A charity clinic in Dawei, Tanintharyi Region, was raided by the military and police on Monday evening, leading to the arrest of seven volunteers at the site and the confiscation of property.
According to the Dawei Information Center Facebook page, around 30 soldiers seized an ambulance, medications and medical appliances in the 8pm assault on the clinic, located on Yae Thein St in Wea Kyun Naungyan ward.
A local close to those arrested from the organisation told Myanmar Now on Tuesday that no one had been able to contact them since they were taken in junta junta custody, and did not know where they were being held.
“I don’t know the reason as the military council hasn’t released any statement regarding the matter,” he said.
Three of the detainees were identified as Thant Zin Htoo, Hsu Yin Lae and Khin Cho Thet. The names of the remaining four had not yet been confirmed at the time of reporting.
All seven volunteers are in their 20s and had reportedly been working in the clinic throughout the Covid-19 pandemic.
“They were helping with patients who needed oxygen during the peak of the pandemic,” the local man said. “I don’t understand why they wanted to arrest such noble volunteers. They were just helping the civilians.”
Myanmar Now was not able to contact the families of the detainees, or obtain comment from junta officials on their arrest.
On January 18, three staff members from local news outlet Dawei Watch were arrested by junta forces from their homes in the township. They were released on Tuesday afternoon, according to a statement released by their employer.