Sixty Young Children Trapped in Myanmar Junta Raid

By The Irrawaddy 2 August 2022

Sixty young children were trapped in their school when Myanmar junta helicopters attacked a village in Myinmu Township, Sagaing Region, on Monday.

Troops arrived in two helicopters at Latpankyin village in the north of the township while two Russian-made MI-35 helicopters attacked the village, although there had been no fighting with anti-regime forces, according to a resistance group.

A villager was shot dead and another injured while they were farming outside the village, Ko Nway Oo, a leader of the Civil Defense and Security Organization of Myaung, who witnessed the junta raid, told The Irrawaddy on Tuesday.

The dead villager’s body was left behind by fleeing villagers but the injured woman was evacuated.

Around 100 villagers were reportedly detained while around 60 pupils were trapped in the school run by the civilian National Unity Government.

The helicopters also attacked a neighboring village, said Ko Nway O, who witnessed the airstrikes.

Pro-regime Telegram channel Fifty Two News reported on Tuesday that regime troops killed five people’s defense force (PDF) members and seize many improvised firearms, ammunition and equipment, six vehicles and 30 motorbikes during a raid on a camp in the village.

However, Ko Nway Oo said none of his comrades in the village were killed. He said those killed must be villagers.

On Tuesday morning, the same troops burned betel farms outside the village while shelling neighboring villages. The conditions of detained Latpankyin villagers and children are unknown until Tuesday.

Large numbers of troops are deployed at the entrances to Myimu town.

Last Wednesday the regime raided and burned down a PDF camp in Myinmu Township using five helicopters, including two MI-35s.

Following the raid, troops killed four civilians after occupying a nearby village.

Amid daily attacks from PDFs and ethnic armed organizations, junta forces have relentlessly committed atrocities and arbitrary killings, burned people alive, used civilians as human shields, conducted airstrikes and shelled residential areas, looted and burned houses and committed acts of sexual violence.