Eastward Bound: An update on migrantion and trafficking of Kachin Women on the China- Burma border

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Summary  of  key  findings

  • The report documents 133 verified and suspected trafficking cases, involving 163 women and girls, which occurred between 2004 and mid-2007.
  • As political and economic conditions inside Burma continue to deteriorate, more and more Kachin women are migrating to China in search of work, and are ending up as forced brides of Chinese men.
  • Most of the forced brides were transported across China to marry men in the eastern provinces, particularly Shandong Province. Women described being shown to many men, sometimes in marketplaces, before being chosen. The husbands, predominantly farmers, paid an average of US$1,900 for their brides.
  • About a quarter of those trafficked were under 18, with girls as young as 14 forced to be brides. Several cases involved traffickers attempting to buy babies.
  • The continuing high incidence of trafficking indicates that the regime’s new anti-trafficking law, passed in September 2005, is failing to have any impact in curbing the problem. Provisions in the regime’s new law to protect the rights of trafficking  victims are not being adhered to. Women are also being falsely accused of trafficking under the new law.
  • Women report that Chinese police have been helpful in assisting them to return to Burma, but have sometimes demanded compensation from Burma aborder officials for repatriating trafficking victims.

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