Freedom Memoirs – Day 210

An excerpt from a Russia’s Politic Magazine feature with Min Aung Hlaing revealed that Min Aung Hlaing referred to himself as not just a soldier, but a nation-building soldier. “I am a soldier. But personally, due to the times and circumstances of our country, I committed myself to nation-building work. It doesn’t mean I am a politician, but more of a nation builder. I am only interested in developing our nation more than politics,” said Min Aung Hlaing. The irony of his statement is that since he has taken over as the leader of this country, everything in Myanmar has been irreparably damaged. We don’t know when this interview was conducted, but RiSE News reported this excerpt today. 

News cycle today observed many clashes erupting in many ethnic regions, and arbitrary arrests also continued across the country. Youths in Yangon had been targeted by the regime’s forces in recent days, and two young people from Yangon’s Hlaing Tharyar Township were abducted by armed plain-clothed soldiers today. Four gunshots were fired in Ward 20 on Anawrahta Road at the time of the arrest, and one was reportedly injured from the shooting, a resident told DVB News. In the southern part of Myanmar, four women were abducted this morning around 8am in Tanintharyi Region’s Launglon Township for no reason. “There was a motorbike rally this morning in Sitpyal village and we peacefully dispersed shortly after. The women who were arrested weren’t even a part of the protest. They were volunteers with funeral services and were grabbed on their way home,” a resident said. 

Many military informants were reported to have been shot to death this morning in Ayeyarwady Region and Sagaing Region. An informant from Ayeyarwady Region’s Kangyidaunt Township, who had been tipping the local police off, was shot at his home at 6am this morning, and another one was shot by an unidentified man from a motorbike in Sagaing Region’s Shwebo town at 11am.  

Mon State reported its first ever clashes with the military troops in Ye Township on the night of August 28 in Maw Kanin village. Ye-People’s Defence Force (PDF) launched an attack against the regime’s No.106 Battalion around 8:30pm and lasted for 30 minutes until the military troops fired back with heavy artillery. This is the first ever attack from Ye-PDF in the area, and this is a warning for the soldiers to join the civil disobedience movement according to Ye-PDF’s statement. 

A clash between the regime’s troops and Karen National Union (KNU)’s Brigade-1 was reported in Hpa-An Township this morning with three casualties from the junta’s side. The clashes occurred at 7am and lasted for 15 minutes, KNU’s Information team reported. 

Clashes between the regime and ethic armed organizations are intensifying in northern Shan State as well. A joint force between Kachin Independence Army (KIA) and Myanmar National Democratic Alliance Army (MNDAA) were fighting with the junta’s troops on and off for an entire day on August 28. According to a resident, the fighting was just between the regime’s troops and KIA, but MNDAA joined KIA in the fight around 5:30pm and it went on for over three hours until 8:45pm. The clashes claimed the lives of battalion commanders from the junta side, two Captains and one Major with hundreds of casualties reported from three battalions that were in the clashes. The clashes were reportedly still going on today since 4am, a resident said. Heavy artillery shelling by the military troops had reportedly killed four civilians from Namha village, including a young child when their house was shelled.

In another region, Karenni Nationalities Defense Force (KNDF) said the joint force between Karenni Army (KA) and KNDF clashed with the regime’s troops in Karenni (Kayah) State’s Loilen Lay Township four times on August 28 alone. There were casualties from the regime’s side—one captain and 12 soldiers, and the KA-KNDF joint force also confiscated the weapons and ammunition from the junta’s forces. The statement also said over 300 people were fleeing as the regime’s forces launched offensive attacks towards Tilong village tract and surrounding areas. 

In Kachin State’s Waingmaw Township, one civilian’s life was taken by the arbitrary shooting of the soldiers from No.58 battalion in Ma Dane village on August 27, and three civilians were also arrested after the military troops raided the village on August 28. The raid had destroyed the villagers’ homes and people were also reportedly on the run due to insistent violent attacks from the regime’s troops. Residents claimed the three detainees were innocent, and one was grabbed while he was in the midst of shopping, and the other two were grabbed from the road. 

Despite continuous arrests and violence happening left and right across the country, people from Mandalay and Sagaing regions still came out strongly to protest against the military regime. Today saw monks in Mandalay leading protest rallies and people of Sagaing Region marching the streets during night time. In Letpadaung area, protesters came out during the night of August 28—marching while hitting pots and pans. In Tanintharyi Region, youths hosted an early morning march before the sunrise in Launglong Township’s Yebyu village. Outside of the country, New York City Burmese Community (NYCBC) led a protest on the afternoon of August 28 in New York, calling for international bodies and governments to officially recognize National Unity Government. 

We’re reaching the seven-month mark of being under the control of the military regime, but as we can still see, many of us are still doing whatever we can, whether small or big, to win this revolution that started over 200 days ago. 

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