The Asian Forum for Human Rights and Development (FORUM-ASIA) and its member organizations, Equality Myanmar, Progressive Voice and Women’s League of Burma, have jointly called for the full restoration of Internet services in townships in Rakhine and Chin states to enable communities to access critical information in the time of the Covid-19 pandemic.
With the rapidly increasing cases of Covid-19 in the region, the lack of access to information caused by Internet shutdown will only worsen existing abuses and violations suffered by communities in these townships.
On Monday, the government of Myanmar declared that it had two positive cases of Covid-19, after weeks of denial. The declaration came as neighboring country Thailand saw thousands of migrant workers returning home to Myanmar as many businesses ceased operations. There are genuine fears that many more are at risk in a country with a weak health infrastructure and a lack of social security safeguards.