Freedom Memoirs – Day 254

Interesting news came from the ongoing trial of our elected leaders today. President U Win Myint said at the court hearing that two high rank generals asked him to retire from the president position “due to poor health condition” on the morning of February 1, or otherwise, his life would not be guaranteed. Petite but brave, U Win Myint rejected the regime’s demand, knowing that it was attached with death threat, because he was in perfectly good health. The detained president has spent most of his life being targeted by the military regimes for his pro-democracy efforts, and turning 70 next month, he still shows his resilience even in detention. 

We know that Min Aung Hlaing & co staged the coup not only for power but also for their economic interest. Today, Mizzima News exposed an internal meeting minute shared within Central Military Command. The meeting minute said that the commander from Central Command gave a directive to drive out squatters from free land in the central region, and to legalise the lands as military-owned properties. After the coup, there were incidents in Mandalay Region where villagers were forced to leave their homes as the regime forces claimed they were staying in military-owned land, as reported by Mizzima. Taking advantage of the chaotic situation in the country, the military’s wicked attempt to grab lands from civilians only makes us feeling disgusted at them even more. 

On the other hand, products from military conglomerate, one of the main sources of income to fund the regime, are boycotted across the country. Today, Shwe Phee Myay News reported that Ta’ang National Liberation Army (TNLA) banned selling of military products in its controlled areas. Vendors had to sign an agreement to stop selling military products, and remainders of military products at their shops were destroyed by TNLA soldiers. Nationwide, the public is continued to be advised to not purchase products from the military conglomerate in order to cut the military fund. 

On warfront, Karenni Nationalities Defense Force (KNDF) announced that the combined forces of KNDF and Karenni Army (KnA) detonated a military convoy with landmines this morning around 7:30am near Hta Le village in Hpruso township, Karenni (Kayah) State, and destroyed one military truck. Fighting broke out between the regime forces and resistance fighters for past four days in Hpruso and Bawlake townships. In the aftermath of yesterday’s fighting, regime soldiers raided Hta Le village, destroyed rice barns and killed livestocks according to DVB News. Due to the active conflicts, about 1000 villagers fled from their homes and took refuge in the forest. Shelter, medical and food supplies are needed according to a local. 

Fighting also broke out in Karen State today. Due to the random artillery shelling from the regime side, Karen National Liberation Army (KNLA), DKBA Separatist group and Eagle Brigade retaliated and resulted in a battle near Kaw Nwe village, Kawkareik township. The battle started around 10.50am and lasted until 1pm today, and six regime soldiers were killed according to the spokesperson from Eagle Brigade. Karen National Union (KNU) also announced today that Light Infantry Battalion 405 used six villagers as force labours during an active clash in Hpapun District on October 4, injuring one woman. 

Elsewhere, regime’s arbitrary arrests and killings are continued to be reported. In Taninthayi Region, Kawthaung township, Lonphaw village, regime soldiers opened fire to arrest a worker from rubber workshop, named Ko Lin Tun on October 10; however, Ko Lin Tun’s 11-year-old son Thiha Aung, who accompanied his father to workshop, was killed in the process. The father was injured in the leg and 20 of his fellow workers were arrested by the regime soldiers. The arrest was initiated by local Pyu Saw Htee members, accusing Ko Lin Tun as the responsible person for shooting the family members of Pyu Saw Htee leader according to Khit Thit Media.

Like young Thiha Aung, we have lost so many children in this revolution, both directly and indirectly killed by the regime soldiers. Yesterday in Nahtogyi township, Mandalay Region, two brothers saw an unexploded artillery shell while they were in the farmland, and brought it home. As curious as children can be, the younger brother knocked the shell with a rock, resulting in an explosion. The young child died instantly and the older one lost both of his limbs due to the incident. It was later reported that regime soldiers, who stationed in the village school, were drunkenly shooting artillery shells the day before, and the shells landed into people’s farmlands according to Khit Thit media. 

Initially, it was reported that ASEAN Envoy Erywan Yusof was scheduled to meet with a few political parties in Naypyidaw today. The meeting was to be held at the office of Union Election Commission formed by the regime, and participating political parties included military-proxy Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP), and seven other smaller political parties which lost the 2020 General Election. However, today’s news reports confirmed that the meeting was cancelled last minute and the reason was unknown although some claimed it was due to the fact that no representative of National League for Democracy, (NLD) would be present in the meeting.

News came from Chin State this morning that the regime sent two armoured military vehicles and 80 military trucks from Pakokku to Chin hills. Chinland Defense Force (CDF) talked to Irrawaddy News on October 10 that the regime had sent reinforcements to Kalay township in Sagaing Region, Hakha, Thantlang and Tedim towns in Chin State as in preparation for a large scale military operation. Due to the increasing reports on the reinforcement in this areas, UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) issued a statement on October 8 that showed concerns for the possibility of an imminent attack by the regime. We will keep resistance fighters in Sagaing, Magway regions and Chin State in our prayers.

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