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Junta troops snatch villagers from monastery, kill 4

Junta troops arrested six civilians who were sheltering in a monastery in Myanmar’s Sagaing region and killed four of them, locals told RFA Monday.

They were among 35 people hiding there as junta troops raided Wetlet township’s Kyee Kan (north) village.

Locals said troops shelled the village at dawn on Saturday before moving in.

One man, who declined to be named for fear of reprisals, said troops released two of the six people they captured.

“Four people were killed,” he said. “Among them Shwe Man Thu, who was in her twenties, was raped and killed at a mango farm between Kyee Kan (north) village and Hla Taw village.”

RFA has been unable to independently confirm his claim.

Pro-military Telegram chat group channels said the column that raided the village killed four members of an anti-junta People’s Defense Force.

RFA’s calls to the region’s junta spokesperson, Tin Than Win, went unanswered Monday.

Displaced people on the rise

Raids on townships in Sagaing region since the Feb. 2021 coup have left more than 800,000 people homeless according to the U.N.

In Ye-U township, 100 kilometers (62 miles) north of Wetlet, more than 20,000 people are in need of emergency food and medical supplies according to the information officer from a local militia.

Htoo Khant Zaw from the People’s Defense Comrades said that’s how many people have lost their homes in the township since the coup, and are now living in makeshift tents in their villages.

“More than 20,000 people affected by the fires are facing a crisis of living and food shortages,” he said.

“Although the township humanitarian group and other social groups are helping on the ground, not everyone from the 51 villages has received enough assistance. The main need is food.”

He said 3,429 houses were destroyed by junta arson attacks, along with churches, monasteries, shops and other buildings. 

Translated by RFA Burmese. Edited by Mike Firn and Taejun Kang.