Freedom Memoirs – Day 307

Today, student activists across the country mourn for the passing of Ko Hnin Aung, a prominent student leader as well as former member of All Burma Federation of Students’ Unions (ABFSU). Mizzima News reported that Ko Hnin Aung was shot and killed by Pyu Saw Htee, pro-military thug group, in Kantbalu Township of Sagaing Region yesterday for failing to stop his motorbike for inspection. Ko Hnin Aung was elected as an ethnic affairs representative in ABFSU in 2016, and actively participated in student-led protests such as education reform movement in 2015, campaign to amend 2008 Constitution. Hence, he was no stranger to the regime’s legal charges and imprisonment. Naturally, he took part in anti-regime movements in Mandalay since the coup, and now he gave his life for our revolution. May he rest in peace and power. 

Students play a crucial role in shaping Myanmar’s political landscape. Knowing the strength of youths, successive regimes see formation of youth associations, especially students’ unions as political threats. When the Spring revolution unfolded, we have witnessed the power and bravery of young people, thus, many students and young people across the country face arbitrary arrests from the regime. Today, Burma VJ news reported that three university students from Dawei were abducted by regime soldiers on November 30. Ko Htoo Myat Lwin, secretary of Dawei University Students’ Union, Ko Sai Ko Ko Tun and Ma La Wun Pyae Pyae Tun were abducted from their homes in Dawei. However, local news reported that Ma La Pyae Pyae Tun was later released. According to the Tanintharyi Times, at least 10 youths, including university students, have been abducted in one week.

As we reported perviously, and also in our monthly magazine, that Sagaing Region saw the highest number of clashes between regime forces and resistance fighters. This morning, local resistance force in Myaung Township (CDSOM) announced that it has controlled all five toll gates in Myaung Township. In the announcement, CDSOM said it will seize military-related products which pass by the gates and use for local resistance forces and local civilians, officially pledging to avoid corruption. In addition, two navy ships were seized by CDSOM. Later in the day, Irrawaddy News reported that regime’s reinforcement troops were sent to Myaung Township Police Station after the announcement by CDSOM. The latest development is yet to be confirmed but netizens prayed for the safety of PDF fighters since the murderous regime would do anything to retaliate. 

Clashes took place in another parts of Sagaing Region as well. Yesterday, a military convoy with 22 trucks travelling from Myin Mu to Monywa was detonated with landmines by the combination of five resistance forces. Led by Black Eagle Defense Force-MMU, the spokesperson of Black Eagle said that two military trucks were severely damaged, and the resistance fighters retreated successfully. In western part of Depayin Township, the combined forces of Galon PDF, Bo Zeya Squad and Sky Force launched attack at a regime front consisting of 80 troops on December 3. Local fighters told DVB News that at least 30 troops were killed. However, Depayin People’s Defense Force (PDF) announced that Ko Mya Win Ko, a striking CDM school teacher turned resistance fighter, was killed in one of the battles yesterday.

Despite being defeated miserably, the regime forces choose to continue harassing the lives of civilians. In Kawmhu Township, Yangon Region, junta soldiers abducted five civilians because two weapons went missing in Yay Kyaw Village. Detained villagers include a woman named Daw Nu Htwe, her 12-year-old son and three other civilians. A local villager told Irrawaddy News that junta soldiers accused two young villagers of stealing the guns and running away, hence, their parents were taken as hostages and would only be released upon return of the two young men.

News came from Rakhine State that a police officer Kyi Tun, who was posted in Myanmar-Bangladesh border forces, defected and joined the Arakan Army (AA). Junta forces traced and tried to arrest a motorcycle taxi driver who helped the defected police with transportation. However, when the taxi driver was nowhere to be found, the regime soldier arrested the brother of taxi driver, Ko Maung Khin Hla, on December 1 in Maungdaw Township. His whereabout is unknown for the time being.

Approaching three months since the declaration of defensive war by the NUG, Minister of Defense U Yee Mon said that the NUG has connected with about 90% of active resistance fighters in his interview with People’s Spring media today. He continued that about 8000 regime soldiers have defected and switched to the people’s side to this day. While armed conflicts accelerate, the peaceful protests haven’t slowed down too. From digital strikes to marching rallies, protests are still observed on the streets of Myanmar. The revolution spirit continues to ignite in us.

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