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Troops kill 2 locals and militia member in Myanmar’s Sagaing region

This story contains graphic and disturbing descriptions of killing.

Junta troops killed a People’s Defense Force member and two civilians in Sagaing region’s Pale township this week, Pale People’s Administration Group told Radio Free Asia on Thursday.

Residents of Nyaung Kone village fled ahead of a morning raid by around 80 soldiers on Tuesday.

When some returned later in the day, troops arrested and killed three of them, according to the administration group’s Kyaw Soe Win.

“[Some locals] were watching to see if the junta troops would leave the village. They entered the village to have a look,” he said.

 “When we entered the village on Wednesday morning, we saw some locals and a People’s Defense Force soldier had been brutally killed. Their hands were cut off and they were beheaded.”

Kyaw Soe Win said three People’s Defense Force members managed to escape but were hit and injured by artillery fragments.

Pro-junta Telegram messaging channels said three defense force soldiers were killed.

The junta spokesperson for Sagaing, Sai Naing Naing Kyaw, told RFA he was not aware of the incident.

It’s not known if the latest raid was carried out by the junta’s notorious Ogre Column although the method of killing was similar to their tactics.

In March and April this year, Ogre Column troops raided Sagaing, Ye-U, Khin-U, Myinmu, Taze and Myaung townships in Sagaing region, cutting off limbs and beheading people they captured.

More than 800,000 people have been forced to abandon their homes in Sagaing region to escape the fighting, according to the United Nations.

Translated by RFA Burmese. Edited by Mike Firn and Elaine Chan.