Pro-Regime Militia Blamed as Another Member of Myanmar’s NLD Killed

By The Irrawaddy 15 July 2022

The killing spree targeting National League for Democracy (NLD) members continues with an executive of the party’s branch in Kantbalu Township, Sagaing Region being killed on July 8.

U Kyaw Myint was reportedly abducted and killed by pro-junta Pyu Saw Htee militia members who accused him of acting as an informant in the arrest by the local People’s Defense Force earlier this month of three men including a son of the Tawkashat Village Pyu Saw Htee leader. U Kyaw Myint’s body was not returned to the family, but cremated on the orders of the regime.

“Though U Kyaw Myint was an NLD executive, he steered clear of political issues after the military coup. He was intentionally killed. Pyu Saw Htee militias have a strong presence in Tawkashat thanks to a nationalist monk called U Wasawa,” a resident said.

U Wasawa is a member of a nationalist Buddhist monk organization known by its Burmese acronym Ma Ba Tha.

NLD Kantbalu Township executive U Kyaw Myint

Local free funeral service providers said they helped cremate U Kyaw Myint’s body after taking it from the mortuary of the Kantbalu Township Hospital on July 9.

The regime and its affiliates have been killing NLD lawmakers, executives, members and supporters since the coup. Three NLD members—lawmaker U Kyaw Myo Min from Mon State’s Bilin Township, and party members U Pann Myint and U Ko Ko Maung—were killed by the regime in June.

A spokesman for the NLD said: “The chairman of the State Administration Council [the Myanmar regime’s governing body] has detained, tortured and killed with hard feelings politicians, activists, defenders of democracy and human rights, and professional journalists. It is very saddening. He fears that he might lose, and he is doing everything he can think of out of desperation.”

Some 917 NLD members including lawmakers have been detained since the coup, and 216 have been released. A total of 18 including a lawmaker have died due to torture during interrogation and lack of proper medical treatment in prison, according to the NLD.

According to the NLD’s Human Rights Documentation Team, from the day of the coup on Feb. 1 2021 to July 1 this year there were 106 attacks on party offices including its headquarters, and the houses and property of 224 party members including 119 lawmakers were sealed off.

The team said five party members and seven party supporters were killed and their bodies dumped by roadsides as of May 5 by pro-junta vigilante groups including Thwe Thout, Sun Ye, the Nationalist Coalition and the Nationalist Alliance.

The terror group Thwe Thout announced on April 21 that, to counter resistance attacks on junta targets, it was launching “Operation Red” against members and supporters of the NLD, their families, and supporters of the anti-regime People’s Defense Force (PDF).

Local sources in Mandalay said that at least 20 NLD supporters have been killed in Mandalay Region since Thwe Thout launched its operation.