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Junta Bans Traditional Festival Donations in Three Pagodas Pass

Kaowao News, Oct 8, 2007

Rangoon, Burma -- The Burmese military authorities in Three Pagodas Pass on the Thailand-Burma border have banned traditional festival donations to monks on this full moon day, according to a source from the border town.

In earlier years over 700 monks from three different monasteries and many monks from the local township came to this festival.

However, the military has ordered them to stop the practice during the festival this year.

 "On the evening of the October 6, the Burmese checkpoints that open illegally were closed to all business except exporting materials. On October 7 they were closed completely," a businessman said.

Nowadays people find it difficult to cross checkpoints in the area and it is hard for visitors to stay in the Three Pagodas Pass.

"The authorities already hold a list of all family members in the Three Pagodas area. If you are on the list you can receive visitors but if the visitor goes outside at night he will be investigated," a Three Pagodas Pass villager said.

"On October 6, the Burmese soldiers were interrogating protesters who fled from inside Burma", said a villager connected to the township authorities.

Currently in an effort to seek out the protesters who ran from inside Burma, Thai checkpoints are checking all travelers more than before.

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