Junta troops arrested more than 70 residents of Mandalay region’s Ngazun township, residents told Radio Free Asia Tuesday.
They said the locals from Tha Kyin village were rounded up in revenge for a People’s Defense Force drone attack that killed seven soldiers.
A resident, who wished to remain anonymous for fear of reprisal, said troops captured more than 50 villagers on Sunday and around 20 on Monday.
“Everyone they met on their way was grabbed and immediately drugged,” the local said.
“The women were arrested at night. Their faces were covered and their hands were tied behind their backs.
“Every man was arrested, fathers, sons and brothers.”
He said after the locals were tortured and interrogated at the village administrative office, they were taken to another village in four trucks on Monday.
Around 40 were released on Tuesday, according to a leader of the local defense force, TGYR-Youth Guerrilla Counter Revolution, who wouldn’t give his name for security reasons.
“The detainees were taken as human shields and not all were released when the troops arrived at their destination. More than 30 were still held.”
RFA’s calls to the junta’s Mandalay region spokesperson, Thein Htay, went unanswered Tuesday.
Troops have been stationed in Tha Kyin village since a junta captain was killed in a shootout with the local People’s Defence Force in February 2022.
Translated by RFA Burmese. Edited by Mike Firn and Taejun Kang.