Freedom Memoirs – Day 250

It’s been 250 days since Min Aung Hlaing forcibly took power on the morning of February 1. Since then, his State Administration Council (SAC) has killed more than 1160 civilians and detained more than 7100 people who resisted the military regime according to Assistance Association Political Prisoners (AAPP). Due to the insecurity caused by regime soldiers, over 236,000 people, from 12 out of 14 states/regions, fled from their homes in the first half of 2021 as recorded by the Internal Displacement Monitoring Center (IDMC). To overthrow Min Aung Hlaing’s regime, brave resistance fighters, together with ethnic armed forces, are waging a defensive, just war, and civilians are exposed to insecurity on a daily basis. And who put our country into the chaos? It’s Min Aung Hlaing. 

In the name of a defensive war, People Defense Forces (PDFs) across the country launch attacks at the regime’s forces, and today is no exception. Today around 9am, Pale PDF and fellow local resistance fighters jointly attacked at the regime forces in Pale and Sarlingyi townships of Sagaing Region, killing at least five regime soldiers. In addition, a military truck on its way to Sarlingyi township was detonated with landmines, killing one and injuring three regime soldiers. In Taze township of same region, a shootout took place between regime soldiers and resistance forces, killing 18 from the regime side according to Khit Thit Media. Local media from Chin State, Zalen reported that about 50 explosions blasted today in Saw township, Magway Region as fighting broke out between Yaw PDF and junta forces. Since PDFs are getting stronger in Chin State, Magway and Sagaing Region, rumour circulated that the military would launch massive attacks on October 9 and 10. As such, locals from these three regions flee from their homes to find a safe place.

But these revolt in central plain region is not the only warfront that the regime has been facing. In Mongkoe area of Muse township, Northern Shan State, SAC forces confronted with Kokang’s Myanmar National Democratic Alliance Army (MNDAA) this morning. According to DVB News report, SAC forces used all sorts of weapons including heavy artillery, harming the civilians. In Karen State, Pai Kyon village, an outpost of Karen Border Guard Force (BGF), which followed orders from the regime, was attacked and at least seven soldiers were killed. Khit Thit Media reported that on October 6 alone, 16 battles broke out between KNU and regime forces in KNU’s Brigade 5 area, killing 16 from regime side including a captain and injuring 26. In addition to these ethnic areas, conflicts occur in Karenni (Kayah) and Kachin states every other day as well.

Today, National Unity Government (NUG)’s Ministry of Defense (MOD) reported that 690 conflicts/battles broke out from September 1 to 30. In the report released by Training and Research Department of the MOD, the conflicts included armed confrontations, regime’s assaults at civilians, attacks at regime’s establishments, and explosions. Majority of the conflicts took place in Sagaing Region with 184 conflicts, followed by Yangon Region with second highest number of attacks at the regime’s establishments, and Mandalay Region saw third highest conflicts in the month of September. Among these encounters, 768 regime soldiers were killed and 220 were injured. From the people’s side, 164 were killed and 109 were injured. 

However, such defeats do not prevent the regime soldiers from continuously performing raids and abductions. In Sagaing Region, Depayin township, junta soldiers occupied Myin Te village since October 5, destroyed private properties and abducted two villagers as they left after four days. In Taninthayi Region, Thayat Chaung township, pro-military thug group Pyu Saw Htee members abducted a Buddhist monk and five other civilians on October 7. On the same day, home of an NLD member was searched and destroyed by the same Pyu Saw Htee group. 

We have passed two-third of a calendar year under the regime, but non-violent protest rallies are still staged in many part of the country. Today, guerrilla protest was observed in Yangon while Mandalay boasted with marching strike rejecting the military regime. People-less signage protests were seen in Minbu township, Magway Region, Meikhtila town of Mandalay Region, home to military air forces, and Launglon township of Taninthayi Region. At this point, nobody, not even the murderous military, can stop the protesters from several villages/townships in Yinmabin, Sarlingyi, Myaing, Taze of Sagaing Region. They have been fearlessly taking the streets despite the regime’s attacks on them. 

Last week, Yangon Region Chief Minister U Phyo Min Thein said in the court that he bribed State Counsellor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi. Yesterday, RFA News reported that U Phyo Min Thein’s wife Daw Khin Mi Mi Kywe was held as a hostage during the court hearing last week where the husband was forced to testify the false statement. The news does not come as a surprise to us since we have witnessed the regime taking young children and old parents as hostages or shooting a 7-year-old on her father’s lap.

Last night, news reported that regime forces arrested about 250 partygoers at Brave Bar in Mayangone township, Yangon. Later in the morning, netizens shared that detained people were released with bail money of 10 lakh per person, which would fund the regime forces, but some offsprings of military generals were released with no bail. Although the country is in jeopardy and economy is free falling, there is always a group of people who can still dance and get drunk. But these parties are usually held discreetly, only among the networks of children of military generals and cronies. We can’t say we are unhappy about these privileged younglings getting arrested while our students and resistance fighters are giving their lives for democracy and freedom which would eventually benefit these democracy freeloaders in the end.

To end today’s entry on a good note, European Parliament voted to recognise NUG as the legitimate representatives of Myanmar, and Committee Representing Pyidaungsu Hluttaw (CRPH) as a legitimate legislative body. Meanwhile, NUG’s Representative to United Nations U Kyaw Moe Tun was honoured with John S. McCain Freedom Award by the International Republican Institute. While we appreciate these “support” and “recognition” to our resistance democratic forces, what we really need is practical and tangible support to prevent the regime from killing more innocent people. Let’s be real. How about militarily supporting, maybe selling weapons, to NUG’s defense ministry? That’s something to think about.

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