Three Bodies Found Burned and Buried in Shan State

By Nang Seng Nom 18 August 2016

Burned and buried, the bodies of three villagers from Shan State’s Namtu Township who had gone missing in a forest in early August were recently recovered.

Three Kaunghong villagers—two of them members of the Shan State Progress Party/Shan State Army-North (SSPP/SSA-N)—from Namtu Township went missing on August 1 when they went into a forest to search for mushrooms.

Villagers searched for them and found their bodies on August 4 burned and buried near a site controlled by the Restoration Council of Shan State/Shan State Army-South (RCSS/SSA-S).

The RCSS said it was also investigating the murder, but the news only broke when local villagers reported it to Shan State lawmaker Nan San Huam of Namtu Township Constituency (2) last week.

“This had not previously been reported to me. Because two of the victims were SSPP members, they have been handling this themselves,” Nan Sam Huam told The Irrawaddy.

The SSPP/SSA is currently investigating the murder of two of its members, SSPP/SSA spokesperson Sai Phone Han told The Irrawaddy.

“Two were buried together and one was separate. Two were our members and we are still investigating why they were killed. So far, we have not reported anything to any [governmental] organization,” said Sai Phone Han.

There were not ongoing clashes around the time the three villagers were killed and the bodies were found about 15 miles away from Namtu Township.

Nan San Huam said Namtu lacks rule of law, citing frequent extrajudicial killings and instances of torture.

The Ta’ang National Liberation Army (TNLA), RCSS/SSA-S, SSPP/SSA-N and Burma military are all active in the area.

Translated from Burmese by Thet Ko Ko.