1.Two villagers shot dead by IB 23 troops near Upper Yeywa dam site in Kyaukme township
On March 18, 2018, Burma Army troops from IB 23 shot dead two civilians riding a motorcycle near Wan Shwe Kyaung village, about five miles from the Upper Yeywa damsite in Kyaukme township, northern Shan State.
The two men, Sai Ba, age 43, and Saw Dawna, age 29, were from Wan Shwe Kyawng, and were riding a motorcycle towards Nawng Bing village. Sai Ba was driving the motorcycle, and Sai Dawna was sitting behind him. Two other friends were riding another motorcycle behind them.
At 5.30 am, when they were about half a mile from Wan Shwe Kyawng, they were shot at by five Burma Army troops sitting in a car parked at the side of the road.
Sai Ba and Sai Dawna were hit and died immediately, falling off their motorcycle. The other two men riding behind them stopped, jumped off the motorbike and ran away as soon as they saw what had happened in front of them.
Two farmers who were near the road saw the shooting. They recognized the car as belonging to Burma Army soldiers from IB 23 stationed at a camp next to the Upper Yeywa dam site.
After the men had been shot, two of the Burmese soldiers came and picked up the motorbikes and rode them away, in the direction of their camp. The other soldiers then drove away in their car towards their camp, leaving the two bodies on the road.
After the soldiers had gone, the two farmers didn’t dare go and see the bodies, but went to Shwe Kyaung village and told the headman what had happened. Fifteen villagers, including the headman, came and collected the bodies, and buried them at 2.30 pm that day. No one dared complain to the Burma Army about the killing.
Details of the villagers killed are as follows:
- Sai Ba, aged 43, son of Lung Saw Bay Da and Ba Pong (married Nang Aye Khin and have 2 daughters)
- Sai Daw Na, aged 29, son of Lung Nan Di Ya and Ba Yuay (married Nang Mya Oo Sar)
The Upper Ye Ywa dam is being constructed on the Namtu/ Myitnge river with involvement of Swiss, German, Japanese and Chinese companies. It is strongly opposed by local communities, and in May 2016, the Burma Army launched a fierce offensive to clear the Shan State Progress Party/Shan State Army (SSPP/SSA) from near the dam site, despite an existing bilateral ceasefire agreement. The Burma Army tortured, killed and used villagers as human shields during the offensive.
About 30 Burma Army troops from IB 23 are stationed at the dam site to give security to the construction workers.
2.Farmer tortured by LIB 578 troops in Mong Kung on suspicion of being RCSS/SSA spy
After fighting between troops of Burma Army LIB 578 and the Restoration Council of Shan State (RCSS/SSA) on March 18, 2018, near Wang Mong village, Mong Kung township, southern Shan State, the Burma Army troops tied up and severely tortured a local farmer, accusing him of being an RCSS/SSA spy.
The fighting broke out at 9 am that day, between about 95 Burma Army troops from LIB 578, based in Larngkhur, who had been deployed into Mong Kung township, and the RCSS/SSA. The gunfire caused panic in Wang Mong village (which has about 100 households), and about 80 children ran crying from the local school (where they were studying Shan) back to their homes. The fighting lasted about one hour.
That afternoon, at 4:30 pm, Sai Myint, the 35-year-old son of Lung Saw Shwe and Ba Hseng Tun, living in Wang Mong village, went to his farm about two miles north of Wang Mong village, in order to feed hay to his cow. When the Burma Army troops saw him, they came up to him and interrogated him. They accused him of coming to spy on their movements for RCSS. “You came here to see whether we had left the area or not, right?” they asked him.
Sai Myint insisted that he had just come to feed his cow, but they did not believe him. They tied his hands behind his back, beat him with a rifle butt, and kicked him all over, till he was bleeding from his head and other parts of his body.
At about 6 pm, the troops released, him, giving him 10,000 kyats (about USD 7.50) to treat his wounds.
The RCSS/SSA is a signatory of the Nationwide Ceasefire Agreement.
Sai Hor Hseng +66: 62- 941-9600 (English, Shan)
Sai Yord Luen +66: 97- 143-1530 (Burmese, Shan)
Sai Hseng Tai +66: 81- 474-5604 (Burmese, Shan)
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