Burma

Myanmar Junta Accuses NLD Lawmakers of Organizing Armed Resistance

By The Irrawaddy 14 June 2021

Myanmar’s military regime has accused elected lawmakers from the National League for Democracy (NLD) party of being involved in recent bomb explosions, shootings and the organizing of military training for pro-democracy supporters.

The June 14 issues of junta-controlled newspapers accused two NLD lawmakers, U Yee Mon and U Thein Naing, of playing a major role in organizing military training for youths in areas controlled by the Karen National Union, a powerful ethnic organization and armed group based in Karen State.

U Yee Mon is the Defense Minister of the National Unity Government (NUG), a parallel government to the regime, and was an elected lawmaker at the 2020 general election, while U Thein Naing, is a former Yangon Region Parliament lawmaker from South Dagon Township,

The regime also accused NLD lawmakers in Sagaing Region of being involved in arms procurement and organizing military training in Laiza, Kachin State, the headquarters of the ethnic armed organization the Kachin Independence Army (KIA).

Junta media also claimed that some NLD lawmakers funded bombings targeting schools, as well as organizing and funding military training and attending the graduation ceremonies of people who have completed military training in areas controlled by ethnic armed groups.

On May 24 and 25, the regime reportedly seized a haul of weapons in Mandalay Region’s Chanmyathazi and Pyigyitagun townships, and accused former Chin State municipal affairs chief Salai Issac Khin of being the head of the western military region of the NUG and of being connected to the seized weapons. The regime also accused him of providing 500,000 Indian rupiahs [around five million kyats] in funding to the Tamu people’s defense force (PDF) in Sagaing Region.

“I am not the military region head. They just attempt to label me and set me up. I am not a lawmaker. I don’t know the people who the regime said they had arrested [along with the seized weapons]. Perhaps they were forced to confess that I was involved. I am just helping displaced people,” said Salai Issac Khin.

The May 29 and June 4 issues of the junta-controlled media claimed also that Yangon Region Parliament lawmakers from South Dagon Township were involved in organizing military training for young pro-democracy supporters.

“I don’t know the names in the news reports about the school explosions, let alone ever meeting those people in person,” one of the lawmakers, U Nyi Nyi, wrote on his Facebook.

NLD lawmakers from Bago, Mandalay, Tanintharyi and Sagaing regions have also been accused of organizing military training in KIA-controlled areas.

Junta security forces have arrested a number of NLD leaders and lawmakers elected in the 2020 general election since the Feb. 1 coup, and the regime is attempting to dissolve the party.

State-run newspapers also said in their June 11 issues that the regime has arrested 49 people for committing arson, 61 people for committing murder, 256 people for illegal possession of arms, and 272 people for bombings, along with confiscating 50 small arms, 2,502 rounds of ammunition, 914 hand-made guns, 5,947 homemade bombs and related materials.

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