Villagers Missing After Myanmar Junta Arrests

By The Irrawaddy 13 December 2021

The whereabouts remain unknown of about 10 villagers arrested last week by Myanmar’s junta forces after an attack on a highway police outpost in Meiktila Township, Mandalay Region.

The arrest of the Kankaung villagers came after a bomb attack on the Yangon-Mandalay highway by Mandalay civilian defense forces on Dec. 7.

The groups claimed three police officers were killed and five others injured in the attack. The junta also reported the deaths and injuries.

On Thursday, junta forces arrested about 10 villagers from near the outpost.

Relatives said the security forces last Thursday seized the villagers, who are aged between 20 to 40. They were badly beaten before being taken away.

“We do not know where they are,” a relative said.

A resistance fighter said those arrested had no links to the attack and should be released.

“Suspects are normally taken to the 99 Regiment in Meiktila. Relatives are supposed to be allowed to see them,” he added.

The combined force said the attack on the outpost was in response to the junta’s vehicle ramming of peaceful protesters in Yangon on December 5.

Since the coup, junta forces have killed at least 1,329 civilians and detained more than 10,800 people, including students, politicians, elected leaders, activists and protesters, according to the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners, which monitors the regime.

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