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Following a fire trail

January 12th, 2023  •  Author:   Myanmar Witness  •  2 minute read
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Attacks in Sar Htone and Htan Zin village tracts in early December

Report Published: 12 Jan 2023

Key Event Details

  • Location of Incident: Sar Htone (ဆားထုံး) & Htan Zin (ထန်းဇင်) village tracts in Salingyi Township, Sagaing State

  • Date/Time of Incident: 

    • Multiple events between 30 November 2022 and 1 December 2022

  • Alleged Perpetrator(s) and/or Involvement: 

    • State Administration Council (SAC) troops

    • People’s Defence Forces (PDF)

  • Conclusions:

    • Multiple fires have occurred in four villages across the Sar Htone and Htan Zin village tracts.

    • Using sentinel imagery, Myanmar Witness identified around 210 burnt houses.

    • User-generated content (UGC) showing the fires was analysed and verified by Myanmar Witness.

    • Two elderly civilians allegedly died during the events; however, the cause of death remains unknown. One of the deceased civilians was visible within the analysed UGC.


On the evening of 30 November 2022, the SAC armed forces reportedly entered the town of Htan Zin (ထန်းဇင်), where they allegedly looted homes and set fire to property. The following morning, the forces moved on to the towns of Let Pan Kyun Lay (လက်ပံကျွန်းလေး), Let Pan Kyun Gyi (လက်ပံကျွန်းကြီး), and Taw Kyaung (တောကျောင်း). UGC and satellite footage shows  extensive fire damage to these towns. During these attacks, two elderly people were allegedly killed. Footage of the corpses were identified by Myanmar Witness, and although they cannot be geolocated to the scene of the events, techniques such as reverse-image search show that the images have not been indexed by search engines in previous contexts.

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