Junta raids kill 2, force 5,000 to flee Sagaing region villages

By RFA Burmese

Two people have been killed and around 5,000 have abandoned their homes as junta troops raided two villages in Tigyaing township, in Myanmar's northern Sagaing region, residents told RFA.

Locals said that a junta column with more than 70 troops fired heavy artillery and entered Nyaung Pin Thar village on March 30. A 20-year-old woman named Zar Chi Win was killed by a shell.

“Zar Chi Win was hit by the junta’s heavy artillery shell and died on March 30, while she was trying to escape,” said a resident, speaking on condition of anonymity for safety reasons.

“The shell landed in the vicinity of Nyaung Pin Thar village.”

Another column with more than 70 troops raided nearby Sit Tan village killing 30-year-old Than Pe Lay as he tried to escape, the local told RFA.

“Than Pe Lay was shot dead by a column that entered Sit Tan village on April 2, while he was trying to escape near the village monastery,” he said.

On the evening of April 3, the column that entered Nyaung Pin Thar village and the column that entered Sit Tan village combined and left the township.

Calls to the military junta spokesman for Sagaing region, Aye Hlaing, went unanswered.

According to the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners, between Feb. 1, 2021, when the military seized power in a coup, and April 3, 2023, a total of 3,206 people, including pro-democracy activists, were killed by the junta.

Translated by RFA Burmese. Edited by Mike Firn.