Freedom Memoirs – Day 224

Military-owned Mytel telecom towers continued to drop like flies across Myanmar since the National Unity Government (NUG) announced a state of emergency on September 7. Within five days, over 60 telecom towers from four regions were reportedly destroyed by both local People’s Defence Force (PDFs) and unidentified underground groups according to compiled data from DVB News today. Over 40 Mytel telecom towers from Sagaing Region, over 10 towers from Magway Region, and six Mytel and three other telecom towers in Mandalay Region, and one Mytel tower from Mon State have been destroyed as of September 12. 

The military council also admitted in state media’s newspapers today that there have been 2,390 bomb attacks between February 1 and September 9, and 68 telecom towers had been destroyed so far. There is also a directive from the military regime to increase security around military-owned Mytel and government-controlled MPT telecom towers spreading around on social media. Bomb explosions were also reported today in Yangon’s Kamayut, Ahlone and South Okkalapa townships. The explosion in South Okkalapa reportedly injured one civilian and a child collecting garbage. 

We know there are some people who are all violence~ is not the answer, and we could feel a little bit bad about these incidents. But just to put things into perspectives for all of us, let us remind everyone that since Min Aung Hlaing forcibly took control of the country, 1,080 innocent people had been killed; 8,048 people had been arbitrarily arrested with 6,398 people currently detained/sentenced, and 1,984 are still on the run, being away from their loved ones. These are 17,000++ people directly impacted by the actions of selfish military men within 223 days. (Source: AAPP as of September 11) We could go on and on about how millions of people living inside and outside Myanmar are also being affected by what Min Aung Hlaing and his associates are doing every single day, but we will just continue with our recaps as the news will speak louder than our rants.

In Magway Region’s Taungdwingyi Township, over 10 civilians from three villages—Tite Pwal, Phat Than Tat and Nyaung Hmaw were abducted on the morning of September 11 by the regime forces. As usual no reasons were given to the family members, and according to the residents, even girls were included in the six people who were arbitrarily arrested from Phat Than Tat village. In Yangon’s Bahan Township, junta’s forces raided a house around 9pm last night in New Yay Tar Shay Street looking for a woman. When they could not locate the woman, the regime soldiers reportedly took three family members, including the parents, as hostages instead. Around the same time in North Dagon Township, Ko Aung Ko Lwin, a driver of the vehicle, was shot dead by regime soldiers near Bailey Bridge when he didn’t stop the car for a security check. A woman passenger was also shot in her leg and abdomen and reported to be in a critical condition. 

A fight broke out between the military regime’s forces and the joint force of Chin National Front (CNF) and Chinland Defense Force (CDF) on September 10 in Lungler village of Chin State’s Thantlang Township. On the afternoon of September 10, the military had been reportedly dropping bombs onto the village, causing over 200 residents to flee to India’s Mizoram State. One good news from this incident was that the joint force of CNF and CDF had seized the military’s outpost in Lungler, and the police and soldiers stationed at the outpost decided to give up arms and joined the civil disobedience movement, DVB News reported today. No further details had been provided so far. 

Fighting between the local People’s Defence Force (PDFs) and junta’s forces also continued in Magway Region’s Gantgaw Township today. A resident reported to DVB News that the regime forces stormed into Htwe Hlaw village this morning to burn down, causing many civilians to flee. On the PDF side, they have issued a statement, warning the civilians not to travel on Gantgaw-Kalay road as the clashes with the military troops are intensifying in the surrounding area. 

In another news showing how disgusting the military regime is, Myanmar Now reported on September 11 that the military council had illegally taken control of Sagaing-People’s Defence Force (SPDF) Facebook page for 10 days, and attempted to extort money from the donors and used the page to trap many into arrest. A person who managed SPDF’s page was arrested at the end of August and only on September 9, others realized his arrest. During that time, the page was under the control of the military and the page asked for donations through KBZ Pay and Wave Money as well as those who want to join the PDF were asked to provide 12 personal details. A source told Myanmar Now that the arrested person only had access to post text and photos, and that the page had been back in the control of Spring Revolution Alliances-SRA who oversee 15 PDFs in Sagaing Region. However, about 60 people had been contacted via the page by the military council and could not confirm how many had been contacted and arrested so far. 

Across the country, people continued to take to the streets to protest against the military coup in Myanmar, and demand the United Nations (UN) to accept the National Unity Government as the legitimate government of Myanmar. While the UN did almost nothing for us in the past seven months, people of Myanmar still hoped that the UN would finally step up in the credential challenge happening in the next general assembly next week. 

We hope the UN would see and hear the voices of our people in Sagaing Region’s Taze, Salingyi and Yinmarbin townships; Tanintharyi Region’s Launglon Township; Karen State’s Win Ye Township; Mandalay Region’s Madaya Township, and the voices of Mandalay’s Sangha Union Monks; Myanmar migrants workers in Malaysia and Thailand; students in liberated areas who are undergoing military trainings; Myanmar diaspora in Czech Republic; the youths of Yangon’s Mayangone Township, and finally the internally displaced residents from the border of Chin State and Magway Region who had to flee from their homes in Shwe Aung Thar village due to violent raids from the military’s lackeys. To show support for our internal forces, about 500 residents of Kachin State’s Hpakant Township also marched the street today, chanting for the success of the joint force of Kachin Independence Army (KIA) and local PDFs. 

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