On the last day of Myanmar year, the Committee Representing Pyidaungsu Hluttaw (CRPH) today announced long-awaited cabinet lineup, which lifted our spirits. The National Unity Government (NUG) covered 11 ministries and headed by a prime minister Mahn Win Khaing Than, the same Super Mahn who was announced as an interim Vice President in March. Of course the detained president and state counsellor still hold their initial positions, which some folks questioned the necessity. From the Vice President, and Prime Minister to 10 union ministers and 12 deputy ministers, the lineup has a decent mix in terms of ethnic representatives, gender and age. However, Shan and Rakhine representatives are still missing. CRPH also announced that more ministries will be extended later, so we would continue hoping for more inclusive lineup. Majority of netizens seem to be fairly satisfied with appointed cabinet members despite usual doubts from CRPH watchdogs. Meanwhile, TNLA of the Northern Alliance, has welcomed the newly formed government and we are likely to see recognition from international community in the coming days as well.
During the press conference led by the CRPH and NUG, newly appointed ministers mentioned that People’s Defense Forces would be formed soon prior to the formation of federal army, which was much anticipated among the public. However, Myanmar people are in dire need of protection since the terrorist army is abducting and killing people on a daily basis. Last night in Kani township, Sagaing Region, six people died due to attacks by terrorist army. In Myingyan in Mandalay region, terrorist army kept shooting at the protest camp last night resulting in two deaths of civilians. Four university students in Yangon’s Tarmwe township were also arrested yesterday. Moreover, junta’s soldiers raided two monasteries in Mandalay last night with excessive force, and arrested two volunteers at one location. The latest number from Assistance Association for Political Prisoners (AAPP) notes that 726 people have been killed and 3151 people are in arbitrary arrest. These barbaric activities can’t drag.
According to the General Strike Committee (GSC), today’s theme of protest is Silent Strike to remember the lives lost in this revolution. Several cities joined the silent strike but guerrilla protests were organised in many parts of the country. In Yangon this evening, Thingyan food donation was raided by terrorist soldiers, a few residents were also abducted. The courageous people of Mandalay continued with marching strikes in the streets, boasting approximately 1000 people in the protest. Despite the violent abduction of prominent leader Wai Moe Naing, people of Monywa kept on marching with motorbikes. In Kachin State, residents of Hpakant marched on the streets of the small town, demanding democracy and thanking Kachin Independence Army (KIA) for attacking the terrorist military.
Speaking of KIA, the armed group has been launching attacks at the terrorist military’s base in Tanai township since yesterday. Reports said that when the terrorist military suffered heavy casualties, it launched airstrikes on KIA with two fighter jets so the armed group had to retreat. Due to the increasing clashes between the armed group and terrorist military in many parts of Kachin State, the number of internally displaced people (IDPs) is also growing. In Sagaing Region, General Sai Tun of Shanni Nationalities Army (SNA) said that a clash broke out between SNA and terrorist military in Homalin township yesterday, resulted in one death of terrorist solider, and that more clashes are imminent since the military deployed more troops. It looks like terrorist army has opened war fronts in several areas of the country, and is apparently losing unless it uses heavy weaponries.
Tomorrow, a new year begins in Myanmar calendar. With a new government, we will leave the armed thugs behind and move towards our federal dream.