၂၀၁၅ ေရြးေကာက္ပြဲ Irrawaddy.org
CAMPAIGN TRAIL

NLD Campaigner Assaulted in Irrawaddy Delta

A campaigner for Burma’s main opposition party is violently assaulted by a ruling party counterpart as campaign tensions reach a boiling point.


RANGOON — A campaigner for Burma’s main opposition party was violently assaulted by a ruling party counterpart this week in Irrawaddy Division, as campaign tensions reached a boiling point just weeks before a Nov. 8 general election.

Thant Zin Latt, a campaign manager for the National League for democracy (NLD) in Maubin Township, was campaigning in the township’s Yaylae village on Wednesday when a local campaign manager for the Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP) came at him with a bamboo stick, police confirmed.

Aung Kyaw Kyaw, an officer in Shwe Taung Paw village, told The Irrawaddy on Friday that the assailant, a former village administrator named Sein Hlaing, will be charged under article 325 of Burma’s Penal Code, a provision related voluntarily causing grievous harm.

An officer in Maubin said Sein Hlaing was not yet in custody, declining to provide any further comment on the case.

Both men involved in the skirmish, Thant Zin Latt and Sein Hlaing, were unreachable on Friday.

Sein Win, an NLD candidate for the Lower House of Parliament in Maubin, said his campaign manager had suffered a hand injury but it was not serious and he should be fully recovered soon.

This week’s assault was the latest in a mounting body of complaints by the party since the official campaign period began on Sept 8. Speaking to The Irrawaddy in the wake of the incident, NLD central committee member Win Htein said the party’s campaign has suffered a number of setbacks including edicts from local authorities, vandalism of party signboards and restricted access to venues.

None of the more than 50 complaints submitted by the party about pre-election misconduct have yet been resolved by local authorities or election sub-commission dispute resolution bodies.

The exact cause of Wednesday’s dispute is still unclear, though tensions between the two parties have simmered in recent weeks following accusations by the NLD that a Buddhist nationalist group known as Ma Ba Tha, or the Association for the Protection of Race and Religion, had been ratcheting up support for the USDP and portraying the opposition as partial to the Muslim community.