Ethnic Chin refugee from Burma, Datt Cung, from Chin State, pictured in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
I live in Hakha and two people from my home village came up to Hakha and asked me to help them go shopping, so I helped them the all day and then they went back. The next day I was arrested by soldiers and I was interrogated by saying that the guys that you were with yesterday were soldiers in the CNF [Chin National Front], I answered that I didn't know if they were soldiers or not and they arrested me and brought me to Rung Tlang. After that I was interrogated and tortured for two months and after that I was sent to Hakha prison.
Although I kept telling them that I didn't know them they beat me and beat me. I don't remember how long they let the water drop on my head but the first time it dropped it didn't hurt but later on it sounds like doong doong; I felt the pain from my head to my feet.
At the court I was sentenced for nine years in a forced labour camp. I spent 8 years and five months in Kalay prison and then Osma. The Secretary-General of the UN, Ban Ki-Moon, asked the government to release the prisoners; 140 prisoners were released and I was included among them. I was released on May 17th, 2011. Even after I was released I always had to report and sign about my existence to the police or to the soldiers. I was always afraid that I could be arrested again, that is the reason why I fled.
In Myanmar, in our Chin land, in our Chin state, we're like slaves under the military government because they do whatever they want, they make you do whatever they want and they can confiscate things whenever they want. They ask us to carry things, to do manual labour. If we want to worship we have to ask permission. If we want to go to a temple or to church we have to ask permission. So in many respects we are not free. We are all Christians, the soldiers are Buddhists, they don't like us, they don't like christians, especially they don't like Chin people. They have a kind of