Hpakant villagers end jade mining protest


Workers at a jade mining area in Hpakant, Kachin State. Photo: Mizzima

Residents of three villages in the Hpakant jade mining region in Kachin state have temporarily agreed to end a three-day protest that began Saturday against mining companies whose trucks transport and dump mountains of waste from worksites in the area, RFA reported on 16 February quoting a local village chief.

Locals are worried that a series of deadly landslides from improperly dumped waste soil will continue in the area, especially during the heavy rains of the June-October monsoon season, and endanger the lives of those who live near the sites, said Shwe Thein, chief of Seik Mu village tract and chairman of the local National League for Democracy (NLD) chapter.

Residents agreed to temporarily stop blocking roads used by the trucks, while the companies said they would stop transporting mining waste until the Ministry of Mines issued a decision on the matter, he said.

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