40-year-old man killed during military interrogation in Magway’s Chauk Township

November 3rd, 2021  •  Author:   Ko Phyo Wai Tun (Chauk Township)  •  3 minute read
Featured image

Phyo Wai Tun was beaten in front of his family by junta troops before he was arrested with his two brothers and accused of supporting the local PDF

By Myanmar Now

A 40-year-old man in Magway Region’s Chauk Township was killed during a military interrogation after troops accused him of supporting the local chapter of the anti-junta People’s Defence Force (PDF).

Owner of the Tun Lin Zabu boarding house Phyo Wai Tun and his two younger brothers were arrested in Gway Pin village by 20 soldiers from Infantry Battalion (IB) 13 at around midnight on Saturday.

Phyo Wai Tun was assaulted in front of his family by the soldiers before he was taken into junta custody.

“We knew it was going to be bad when he was brutally beaten during his arrest,” a friend of the victim told Myanmar Now. “They beat him for almost an hour at his house. They hit him in the chest with their rifle butts. He even got his jaw broken.”

The friend added that the brothers’ family tried to inquire about their condition at the IB 13 base in Chauk Township on Sunday morning, but received no response.

The following day, they were notified that Phyo Wai Tun had died, but were not allowed to view his body.

“They still have not told them his cause of death yet. They only told them that he had died and that they could come collect his ashes,” the friend said.

Phyo Wai Tun’s family reportedly buried his ashes in the Gway Pin cemetery on the same day.

The boarding house owner had participated in anti-dictatorship protests, but had no affiliation with any revolutionary organisations, the friend claimed.

He leaves behind a wife and two-year-old daughter.

At the time of reporting the condition of Phyo Wai Tun’s brothers—30-year-old Bhone Wai Tun and 24-year-old Show Wai Tun—was not known.

Myanmar Now tried to contact junta information officer Gen Zaw Min Tun regarding the arrest and death of Phyo Wai Tun in military custody but all calls went unanswered.

While there have been several military crackdowns on protests in Chauk, Phyo Wai Tun is the first detainee in the township known to have been killed during an interrogation.

“We can’t forgive or forget this incident but there’s not much we can do. We have no way to get justice for him,” his friend said.

According to data released on Tuesday by the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners, at least 1,233 civilians have been killed by the military council since Myanmar’s February 1 coup. More than 40 of these deaths have taken place during interrogations.

The junta has dismissed these figures as being exaggerated.

Original Post: Myanmar Now