Freedom Memoirs – Day 196

Resistance comes in many shapes and forms in Myanmar. Just a reminder to Min Aung Hlaing and his associates that just because people are not publicly displaying their defiance against the military regime like we did in the beginning of this revolution, it doesn’t mean people have given up. Today, the National Unity Government’s Spring (Nwayoo) Lottery opened today at 4pm, and even though the sale period is till 10pm, it was announced that the lottery ticket quota for today had been sold out within an hour. We hope the military and its supporters know that we will continue to defy in whatever shapes or forms as long as they are in charge.

Today, there were many acts of defiance reported in Yangon. At least five explosions near ward administration offices were reported this morning in Kyimyindaing Township. No buildings or humans were injured in the explosions. Another bomb explosion was also reported in Sagaing Region’s Monywa City by the clock tower at the center of the city at 8am as well. People across the country also continued to defy the military regime by holding protests and marching the streets amid many obstacles. As usual, residents from Tanintharyi Region’s Launglon and Yebyu townships; Magway Region; Karen State’s Hpa-An, Mandalay Region and Sagaing Region’s Kale, Taze and Monywa townships came out, calling for the end to the viscous military rule in Myanmar, and rejecting the newly formed so-called caretaker government. 

Just as people defy them, the military’s security forces also continue to inflict terror upon the citizens by arbitrarily arresting anyone they feel like abducting. On the night of August 14 and early morning of August 15, at least nine civilians, including three teachers who had joined the Civil Disobedience Movement, from Sagaing Region’s Kalay Township were abducted. The teachers were abducted from Kalay town, and six other detained civilians were residents of Yarza Gyo village, and none of their family members were not given any valid reasons for their arrests. 

Yesterday, we reported that fighting had resumed between the junta’s troops and Chinland Defense Force (CDF) in Chin State since August 13. A spokesperson from CDF said that the regime’s and CDF troops clashed this morning at 16-mile on Mindat-Matupi road with many injuries and casualties on the junta’s side. The regime’s forces had reportedly burned down two civilians’ houses near the 16-mile crossroad and continued to fire heavy artillery near the surrounding area as well, CDF saying the fighting could get more severe in coming days. In another part of Chin State, more attacks from the regime’s forces were also reported in Kanpetlet Township this morning at 11am. About one mile outside of the town Kanpetlet near Kant Thar Yone village, a 30-year-old Ko Htan Htone and his 4-year-old son were hit by stray bullets of the regime’s soldiers in their own homes. A resident told Myanmar Now that the regime side claimed they were shooting at a runaway suspect and that it was an accident. “How could it be an accident since the victims were shot inside their own home,” the resident retorted. 

In eastern Myanmar, more clashes between the regime and local People’s Defense Force (PDF) erupted in Southern Shan State in between Pinlaung and Pekon townships. Some news reports said the clashes began on August 15 at 11am, and some news reports claimed the clashes started on the morning of August 14 and went on for 11 hours. Pekon-People’s Defense Force (PDF) announced that a joint force between PDFs from Pekon, Demoso and Mobye combined with the forces from the Karenni Nationalities Defense Force (KNDF) and Karenni Army (KnA) defended against the offensive attacks from the regime’s troops coming from the Pinlaung side. Pa-O National Army (PNO) reportedly joined forces with the regime’s troops according to RFA Burmese, but it was yet to be confirmed. Around two people from PDF were reported to have been injured from the morning clashes. In the afternoon, over 30 military trucks with about 100 reinforcement came from the Loikaw, and shelled around Khaung Mai village before reaching Pekon, injuring one more PDF fighter. But on the regime’s side, more than five were injured, Pekon-PDF reported. 

In other news, a spokesperson from Chin National Front/Chin National Army (CNF/CNA) said the first COVID-19 vaccination program has started in CNF/CNA headquarters at Camp Victoria in Chin State with India-made Covidshield vaccines, Chin CNF/CNA authorities also reported that around 15,000 CDF/PDF members are being trained with them, many are expected to graduate soon. The Arakan Army’s Major General Tun Mrat Naing gave an interview with Arakkha Media today, saying that they have instructed their ground force commanders to avoid initiating conflicts to not make the Rakhine people’s lives harder in the midst of COVID-19 third wave and heavy monsoon season.

Myanmar is heading into its fourth consecutive imposed-public holidays this week, with businesses, banks and schools all on hold to curb the further spread of COVID-19. New cases have plateaued a bit and there are less death toll reported daily as well, but we all still need to stay alert and vigilant as usual to not cause another wave here. 

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