the strangers. They have many human resources so if they had worked [to find her], they could have done it. I think the police did not want to work without a bribe and that’s why we lost the girl.”

According to the family, the Kyone Ka Yote village administrator also informed the police about the kidnapping but received no satisfactory response. Abbot Su Wanna said he attempted to contact all of Mi Ong Mon Son’s relatives to help with the search and posted her photo on Facebook in the hopes that someone had seen her.

The abbot and other family members fear the young girl may have been a victim of a reputed human trafficker living in Palain Japan (Japan Yay Twin village) near the Thai-Burma border. The family explained that the woman was responsible for brokering the deal to sell Mi Ong Mon Son when she was three years old to her adoptive parents, who later moved to Thailand and left the girl with an aunt. Abbot Su Wanna tried to contact the woman the same day as the kidnapping but said she had changed her phone number and disappeared from town.


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