Bodies of murdered Indaw villagers found with information from captured junta soldier

The bodies of eight villagers who were abducted by the military late last month were exhumed in Sagaing Region’s Indaw Township on Sunday after a junta soldier captured by resistance forces revealed where they were killed.

According to a spokesperson for the Indaw People’s Defence Force (PDF), the soldier, from Light Infantry Battalion 416, took part in a raid on the village of Nat Ma Hote Gyi, where the villagers were taken hostage, on November 27.

“We asked him where the eight locals that they took were, as we had lost track of them, and he told us they had been killed and were buried near the village of Kan Ni. We told residents to start looking, and then they found them,” the PDF spokesperson told Myanmar Now on Monday.

Residents of the village located the bodies in two holes, he said. Two of the victims had been decapitated, while the others had crushed skulls. All eight had their hands tied behind their backs.

The victims were identified as Thar Pyu, Kyaw Than, and Myint Phe, who were all in their 60s; Min Naing, Kyaw Htay, and Kyaw Tun, who were in their 50s; and Bo Bo Wai and Tun Naing, both in their 30s.

Nat Ma Hote Gyi is located about 5km southwest of the town of Indaw. The raid on the village reportedly came after three members of the military-backed Pyu Saw Htee militia living there informed on other residents.

All three—who were also accused of beating the eight victims before they were killed—are currently living in the police station in Indaw, according to the PDF spokesperson.

The regime forces also set fire to a house and a large barn during the raid, he added.

The junta column responsible for attacking Nat Ma Hote Gyi also carried out a series of raids on other villages in Indaw and Htigyaing townships earlier this month, he said, adding that at least 10 of its members were killed in an ambush by resistance forces on November 28.

On Monday, a combined force of Indaw PDF and Kachin Independence Army troops attacked the column again near the village of Khayan Sat Kone, according to the PDF spokesperson.

“Two of our troops were injured, but I hear that many of their men were killed,” he said.

It was also reported that Moe Hlaing Kone, another village located in the same area, had also come under attack from the military.

On November 18, some 20 junta soldiers, including an officer, were reportedly killed in a clash near the village of Na Bar, northeast of Indaw.

Four days later, the military retaliated by dropping bombs from two aircraft, according to local sources.

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