Myanmar Junta Burns Magwe Villages

By The Irrawaddy 16 May 2022

At least 10 villages in Yesagyo Township, Magwe Region, were torched by around 100 regime troops within a week following clashes with resistance forces.

Myanmar’s regime first attacked Myaung Township in Sagaing Region and then moved across the regional border to Yesagyo.

Other troops came by motorboat from Myingyan Township in Mandalay Region, according to Yesagyo People’s Defence Force (PDF).

Since last Tuesday, regime troops have burned houses in Mi Pa Yar, Mee Laung Kyaun, Hpyonbu, Kan Oo, Kyine, Min, Mae Kone, Na Ta Yaw, Moe Gwal and Myay Swan villages, according to resistance forces.

“One village after another was set on fire. They torched at least five houses in each village and sometimes the whole village,” said a Yesagyo PDF representative.

On Monday, junta artillery was fired at Moe Gwal and Kan Oo villages, which were later burned down, according to Yay Lae Kyaun PDF.

In April regime troops destroyed at least 27 villages in the Yay Lae Kyaun area, burning around 84 houses and killing at least six civilians. 

It is the second time some of the villages have been set on fire after similar attacks last month and thousands of villagers have fled the area. 

A Hpyonbu villager said: “We flee when they arrive and try to extinguish the fires after they leave.”

Some civilians are hiding in the forests and lack water and food, he said.

Two Yay Lae Kyaun PDF members were killed earlier this month. 

Magwe Region is an anti-regime stronghold and the junta has launched a major offensive but it does not control large areas of the region. 

Yesagyo residents have held regular protests against military rule since last year’s coup.

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