An unknown attacker shot and killed a local National League for Democracy (NLD) official in Yangon on Wednesday morning and injured a bystander.
Khin Nay Myo, the vice chair of the NLD office in Ward 9, Lanmadaw Township, was talking with three of her friends in front of a rice shop at the Zaw Gyi market at around 5am when the killer pulled up in a car.
“He got out of the car, took the gun from his pocket, got close to her and shot her,” said one of the friends. “I think this was a planned attack.”
“The assailant waited until the shop was open and he only got close to us subtly when we were talking. I think he had been watching us for a while,” she added.
The gunman fired three shots, one of which hit the ankle of a woman who was selling paratha bread nearby, residents of the area said, adding that the woman was receiving medical treatment.
The friend who saw the killing said that people yelled for help but no one came, even though there was a police residential building nearby. Khin Nay Myo, who was 48, died on her way to the hospital in an ambulance provided by a neighbourhood charity group.
A police vehicle arrived at the scene when they were preparing to put her in the ambulance, the friend said.
The junta has targeted NLD officials and members across the country in recent months with killings, torture and arrests.
It has also enlisted the help of supporters from among the civilian population to threaten and attack its opponents, forming the Pyu Saw Htee group in the wake of the February coup.
There have been scores of similar street killings across Myanmar in recent months, but most have been carried out by guerrilla groups against local junta officials and military informants.