Four injured in latest attack by Mandalay-based urban guerrillas

At least four people were injured when a bomb targeting junta-appointed officials went off in Mandalay’s Maha Aungmyay Township last Thursday, according to local sources.

The incident occurred during a meeting being held to prepare for “consultations” with residents of the township’s Maha Nwe Sin ward, a person who lives in the area told Myanmar Now.

“We heard a loud explosion and then the sound of ambulance sirens. They were planning to visit each household to talk with the public. The bomb went off while they were making preparations,” the source said.

In a statement, Myanmar’s military junta said that the casualties included Bo Bo Han, the township’s public communications officer, and Nyunt Lwin, a hundred household leader.

The location of the attack was the community hall of the ward’s Bodikone Pagoda, the statement added.

The Mandalay chapter of the anti-regime People’s Defence Force (PDF) claimed responsibility for the attack, which it said it carried out in collaboration with another resistance group called the People’s Dictatorship Revolutionary Force.

It also claimed that two soldiers may have been killed in the explosion, and that two others had been seriously injured.

Residents of several townships in Mandalay say that junta-appointed authorities have recently been ordering local civilians to attend meetings about the ongoing security crisis in the city.

At one such meeting held in Kinsanamahi, a ward in Chanayethazan Township, residents were lectured about rule of law and the danger of associating with “terrorist organisations,” a resident who attended the gathering told Myanmar Now.

The meetings are just the latest measure taken by the regime to try to address the efforts of Mandalay-based urban guerrilla groups to undermine its rule.

Since July, the junta has arrested at least 40 suspected members  of these groups, but has yet to stop attacks on its officials or suspected informants.

Last month, four people were shot dead and a number of others were injured in a series of incidents in the city.

On August 1, three bomb blasts in Chanmyathazi and Pyigyidagun townships injured a 100-household leader and three junta privates, according to sources.

Three weeks later, two people were killed and two others were injured in three separate incidents that occurred in and around Mandalay on a single day.

The first victim was 50-year-old Soe Hnin, an alleged junta collaborator who was shot dead on 134th Street in Pyigyidagun Township at around 7am on August 22.

Later the same day, several blasts caused by handmade explosives injured two workers at a distribution centre operated by Myanmar Beer, a military-owned brewery, in Chanmyathazi Township.

The third incident occurred in Patheingyi Township, which lies just east of Mandalay’s urban area, where a municipal worker named Aung Kyaw San was shot and killed by unknown assailants.

The next day, a married couple was killed while stopped on their motorcycle at an intersection in downtown Mandalay’s Chanayethazan Township.

The victims, 42-year-old Sithu Ko Ko and his wife Hnin Wai Wai Hlaing, 38, were shot four times after dropping their daughter off at school. 

Tiger Force Mandalay, the group that claimed responsibility for the shooting, later acknowledged that the couple had been mistaken for their intended target and issued an apology.

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