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Chin women of Mrauk-U

The government banned the practice of facial tattoo-ing in the '60s so there are only a few left, living in remote villages several hours upstream from Mrauk-U on Burma's West coast. The purpose of the tattoos was, in their words, to make them ugly in order to avoid the attentions of the approaching Japanese army during WWII.

The villagers were very welcoming and we had a great morning trying local food and playing with the kids. As often happens in Burma, the women became serious in front of the camera, giving them a solemnity which disguised their natural friendliness.