Election 2020

NLD File Charges Against USDP After Campaign Clashes in Myanmar’s Ayeyarwady Region

By Salai Thant Zin 15 October 2020

Pathein, Ayeyarwady Region — A National League for Democracy (NLD) member in Ayeyarwady Region’s Hinthada Township has filed a complaint against 26 supporters of the Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP) for attacking NLD rivals on Saturday.

Thousands of supporters of the military’s proxy USDP held a rally in Hinthada on Saturday near Tagwa village, hitting villagers wearing NLD shirts, throwing rocks at houses with NLD flags and cars and motorbikes with NLD logos. Fourteen villagers were injured, according to the township’s NLD branch.

Hinthada NLD member Ko Aung Sithu filed a complaint with the police against 26 USDP supporters on Monday.

Hinthada police chief Major Khin Maung Kyi said: “We have accepted the complaint and are conducting an investigation.”

The police have opened a case against 26 suspects under the Penal Code for causing injury, swearing, threatening, damage and aiding and abetting.

Ko Aung Sithu said: “There were over 3,000 USDP supporters and around 500 of them beat villagers and threw rocks. Based on photos, video and eyewitness accounts, we opened a case against them. We are still identifying others who participated.”

The USDP’s Hinthada office claimed the NLD supporters attacked first.

“We drove through nearly 100 villages on the campaign trail that day and there was no problem. But Tagwa villagers stopped the motorcade. Some of them kicked the drivers and later threw rocks. Our campaigners threw stones back,” said the USDP’s spokesman in Hinthada, U Htay Win.

The USDP supporters plan to file a lawsuit against NLD supporters in Tagwa, he said.

The NLD and USDP have been staging large rallies across Ayeyarwady Region ahead of the Nov. 8 general election.

Translated from Burmese by Thet Ko Ko

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