Freedom Memoirs – Day 352

by mohingamatters

The regime forces and Karen National Union (KNU)’s forces have been confronting in Brigade 1 and 5 territories almost every day according to Salween Press. Karen National Liberation Army (KNLA), armed wing of KNU, has Brigade 1 in Thaton District, Mon State and Brigade 5 in Papun District, Karen State. KNLA forces denoted the joint forces of junta troops and Border Guard Force (BGF) yesterday around 5am in Thaton, killing at least 6 regime soldiers. Again in the evening, two KNLA battalions coordinated a landmine attack at a convoy with seven military trucks, destroying one truck according to KNLA source. A military chopper was seen landing in Bilin Township, and KNLA source assumed that it came to transport injured regime forces in Mae Chone and Mae Pali area, where KNLA forces seized a military outpost a few days ago.

In both urban and rural areas, attacks on regime soldiers resumed. This afternoon, guerrilla forces in Mandalay coordinated a bomb attack at junta soldiers in front of military owned Myawaddy Bank. The combined forces of ROM and YNO Mandalay PDF said that the attack killed two junta soldiers and no casualty from their side. In Sagaing Region, Tamu Township, Tamu PDF launched an attack at a private car used by the police force yesterday afternoon. The attack was carried out with handmade grenades, and killed five regime troops including three officers. The attack was followed by gunfire exchanged, and Tamu PDF managed to seize a few weapons from the police force as well. 

This afternoon around 3pm, a clash broke out between the combined force of regime troops and pro-military Pyu Saw Htee thug group members, and Taze local defense force and alliances in Thae Sar Kya Village in Taze Township of Sagaing Region. The battle emerged since regime troops trespassed the area where Taze PDF Battlion 10 controlled. Five soldiers from regime side were killed while one fighter from Tazi PDF also died in the clash according to Khit Thit Media. A brief engagement took place between CDF Matupi and regime forces this morning around 10am near Hte Bawi Village in Matupi Township of Chin State. CDF spokesperson told Khit Thit Media that it was not a battle, but rather a brief engagement, yet a CDF solider Salai Peng Seng was shot by a sniper. 

Basic Education General Strike Committee (BEGSC) announced today that one of their leaders was severely tortured during interrogation in Mandalay’s notorious interrogation center inside the palace compound. Four central committee member of the strike committee, including one female teacher, two male teachers and one student from Mandalay University Students’ Union, were detained by regime soldiers on October 31, 2021, and there had been no news about the detainees, and no contact with theirs families. On January 17, BEGSE released an urgent statement that one of their central committee members was tortured by having bamboo sticks thrust inside their rectums, and expressed grave concerns for life of their colleague. On January 3, Myanmar Now media quoted a doctor that such torture method was evidently used in interrogation center inside Mandalay Palace based on the prescribed medications to injured detainees.

More devastating news came from Myanmar Now media that two CDM railway workers from Mandalay were detained for more than a week, and no contact or news about them was heard. Forty-year-old Ko Lin Lin, train driver, was detained on January 7 together with two other colleagues at staff housing. His two colleagues were released the next day but Ko Lin Lin remains detained. One of the anonymous source of Myanmar Now media said that on the day of arrest, regime soldiers severely beat up Ko Lin Lin that he even lost his teeth. In Sagaing Region, U Kyaw Win Oo, 52, was arrested by regime soldiers on January 10 while he was at home. A source told Myanmar Now that he was arrested because he was seen sitting teashop with CDM workers. Their whereabout is unknown for the time being.

Yesterday, Reuters News reported that frictions emerged among ASEAN leaders for engaging with Min Aung Hlaing’s regime. We reported last week that ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ meeting was postponed to which Cambodia, the host, said it was pushed due to travel difficulties. Reuters story revealed that while Cambodia showed its favour towards Myanmar military regime and invited junta-appointed foreign minister Wunna Maung Lwin, Malaysia’s foreign minister and Singapore prime minister opposed to the idea of engaging with the regime, citing it had not showed any progress towards the five-point consensus. 

Time and again, we, the people of Myanmar, have shown the world that we are not interested in negotiating with the military regime which only knows violence, and that we are on our own in this struggle. Today, protesters from Yangon came out with a banner which read “There are no supreme saviours” borrowing lyric from the socialist anthem “The Internationale”. Protesters from Mandalay took a banner which read “We only have the people to rely on”. More protests were observed in several townships in Sagaing Region, and Hpakant Township in Kachin State. The people continue to rely on one another and defy against Min Aung Hlaing’s reign.

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