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Civilians killed in airstrike on China-Burma border; Belt and Road Initiative assists military crimes

FROM THE DVB NEWSROOM

Civilians killed in airstrike on China-Burma border

Twenty-nine people, including 11 children under the age of 16 were killed and 57 others injured, in an airstrike on an Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) camp in Munglai Hkyet near the Kachin Independence Army (KIO/KIA) headquarters of Laiza, located along the China border, on Oct. 9. 

“The ground was shaking and window glass was broken because of the explosion. It was at the IDP camp and many people were killed and injured. The hospital was packed with injured people the next morning,” said a Munglai Hkyet resident. Read more here.

Belt and Road Initiative assisting military crimes

The Kachin Women’s Association Thailand (KWAT) states that abuses committed by the military in Kachin and Shan states were concentrated around vital transport routes for China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). It claimed that there was an increase of nearly 200 in the number of casualties from aerial bombardments since May 2022. 

The KWAT outlined 61 civilian casualties from artillery attacks and 221 villagers forced to work as human shields for the military. It called on China to halt its projects in Burma. “China is taking a huge risk by pushing ahead with BRI projects in partnership with the military regime,” said Ja Ing, a spokesperson of KWAT. 

Burma national flees Thailand after employer killed

A Burma national wanted for the murder of a former Thai ambassador fled into Burma, the Bangkok Post reported. Former ambassador Vichit Vichitmarn’s body was found at his home in Bangkok on Oct. 8. 

The suspect, Sai Myat Moe, had worked for Vichit Vichitmarn as a house painter. He is alleged to have killed him before stealing his valuables, then caught a bus to Chiang Rai province before crossing into Burma through the Mae Sai-Tachilek border on Sept. 29.

News by Region

Rescue workers in Kyaikto (Credit: Myanmar Fire Services Department)

MON—Around 800 Kyaikto residents have been evacuated from their homes due to floods since Oct. 5. ‘The heavy rain from the forest and mountain areas also affected the town. The situation is likely to worsen,’ a volunteer assisting flood victims told DVB. 

The town’s residents are currently seeking shelter in three nearby monasteries. ‘While the area has experienced flooding before, we have never encountered such severe flooding,” said a Kyaikto resident.

BAGO—Over 40,000 Bago residents have been relocated due to flooding since Oct. 7. There are now 30 relief camps to accommodate those evacuated from their homes. Social aid groups from across Burma have mobilized to provide aid as Bago experiences its worst flooding in 60 years.

“We need to rescue those in poor health, and all the existing relief centers are now at full capacity. We require motorboats due to the current situation,” said a rescue worker.

KARENNI—An eight-year-old boy was killed by an artillery shell in Hpruso Township on Oct. 7. Eight homes were also damaged in the Burma Army attack. 

“The location where the heavy shell struck is fairly far from the site of the initial conflict. Another shell landed nearby as locals gathered for the child’s funeral, prompting them to postpone the proceedings,” said Ko Banyar, the spokesperson of the Karenni Human Rights group. 

MANDALAY—Five members of the military-proxy Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP) were killed on Oct. 2, Myanmar Now reported, Four of them were killed in Natogyi Township while the fifth was killed in Myingyan Township. A spokesperson of a local resistance group confirmed the deaths but said the perpetrators remain unknown and denied responsibility for the killings. 

“These people provided information to the authorities regarding the activities of resistance fighters—their role was to inform the military council about those supporting or participating in the revolution, which led to activists being beaten or arrested,” the spokesperson told Myanmar Now. Neither the regime nor the USDP have responded to the murders. 

YANGON—The body of a gold shop owner was found handcuffed at Htauk Kyant junction, Mingaladon Township on Oct. 10. Min Zaw Oo and his son were stopped by an unidentified group on the way home from their gold shop in Kyimyindaing market on Oct. 9. 

“They beat and arrested him. At first, his family members checked at the Kyimyindaing police station as they heard the group was from the station. But the police refused. His abandoned body was discovered the next morning,” said a Kyimyindaing resident. Min Zaw Oo’s death is under investigation. 

Watch our latest: Moe Myint’s mother attends her funeral in Thailand. DVB English News is on X, FB, IG, Threads, TikTok & YouTube.

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