burma news international
25 /08/2010 - Two child soldiers [14 and 15 years] of the Democratic Karen Buddhist Army (DKBA), who did not want to join the Border Guard Force (BGF), deserted to KNU’s brigade 7 on 22 August.
"We don’t want to be Burmese Army soldiers. Our battalion commander told us that we would be in the Burmese Army in the future. When he was going back to the rear camp, we escaped. We want to fight the Burmese Army."
Saw Khu Muu has been in DKBA four years but Saw Der Eh was in service for a year. They live in Htee Yar Thay Htar and Kamar Htar village.
"I live in Htee Yar Thay Htar village. When I was 10 and studying in the fifth standard (middle school), DKBA soldiers came to our school and forcibly recruited us. Three of us, me and another third standard student, were taken away. Our parents and school teachers didn't say anything because they were afraid. I attended basic military training for four months but I didn't go to the battle front," Saw Khu Muu said.
Likewise, Saw Der Eh told KIC, "I have never studied in a school. I worked in a paddy field. DKBA soldiers took me from my paddy field after they said that they needed soldiers to attack Mi Aye Pu camp. My dad and mom were afraid to say anything. I have been in DKBA for a year."
The child soldiers brought two AR assault rifles, 176 rounds of ammunition and seven magazines with them.
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