Chair of pro-military political party in Kayah State stabbed to death

Four unidentified men stabbed and killed the chair of the junta-allied National Democratic Force’s (NDF) Kayah (Karenni) State chapter at his home in the capital of Loikaw on Friday.

Seventy-year-old Han Thar died on the spot after being stabbed three times in the neck and once in the chest, according to a member of a local charity team that helped his family bring his body to the Loikaw public hospital.

According to a woman who lives in the same neighbourhood, the men who stabbed Han Thar came to his home—where he ran a small electronics shop—looking to repair a television set.  

“There were police in front of his house and I saw blood on the ground,” she told Myanmar Now on Friday.

Han Thar ran as an NDF regional candidate for Loikaw Constituency (1) in the 2020 general election but lost. 

The motive behind the murder was not known at the time of reporting, and the perpetrators were still at large. His death is believed to be the latest in a series of killings and bomb attacks in recent months that target military authorities and those perceived to be their collaborators. 

In early July, a Loikaw man named Myint Thein was accused of being a military ally and was also shot dead.

Following the February 1 coup, NDF leader Khin Maung Swe was appointed as a civilian member of the junta’s council.

The NDF was founded before the 2010 election by the National League for Democracy (NLD) breakaway politicians including Khin Maung Swe. 

Before last year’s election, Khin Maung Swe was among the leaders of 34 political parties allied with the military-backed Union Solidarity and Development Party who met with army chief Min Aung Hlaing. 

During that meeting, Min Aung Hlaing said there was “nothing [he] dared not to do” when asked by party leaders for assistance in the event of electoral fraud. 

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