Myanmar Junta Ignores UN Envoy’s Plea and Burns Large Village

By The Irrawaddy 18 August 2022

A 600-house village was reportedly burned down by Myanmar’s regime in Yesagyo Township, Magwe Region, on Thursday after the United Nations special envoy Noeleen Heyzer demanded an end to junta attacks on civilians.

Junta leader Min Aung Hlaing on Wednesday met Heyzer, who asked him to stop aerial bombing and the burning of civilian houses.

She called for an end to all forms of violence, full respect for human rights and the rule of law and full and safe humanitarian access to those in need.

On Wednesday morning, three resistance groups ambushed around 60 regime troops and allied Pyu Saw Htee militia members near Ngatayaw village in the east of the township while troops were attempting to raid the village, according to the resistance groups.

At least eight regime troops were killed, according to Comrade Brothers, a resistance group that coordinated the attack.

An online resistance video showed the surprise attack.

After the ambush, troops allegedly raided the village and burned houses.

Nearly 4,000 villagers fled their homes while older and sick residents were left behind.

A Comrade Brothers member told The Irrawaddy: “We fear for the trapped villagers as they have probably been burned alive in their houses.”

He added that they heard regime troops firing in the village with burning continuing into Thursday.

Residents from three nearby villages have now fled their homes.

Myanmar’s junta escalated its arson attacks and indiscriminate killing of civilians since September last year when the civilian National Unity Government declared war on the regime.

By May 31, junta forces burned down approximately 18,886 civilian houses and religious buildings at 335 locations, according to the independent Data for Myanmar research group that monitors arson attacks.

Sagaing Region suffered the most with 13,840 houses torched, followed by Magwe Region with 3,055.

Junta airstrikes and arson attacks on civilian areas continued on Thursday.