Local PDFs said the military called in air strikes and torched villages during two weeks of clashes; the regime also suffered at least 40 casualties, the groups said.
The deaths and several injuries occurred when regime artillery shells hit a village in Rakhine State’s Mrauk-U Township after AA fighters ambushed junta troops.
Brig-Gen Tin Soe, who was trained at Japan’s Ground Self Defense Force Staff College, was involved in the burning alive of 35 civilians in Kayah State, HRW said.
The rights group said regime troops are laying mines in and around villages, resulting in civilian deaths and injuries.
Images and video from Sagaing offer proof that atrocities are being committed against civilians by the Tatmadaw—and that these armed thugs aren’t worthy of the name.
There has been no contact with the group, including a child, since soldiers raided their villages in Sagaing on Tuesday; locals fear they will be used as human shields.
Junta media say some of the recent killings in the resistance stronghold were of suspected informers, but PDF groups say this is fake news aimed at discrediting them.
The regime has targeted properties mainly owned by elected NLD lawmakers, celebrities, journalists, striking civil servants and others active in the anti-regime movement.
IDPs in Kayah State are now afraid to use blue tarpaulins for shelter because junta pilots are targeting them, an aid worker said.
Many in Myanmar feel solidarity with Ukrainians’ fight to repel Vladimir Putin’s military aggression, and see a common enemy in Russia, a strong supporter of the junta.
The owner and driver of a vehicle carrying wounded junta soldiers were killed when AA troops reportedly attacked it.
PDF groups and ethnic armies fought with and ambushed junta troops and pro-regime militias in six states and regions.
The junta’s forces ‘can no longer win on the ground,’ says Burmese-American scholar and former US Army lieutenant colonel Dr. Miemie Winn Byrd.
Her sister, 18, and a man in his 50s were also killed as the regime continued its indiscriminate air and ground attacks in Kayah State.
Some 5,000 villagers have crossed the border and about 10,000 are displaced in the area as the regime intensifies its offensives near the Thai border in Karen State.