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ASEAN officials to convene in Cambodia, Regime cracks down on Buddhist monks

FROM THE DVB NEWSROOM

ASEAN officials to convene in Phnom Penh for regional summit

Officials from the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) are set to meet in the Cambodian capital of Phnom Penh on Nov. 10, SCMP reports. The escalating violence in Burma will likely be at the top of the agenda at the summit. Cambodia confirmed that junta leader Min Aung Hlaing will not attend the summit. Burma’s military regime has rebuffed ASEAN’s calls for it to refrain from violence against civilians. It is unclear what further actions if any ASEAN will take against the junta. U.S. President Joe Biden is also set to travel to Cambodia from Nov. 12-13 to participate in the US-ASEAN summit as well as the East Asia Summit. 

More than 20 Buddhist monks have been arrested and imprisoned since the coup, and some of them are experiencing mental trauma due to being tortured during interrogations, according to Spring Revolution Sangha Network, an anti-coup organization founded by Buddhist monks. “Anyone who is trying to free the people from suffering will be arrested and imprisoned by the military council, and monks who stood for the path of “Dhamma” and sought to save the public from agony are also being arrested,” a monk from the network claimed.

There was a report that a monk from Bago’s Aung Yadanar monastery was detained by the Burma Army and killed after interrogation, but the network said that this has not yet been confirmed. Some of the detained monks who were released by the military council fled to Thailand or areas controlled by resistance forces. Among them was Myawaddy Mingyi Sayadaw, who passed away on Oct. 27 after being forced into exile on the Thai-Burma border. 

News by Region

KAREN—Two bomb blasts occurred in Hpa-An as regime officials visited the town on Nov. 6. The visit was to  mark the 67th anniversary of Kayin State Day on Nov. 7, The explosions occurred amidst tight security in Hpa-An. There were no reports of casualties.

RAKHINE —The director of Rakhine State’s Fisheries Department was seriously wounded after he was shot by two unidentified gunmen in a restaurant in Sittwe on Nov. 6. “The director was eating with his friends at a restaurant when two men on a motorcycle came and shot him,” a person close to the Department of Fisheries told DVB. The motive behind the attack is unknown.

SHAN—A crowd has gathered to participate in Taunggyi’s annual Tazaungdaing festival. It was reported that the junta forcibly ordered ward administration offices to create hot air balloons to represent each district. Residents feel pressured to attend events. Read more here. 

YANGON—A couple was killed in Twantay Township on Nov. 6. Their bodies were found in a Lakapone village car repair shop. “When the employees came [into work], they found the husband and wife dead with bullet wounds. The husband [was found] in the workshop. His wife was [found] in the bedroom,” a local told DVB. Three locals, including two alleged Pyu Saw Htee militia members, were killed by an unidentified armed group in Twantay Township on Nov. 5.

DVB PICKS—Human rights defender Igor Blazevic discusses the situation in Burma, and the Spring Revolution, on the Insight Myanmar Podcast. DVB Picks selects the best on Burma in English every week. Stay tuned.

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