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Karen State, Burma: Dooplaya District Image Analysis
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Dooplaya District is in southern Karen State and has experienced conflict for many years, with the military government and its allies taking firm control of the region after a major offensive in 1997. Reporting from the Free Burma Rangers and the Karen Human Rights Group indicates that attacks continue to this day, corroborated by reporting from the Thailand Burma Border Consortium. Village attacks, forced displacement, destruction of agriculture, and forced labor have been the main tactics in use in the area.
Dooplaya District Sites
Archival images from January 2000 were compared with archival images from November 2006. Much of the area analyzed was devoid of any large settlements visible in the area, though much agriculture was present throughout. The following image pairs (Images 20 - 22) present areas of possible settlement destruction and associated agricultural abandonment.
While a variety of factors may account for removal of the structures and crops in the intervening time period, reporting does indicate both the destruction of villages and agricultural sites, and creation of new agricultural areas, with forced labor, as part of attacks across the region.
Image 20: Agricultural Abandomment and Structure Removal
The "before" image of 22 January 2007 (above left) depicts a cluster of structures and a nearby possible palm oil plot that are not present in the "after" image of 18 November 2006 (above right). Images GeoEye. (Lat: 15.70 N Long: 98.35 E)
Image 21: Structure Removal
A cluster of approximately 4 structures in the "before" image (22 January 2000) are no longer present in the "after" image (18 November 2006). This corresponds with attacks reported to have occurred in the area between mid-2005 and mid-2006. Images GeoEye. (Lat: 15.73 N Long: 98.32 E)
Image 22: Agricultural Abandoment and Structure Removal
An additional site of possible structure removal and agricultural abandoment. Left image 22 January 2000, GeoEye. Right image, 18 November 2006, Geoeye. (Lat: 15.71 N Long: 98.32 E)