Civilians Seized After Myanmar Junta ‘Finds’ Rockets in Mandalay 

By The Irrawaddy 10 May 2022

Myanmars military regime has detained nine civilians, including a 15-year-old, in connection with rockets found near an Aungmyaythazan Township moat in Mandalay.

Two 107mm rockets were discovered by a police inspector on Saturday morning, according to the regime. 

Nine people, including a teashop owner and his staff and a family from Dawna Bwar ward, were detained on Saturday evening, according to a resident.

Junta personnel, some in plainclothes, arrested them in the evening. The owner of Café Pan Khin teashop and his three employees, U Han Tin and his three family members and a woman called Myat Thandar Kyaw were arrested,” he said.

Buddhist monk U Aggawunsa, an organizer of anti-regime protests in Pyigyitagun, said: From the very beginning, the regime always made arrests as it pleases. It has knowingly detained people who have nothing to do with those rockets. It is wicked and inhumane to scare other civilians.”

Police have opened a case against Ma Myat Thandar Kyaw, 23, under Article 50(j) of the Counterterrorism Law.  

Two rockets found near Mandalay’s moat.

Modeled on Qassam rockets developed by Hamas, the rockets used by some ethnic armed organizations and peoples defense forces are made of common metal pipes filled with explosives and propellants and usually ignited by a battery.

The large moat is close to junta security outposts and regular patrol routes. Anti-regime forces said resistance fighters could not fire rockets from where the regime claims they were found. 

Bo Naung Lay for resistance group Black Death said: The resistance forces are not foolish enough to fire those rockets in public places. They take time to fire. We think the regime made it up and blamed the guerillas. Resistance groups claim responsibility for every mission we make. But no group claimed responsibility for this.”

U Aggawunsa said: It is impossible to leave these rockets in public places. The regime used rockets as an excuse to arrest those nine people.”

The regime has searching Mandalay regime opponents, resistance fighters, National League for Democracy members and supporters, and activists, according to anti-regime forces. The regime has imposed a news blackout on its arrests.

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