Boy, 10, among four civilians killed by soldiers in Sagaing after resistance bomb attack 

Soldiers shot and killed four civilians, including a 10-year-old boy, after their unit came under attack by explosives in Sagaing Region’s Ayadaw Township on Wednesday morning, locals have told Myanmar Now. 

Resistance fighters from the Ayadaw Revolutionary Alliance detonated the bombs near Baw Kone village, damaging a military vehicle and injuring troops. Several soldiers then raided the village and shot at people.

They killed an uncle and his two nephews, one of whom was the 10-year-old, as they were working on their farm, and also shot a man in the head while he was riding his bicycle, the local said.  

“They were digging a well and planting onions in the farm when the soldiers shot and killed them,” said the local of the three family members.

“Maybe they were killed because they didn’t answer to the military when they were asked about the perpetrators of the bomb attack, or maybe the military wanted to scare the other villagers,” he said.

The 10-year-old was identified as Phyo Wai Soe, a sixth grader. His brother, Wai Lin Aung, was 24, and their uncle, San Lin, was 30. The man killed on his bicycle was Pho Htwe, who was 60 and the father of the village’s head monk.

The soldiers also torched huts on farmland in Baw Kone and arrested three villagers, another local said. Two of those arrested, both women, were released later in the evening with bruises on their faces.  

“They said they were beaten and were told that the village would be burned to ashes if the military was attacked with explosives again,” said the second local.

The third detainee was a 20-year-old man and had not been released as of Thursday evening. 

The bodies of the uncle and his two nephews were buried at the Baw Kone village cemetery at around 5pm on Wednesday and Pho Htwe was cremated.

“They were killed because they didn’t run as they thought it had nothing to do with them. It’s really sad,” a third Ayadaw local said. “Civilians should stay away from the sites of explosive attacks and from the military and try to get up-to-date news.”

Locals say that junta troops are stationed about a mile away from Baw Kone at the Naing Gyi Aing police station and have been burning houses and robbing and killing civilians in the surrounding area, as well as using civilians as human shields. 

Junta officials did not answer calls seeking comment. 

The body of Pho Htwe, seen on January 26 (Supplied)

On Tuesday the Ayadaw Revolutionary Alliance killed four family members aged between 17 and 30 who they said had helped the military to identify areas where resistance fighters had planted explosives. 

An officer from the Ayadaw Revolutionary Alliance identified those killed as Gatone Lay, 30, Mar Mar Khine, 25, Zin Mar So, 19, and Kyaw Min Khant, 17, and said they were all residents of Kan Phyu village.

“The minefield was raided three times and several people saw them arriving together with the junta’s forces while the resistance forces were setting up explosive devices. They were only killed after such incidents took place three times,” the officer said.

Ayadaw Township is a stronghold of anti-junta activity and still sees regular protests in rural areas against the coup.

On January 17, resistance fighters attacked a military vehicle with explosives near a village in Mandalay Region. Soldiers responded by killing two civilians, including an eight-year-old child. 

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