The South China Morning Post releases a report stating that China’s recent crackdown on gambling and fraud is causing distress near the Myanmar border. The pandemic-stricken nation faces troubles near Kokang, Mong La, Muse, Wa State, and Kokang borders.
As per Beijing authorities, these borders were trading in telecom fraud, internet scamming, and illegal online casinos. China’s local security executives asked the people involved in the businesses to return to northern Myanmar or face the consequences back in May. However, authorities changed the message to every Chinese national within the region, accounting for an approx. 140,000 people.
As per the security personnel, anyone refusing to do so will lose access to public services, subsidies, and welfare.
The matter worsened as the pandemic surged in the nation. Amid the chaos, authorities asked Chinese citizens to stay in quarantine for a minimum of five days on the Myanmar side of the border for 250 US dollars. After that, the citizens will need to stay isolated for three weeks on the Chinese side.
The citizens must pass seven tests before entering the nation. The isolation center in Myanmar can only shelter several hundred people, but there are thousands of people trying to get back home.
SCMP talked to many of them, and most of them said they belonged to China’s poorest regions. They added that they did not participate in any illegal activity, but authorities are harassing them, assuming they are fraudsters. Many even sold their assets and property to stay quarantined for five days near the border.
Under such conditions, it is viable to consider whether such handling is even legal, seeing how it risks thousands of presumably guilty citizens.
While the treatment has been a bit extreme, it is rendering results. Wa State, ruled by the UWSA, is the strongest and biggest group of Burmese separatist groups. Moreover, the region was the biggest illegal drug dealer in the SEA, monitoring the flow of narcotics like heroin across the infamous Golden Triangle.
The USWA used the revenue generated from these trades to acquire power and weapons. They even signed a peace treaty with the 1989 military junta in Burma, bringing autonomy to the Wa State.
As the Wa State heavily relies on Chinese suppliers for electricity and mobile networks, the state readily banned online gambling. As per officials, Wa State has steered its focus from drug trafficking to tea and rubber distribution in the past 20 years with the Chinese government’s assistance.
Back in June, Bao Youxiang (Wa State’s Supreme Leader) wrote a letter stating how China’s recall of its people is significantly disrupting routine business. In addition, the leader wrote that every technology and supply the state requires comes from China. Thus, to develop and survive, the state cannot oppose China’s policies. That’s why the state completely banned online gambling across Wa State.