Husband and wife arrested in Sagaing for participating in anti-junta general strike

The couple, both engineers, are taken into junta custody after their computer and mobile phone were scrutinised by the military during a raid on their residence

Two engineers in Sagaing Region’s township by the same name were recently arrested alongside a relative for participating in the general strike against military rule as part of the nationwide Civil Disobedience Movement (CDM). 

Aung San Win and Myo Su Thet, a married couple and both junior engineers in their 30s, walked out of their jobs at the road affairs department within the ministry of construction following the February 2021 military coup. They were arrested more than two years later on September 30, with a cousin during a junta raid on their home in Sein Kone ward. 

The individuals were taken into military custody after soldiers reportedly uncovered information confirming their anti-junta stance on a computer in the residence, according to local sources.

The cousin, who worked as a Japanese language tutor, was not the target of the raid, but reportedly became a person of interest to the troops when she tried to contact Aung San Win and Myo Su Thet during the search of their home. 

“While the soldiers were arresting the couple, the cousin had repeatedly called their phone, prompting the military to ask who was calling. They made the couple show the way to the cousin’s house and arrested her along with them,” said a man from Sagaing Township with knowledge of the case.

All three people were still being held at the Sagaing Central Police Station at the time of reporting, but no information was available regarding the charges against them. 

They were permitted to meet members of their family on October 5. 

The military council has not released any official information regarding their arrest. Pro-junta propaganda channels on Telegram reported that two CDM engineers in Sagaing were detained because the military found records of them discussing revolutionary groups on a mobile phone. 

The military appears to have increased its crackdown on support for the resistance in Sagaing, where the principal of a private school and the owner of a well-known local phone store were also arrested in late September.

According to the monitoring and advocacy group Assistance Association for Political Prisoners (AAPP), at the time of reporting, at least 4,100 people had been killed by the junta since the coup, and nearly 20,000 were in detention. AAPP has emphasised that these figures are only those cases which can be verified, with the actual figures likely much higher. 

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