Tuesday, October 19

Militia opposed to the coup in Myanmar kills at least 13 members of the security forces | International

Several people observe columns of smoke in Hkamti, in the Burmese region of Sagaing, in an image released this Saturday on social networks.
Several people observe columns of smoke in Hkamti, in the Burmese region of Sagaing, in an image released this Saturday on social networks.NEWS AMBASSADOR / Reuters

The movement of resistance to military power intensifies and radicalizes its attack and defense tactics against the Army in Myanmar (formerly Burma). At least 13 members of the security forces died and four were captured after a rebel group stormed a police station in Mobye, a city in the east of the country, on Sunday. The event occurs when clashes increase between the so-called popular defense forces that support the clandestine civilian government – which claims to be the legitimate power of Myanmar and opposes the military regime that emerged after the coup d’état of February 1 – and the Tatmadaw (the Burmese Army), as well as between it and the guerrillas formed by ethnic minorities in various parts of the country.

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According to a member of said popular defense force quoted by the local media The Irrawaddy, the rebels set fire to the police station, and two civilians were injured during the attack. Some videos circulating on social networks, not verified so far, show the lifeless bodies of soldiers and police, dressed in uniform. In other recordings, officers appear blindfolded and their hands tied behind their backs, as if they had been taken prisoner.

The incident in Mobye, a town located about 100 kilometers east of the capital, Naypyidó, occurs when it is estimated that hundreds or thousands of Burmese, depending on the sources, have taken action and are training with minority guerrillas ethnic groups to confront the Tatmadaw, which has killed at least 815 people since the riot, according to the Myanmar Association for the Protection of Political Prisoners. In turn, the Government of National Unity – initially formed in hiding by members of the deposed civilian Executive of Aung San Suu Kyi – announced this month the creation of a “popular defense force” to serve as an umbrella for this rebel movement. become the forerunner of a future Federal Army, with the goal of replacing the Tatmadaw in its day.

It is a project that is still very much in the making, which faces numerous difficulties to get ahead, including obstacles to coordinating resistance movements that sometimes arise without great planning, as well as the challenge of obtaining the support of the twenty or so guerrillas. of ethnic minorities that have operated in the country for decades. However, many young people, the main protagonists of the street protests that have flooded Myanmar since the coup – mostly peaceful – have expressed their support for this “militarization” of the resistance after months of repression by the Tatmadaw.

Suu Kyi, in “good health”

Meanwhile, the guerrillas that for decades have been fighting to defend their autonomy in border areas of the country are increasing their combats with the Army. Several of these armed groups made up of ethnic minorities clashed with security forces this Sunday in Muse (in the northern state of Shan), along the border with China. Across the country, in a mining town bordering India, another armed group carried out an attack on Burmese security forces on Saturday.

The military junta that came to power after the coup refuses to back down despite open opposition to its mandate, pushing Myanmar into civil war. In order to stay in power, the military regime announced on Friday the dissolution of the National League for Democracy (NLD), the party of Suu Kyi, the leader. de facto of the civil government until the riot. The NLD won a resounding victory in the November elections, which the military denounced as fraudulent, their excuse for carrying out the coup.

Suu Kyi, who has since been arrested and charged with various crimes, including violating the Official Secrets law, punishable by up to 14 years in prison, is expected to appear in public for the first time Monday in a court in Naypyidó. The leader of the military junta, Min Aung Hlaing, has anticipated that the Nobel Peace Prize, 75, is “in good health”, although she has not been seen since the coup.


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