Total Denial Continues
“For better or for worse, we have blood on our hands.”
— Sukumbhand Paribatra, Deputy Foreign Minister of Thailand
Since the early 1990’s, a terrible drama has been unfolding in Burma. Three western oil companies — Total, Premier, and Unocal — entered into partnerships with the brutal Burmese miltary regime to build the Yadana and Yetagun natural gas pipelines. The regime created a highly militarized pipeline corridor in what had previously been a relatively peaceful area, resulting in violent suppression of dissent, environmental destruction, forced labor and portering, forced relocations, torture, rape, and summary executions.
EarthRights International co-founder Ka Hsaw Wa and a team of field staff traveled on both sides of the Thai-Burmese border in the Tenasserim region to document the conditions in the pipeline corridor. In the nearly four years since the release of “Total Denial” (1996), the violence and forced labor in the pipeline region have continued unabated. This report builds on the evidence in “Total Denial” and brings to light several new facets of the tragedy in the Tenasserim region.