Equality Myanmar (EQMM), formerly known as the Human Rights Education Institute of Burma (HREIB), is a nongovernmental organization that facilitates a broad range of human rights training and advocacy programs for grassroots organizations, political parties, and communities.
EQMM has also produced numerous advocacy videos on various issues, and in this blogpost I’ve highlighted my top three from their amazing collection.
Myanmar’s Human Rights Day
March 13 is a date widely recognized as Myanmar’s Human Rights Day, and this short video explains why.
On that fateful day in 1988, Ko Phone Maw, a fifth-year student at the Rangoon Institute of Technology was killed by government riot police. This could be considered the key event which sparked off the historic pro-democracy uprising that year.
During that uprising, many political leaders remembered Ko Phone Maw’s death, and planned to commemorate Myanmar’s Human Rights Day every year, a tradition that is carried out till today.
Suu Kyi’s Speech on the Day Against Child Trafficking
On 12th December 2011, the Day Against Child Trafficking was marked at the CDC school in Mae Sot, Northern Thailand. Parents, teachers, and students from 72 migrant schools, totaling to over two thousand people, attended the ceremony.
The event was opened by a speech by Daw Aung San Suu Kyi on child rights and trafficking. She starts by stating that, “Every day should be a day against child trafficking”. She goes on to say, “The trafficking of children, and therefore the trafficking our future, should be stopped. It is very inhumane and is an uneducated idea. This is gambling with our future.”
It is for these reasons that Suu Kyi believes child trafficking should be ended, and why she would like to show appreciation for those who are actively working against the practice.
Surviving on Unwelcoming Hills
This video portrays the ethnic Chin people in Myanmar’s far-flung western Chin state, who have long borne the brunt of abusive military rule.
Ongoing repression and abuses by Myanmar’s military, combined with policies and procedures of the military government have caused thousands of ethnic Chin to flee the country. Most go across the border to India. Most go across the border to Mirozam, India.
Also examined in the film is the situation across the border in Mizoram State, where the Chin face discrimination, religious repression, and other forums of abuse. The Indian government neglects the Chin living in Mizoram, and thousands of them have been rounded up and forcibly returned by voluntary associations and local authorities.
You can check out more videos from Equality Myanmar’s video page. And if you’re interested to learn more about contemporary Myanmar and its filmmakers and journalists, look out for updates on our Southeast Asia Video Camp happening in Yangon in June 2015.