Al Jazeera: Myanmar Arrests Point to 'Dangerous Future'
November 12, 2014
By Phoesan Chaung and Dene-Hern Chen
KANBALU TOWNSHIP, Myanmar – Since the conviction of her husband two months ago, Gam stays close to her modest wooden house in Myay Mun village, paralysed by fear and worried about her future.
Looking out at the lush green fields of northwestern Myanmar, she pointed to the tin-roofed houses set up by the Myanmar army to guard farmland that she and her husband used to call their own.
"Now, all my land has been taken by the army and my husband has gone to jail," Gam said, in tears.
Her husband is one of 56 farmers who were arrested in July and August under the charges of trespassing and criminal misconduct, with prison terms ranging from three months to three years. Their crime was participating in a "plough protest", a form of demonstration whereby farmers plough disputed land to symbolise their ownership of it.