Freedom Memoirs – Day 350

Yangon residents woke up to the news of an explosion at a crony-owned gas station in Ahlone Township around 4am this morning. Special Task Agency of Burma (STA) blasted two bombs at Htoo gas station, fire broke out and the entire station was burned down. Employees were able to escape before the fire which was extinguished in about 45 minutes. Htoo Group is owned by Tay Za, a notorious crony who has close ties with successive military generals and exploited the country’s natural resources for his own profits. In the earlier days of coup, news report came out that he served as arms dealer for Min Aung Hlaing. It’s a bit ironic that we find comfort in the destruction of someone’s business but netizens show no sympathy towards Tay Za. 

Today, NUG’s Yangon Regional Military Command announced that, as a part of Pyan Hlwar Aung military operation, urban guerrilla fighters have coordinated attacks at regime forces in five townships in Yangon in nine days, including the attack at Htoo gas station this morning. Other attacks include two remote-controlled bomb blasts at electricity supply office in Dagon Myo Thit (East) Township on January 8, a gunfire attack at regime forces near Township Administration Office of Twante Township on January 10, an attack at a military outpost in Teikkyi Township on January 11, and a bomb blast at Township Electricity Supply Office in Thongwa Township on January 14. Two regime troops were killed and many injured according to the Regional Command. 

Elsewhere, armed conflicts accelerated. News came from Karen State that Thingan Nyi Naung Police Station in Myawaddy Township was attacked by an armed group around 8pm last night. Gunfires were exchanged after the attack, locals told Delta News Agency. This morning around 6am, fightings resumed between Karen National Union (KNU) and regime forces in Kawkareik, and heavy artillery were used by junta soldiers according to Burma VJ news. Clashes started on January 14 near Kawkareik Asia highway since regime forces invaded into KNU’s territory. In yesterday’s fighting, it was reported that junta forces used military choppers for aerial attacks. It seems that regime forces use aerial attacks in almost every clash they engage with resistance forces.

In Karenni (Kayah) State, regime forces launched aerial attacks with two fighter jets at Nan Mae Khone Town around 6pm this evening. A Karenni fighter confirmed the attack to Khit Thit Media, and said that resistance fighters and regime forces did not have prior confrontation in Nan Mae Khone. Now, residents are fleeing from their homes, and detail of the damage is yet to be reported. 

Today, chairperson of All Burma Students’ Democratic Front (ABSDF) Ye Baw Than Khae confirmed to Khit Thit Media that the front has been engaging in clashes against the military regime. With its battalions in Kachin and Karen states, ABSDF forces fight alongside ethnic armed groups. Ye Baw Than Khae told Khit Thit Media, “We are against the military dictatorship and now the entire country is fighting the regime so we can’t just sit back. We have been fighting since the beginning of Spring Revolution”. A quick history lesson: ABSDF is a student front formed on November 1, 1988, after the 8888 Uprising. During the democratic transition period, the front signed Nationwide Ceasefire Agreement (NCA) which now has no meaning since all hell broke loose after the 2021 coup. It is encouraging to witness new and old resistance fighters joining hand in hand in this revolution. 

In Mindat Town of Chin State, the education board of Mindat People’s Administration Group has been providing classes for more than 6000 students from 136 villages for the past three months. The education board also trained about 850 volunteer students to operate classes in villages. However, teaching had to be put on hold in some villages due to the regime forces. Trying to disrupt everything that people do, junta forces from Mindat Town have been arresting and torturing some of the volunteer teachers. School supplies, medicines, food supplies and sheltering items such as blankets and sleeping bags were confiscated at toll gates, and some were destroyed according to Mizzima’s news report. 

Now onto the good news! There is no denying that South Korea has been a wonderful friend for the people of Myanmar in this revolution. People of South Korea share empathy to us since they went through similar experience in Gwangju Uprising in 1980. Residents of Gwangju donated Won 100,000 for Myanmar, and Gwangju Alliance group transferred the donation money to NUG’s representative U Yan Naing Tun. Half of the donation money will be allocated for humanitarian aid, and other half will be transferred to NUG’s Ministry of Planning, Finance and Investment. 

Yesterday, residents of Myaung Township in Sagaing Region rallied to support the NUG and to reject the military regime. Twelve local resistance forces provided security for the protesters and the rally was successfully organised despite regime soldiers’ presence in Myaung Town. Protests continued today in several townships of Sagaing Region such as Yinnmabin, Monywa. Protesters from Yangon also took to the street in guerrilla fashion, singing and chanting revolution songs and chants, igniting the revolution spirit among city dwellers.

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