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26 Jan 2019

John Grafilo, Myanmar Times

Myanmar: Displaced villagers urge Govt. to stop Chinese-funded Myitsone hydropower project

"Displaced villagers urge permanent halt to Myitsone hydropower project", 25 January 2019

Villagers displaced by the start of construction on the Chinese-funded Myitsone dam in Kachin State...urged the government to cancel the project, which was halted in 2011 after widespread protests.

"To permanently stop the Myitsone dam project and to be able to return to our original homes is the intention of the residents," the group of residents, calling themselves Mungchying Rawt Jat, said in a statement.

"The government is responsible for cancelling the project, which is worthless to locals, and to compensate the displaced people."

...[S]everal non-governmental groups criticised a statement by the Chinese embassy in Myanmar that said ethnic Kachin people were not opposed to the resumption of the project.

U Tu Ja, chair of the Kachin State Democracy Party, said that they would only accept development projects offered by China that benefit the people.

...U Sar Chi, a leader of a Kachin civil society group, said China may be putting pressure on the Kachin people because it wants the project to resume....