Deadly unrest reported in Myanmar after opposition urges ‘defensive war’

FILE PHOTO: A Myanmar soldier stands guard near the Congress compound in Naipitaw, Myanmar
FILE PHOTO: A Myanmar soldier stands guard near the Congress compound in Naipitaw, Myanmar, February 2, 2021. Reuters / Stringer

September 10, 2021

(Reuters) – At least 20 people have been killed in fighting between militias and Myanmar’s ruling military, a witness and local media said on Friday, in the worst-ever violence since the junta’s opponents described this week as “the defense of the people”. called for war”.

The National Unity Government (NUG), formed to oppose the army’s February 1 takeover, called on Tuesday for a revolt against military rule, in an apparent attempt to coordinate the military’s fighting groups and convince the troops and the state https: // Officials to switch sides.

Myanmar has been in turmoil since the overthrow of Aung San Suu Kyi’s government, which ended a decade of provisional democracy and sparked nationwide anger, strikes and protests, and militia groups attacking security forces. I saw the rise.

According to media and an eyewitness, fighting between military and defense volunteers affiliated with the Ekta government in Mayin Thar village since Thursday resulted in casualties between local militia and villagers, as soldiers used heavy artillery.

A 42-year-old resident said, “They fired from artillery, burnt houses in our village.”

“I have lost what I have… I will not forgive them until the end of the world,” he told Reuters over the phone.

BBC Burmese said 10 people were killed in Myin Thar in the Magwe region of central Myanmar, while the Irrawaddy news website reported 17 casualties, including minors.

According to the Irrawaddy, military spokesman Jo Min Tun has confirmed that the fighting took place in Magway. The spokesperson did not respond to calls from Reuters seeking comment.

Myanmar’s neighbors urged all sides to exercise restraint following Tuesday’s call for a nationwide retaliation by the shadow government Some analysts have warned that the move could backfire and complicate the opposition’s efforts to garner international support.

The Irrawaddy also reported the death of three soldiers in the largest city of Yangon on Thursday.

News reports said clashes broke out on Thursday in Thantlang in Chin state bordering India and continued till late Friday night.

Radio Free Asia and the Mizzima news service said the military carried out airstrikes. There were no immediate reports of casualties.

The NUG Defense Minister did not immediately respond to requests for confirmation of events on Thursday and Friday.

Reuters could not confirm reports of clashes, which the state-run MRTV did not mention in its nightly news bulletin.

The military maintains tight control over information and its media outlets have been selective in reporting the unrest.

(Reporting by Reuters Staff; Writing by Martin Petty; Editing by William McLean)


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