Military cracked down Myitkyina protesters

Seng Htoi Zin / February 15, 2021

Myitkyina protesters standoff / Khun Rein

A combine unit of military and police dispersed the hundred of demonstrators last night by using water cannon, tear gas and bullets in the Kachin State capital Myitkyina, detaining some journalists while they were reporting live.

Five journalists were arrested during the crackdown, said Zaw Ring Hpra from Myitkyina based 74 Media. He said that two of them were from 74 Media including the Chief Editor Htoi Awng and a reporter Naw Seng. Mizzima’s photo journalist Seng Lat Aung and, the two journalists; Yang Kawng and Wai Yan from EPN News were also detained, Zaw Ring confirmed.

The crackdown broke out last night around 8 pm at the Buga company owned power controlled station in Manhkring Quarter, while several hundreds of local protesters were trying to protect the power station from taking control by the authorities. According the local sources, the authorities intended to cut off the electricity in order to conduct the illegal arrest on protesters at night.

A male protester was seriously injured because of the gun shots, a local witness Seng Ja Brim told The Kachin Post. I was so scared because, it happened nearby my house, she said. Almost a hundred rounds of gun shot were heard by nearby residents.

Similar demonstration happened a night before at Yangyi Aung Quarter in town, while a military unit was stationing inside the power controlled station and they were trying to cut off the electricity. Hundreds of demonstrators gathered around the power station and demanded the army unit to leave. The standoff concluded after the army unit left due to the successful negotiation made by the Peace Creation Group (PCG).

Since February 8th, the over hundred thousands of Myitkyina residents stages daily demonstration against the military coup led by Gen. Min Aung Hlaing, demanding the release of all detained politicians and to rebuild the democratic Federal Union of Burma.