Teenage Detainees Tortured by Junta in Upper Myanmar
By The Irrawaddy 24 February 2022
Detained teenagers in Magwe Region are being tortured during their interrogations, according to the Magwe People’s Revolution Committee (MPRC).
Around 20 youths in Magwe’s Chauk Town were detained on Monday for distributing leaflets calling for people to join the “Six Twos Revolution” general strike on the following day. The protest’s name is a reference to the date of the strike, 22.2.2022.
MPRC’s spokesman Ko Chit Win Maung said that the detainees are children aged between 15 and 16-years-old. They are basic high school students who have been participating in the anti-regime movement. About five of them are female. They were arrested separately, but the MPRC could not confirm the exact number of those detained.
“The male detainees were beaten, kicked, slapped and forced to strip off. Those who were deemed to be leaders were tortured by having their genitals burned with cigarettes,” Ko Chit Win Maung told The Irrawaddy.
The teenagers are being detained at a temporary junta base in Chauk manned by military regime soldiers from the Magwe-based 88 Division.
MPRC issued a statement on Wednesday stating that “the junta must take responsibility for the health and security of the children”, as they are peaceful protesters who were forcibly arrested.
Tuesday’s “Six Twos” strike also marked the one-year anniversary of the “Five Twos” strike last year, when millions of people took to the streets nationwide.
People across Myanmar participated in Tuesday’s strike by wearing bamboo and other hats, as well as thanaka, a traditional sun screen, and holding flowers to show their continued defiance of military rule. The protest is also being referred to as “Revolt by the Rural, Defiance by the Urban.”
The junta responded to the protests with violence.
In Monywa, the Sagaing Region capital, regime forces arrested over 30 people during a crackdown against Tuesday’s demonstration. A pregnant woman in Monywa suffered a miscarriage after the motorbike she was on was rammed by junta forces.
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