Freedom Memoirs – Day 334

The final day of 2021 began with the sounds of multiple bomb blasts in Yangon. Khit Thit Media reported that a bomb blasted at a traffic police outpost in Shwepyitha Township around 6.15am. Thaketa Township also saw three explosions this morning: one at 5.30 am, another at 6.20am, and the last one at 7.20am. Thaketa residents said that they heard gunshots as well. More explosions were reported throughout the day: one in Sanchaung Township’s municipal office in the morning, and another around 2pm in South Okkalar Township. In addition, YPDF-Bahan and Anonymous Force collaborated an arson attack on a CCTV box near Tarmwe Market in Tarmwe Township earlier today. The bomb blasts are reminders to urbanites that the country is at war. 

News came from Demoso Township, Karenni (Kayah) State that regime forces clashed with Karenni alliance forces the entire day. Since regime forces launched offensive attack with excessive forces near Ngwe Taung Dam, Demoso PDF, Loikaw PDF, Central Region Special Operations, Karenni Nationalities Defense Force (KNDF) and KGZ joined forces to defend the junta forces. Clashes broke out around 9am this morning, and around 3.40pm, regime forces dropped aerial bombs with fighter jets at the Karenni forces. A local told Khit Thit Media that the sounds of gunfire and bomb blasts were heard from Demoso Town and Ngwe Taung Dam. Details of injury from both sides are not disclosed so far.

In Karen State, regime forces and Karen National Liberation Army (KNLA) clashed for five times today, DVB News reported. Nine soldiers from regime sides were killed at the fighting in Thaton District, and one regime soldier killed at the clash near Kayin Lay Jetty according to a KNLA fighter. Similarly, more fightings broke out near Myo Haung Village and Kyar Inn Seikkyi Village of Kawkareik Township, and Lay Kay Kaw Township as well. Details are yet to be reported. Karen National Union (KNU) warned travellers from Kawkareik and Myawaddy towns of the ongoing heavy artillery attacks and potential airstrike by regime forces.

Since our fight for democracy changed lanes from non-violent protests to armed resistance, brave fighters from Sagaing Region have been fighting with the lawless thugs of Min Aung Hlaing’s army. These fighters mainly use ambush and guerrilla attacks at the military convoys with denotation, which consequently caused severe defeat on regime’s side. Today, Myanmar Now media reported that regime’s forces, including Pyu Saw Htee thug groups, have been wearing monks’ robes as disguises to avoid attacks from the resistance forces. Taze-Tiger group leader Bo Kyar told Myanmar Now that if they do not attack regime forces, it is dangerous for resistance fighters, but if they wrongfully attack real monks, it will be devastating. This cowardice tactic by regime forces put PDFs in a tight spot, but Bo Kyar said that they requested their networks in villages to report when monks travelled so that resistance fighters can differentiate the movements of real monks and regime forces in disguise. 

On the other hand, the lawlessness of regime forces does not spare the lives of ordinary people. The Taninthayi Times reported that a man died in the police custody with signs of torture and knife wounds in Myeik City. On the night of December 26, Ko Ye Ko was drunk and had a fight with his wife. Due to the noise from the quarrel, his neighbour reported the police. Later on, about 20 troops, police and soldiers combined, came to arrest Ko Ye Ko. Report said that he somehow managed to escape that night, but later turned himself in on the next day. On December 29, his family was informed to admit him to hospital, but unfortunately it was too late and Ko Ye Ko was dead by then. His dead body showed bruises and knife wounds so his family assumed that he died of severe torture by regime forces. Ko Ye Ko, in his 30s, is survived by his wife and a young child. 

National Unity Government (NUG)’s Minister for Human Rights Affair U Aung Myo Min told People’s Spring Media that NUG has been planning to sue the coup leader Min Aung Hlaing and his lackeys at an Australian court. He said that it is possible for the case to be filed at the Australian court due to the universal jurisdiction. NUG’s Ministry of Human Rights Affair submitted the atrocities and mass killings committed by Min Aung Hlaing’s army to the United Nations Human Rights Council and Security Council as well. U Aung Myo Min said that his ministry has been advocating the international community to impose diplomatic sanctions, to impose arms embargo, and to hold Min Aung Hlaing’s army accountable for their crimes. Maybe Min Aung Hlaing should instruct its lackeys to block DHL deliveries from Australia too.

This evening, NUG’s Interim President Duwa Lashi La gave New Year speech, appreciating and acknowledging brave souls that gave their lives, and the public that continued to resist the military regime in any form. The interim president summarised the NUG’s work done in the past 11 months. The 20 minute long speech also showed gratitude towards Ethnic Armed Organisations (EAOs) for opening their arms for people defense forces (PDFs), providing training and sheltering them. The speech concluded with the NUG’s commitment to build a peaceful, inclusive and prosperous federal democratic nation. 2021 was the most difficult year for many of us, but with whatever resilience and strength left, we will march on to the new year.

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