One man killed, residents flee as junta troops storm Sagaing Region village

Myanmar junta soldiers killed one civilian and allegedly burned down houses during a raid on a village in Sagaing Region’s Taze Township on Thursday, according to locals who were among those displaced in the assault.

Nearly 100 soldiers stormed the village of Kar Paung Kya in six trucks at 2am, a resident said. He told Myanmar Now that the troops shot a man who came out of his house to see what was happening, and arrested another while the rest of the villagers fled to the nearby forest.

The deceased was identified as 25-year-old Lwin Moe. 

Hein Zar, 30, was the man reportedly taken into junta custody. 

After the raid, the soldiers occupied the 800-household village, the local source added.

At around 10pm on Thursday, he told Myanmar Now that the troops torched several houses in Kar Paung Kya and fired both light weapons and heavy artillery into the areas where residents were hiding.

“Before they fired the artillery, we also heard gunfire. We were unable to go and see what was happening,” he said. 

Another villager said that “only buffaloes, cows and pigs are left in the village.” 

On Friday morning, soldiers reportedly destroyed more houses, according to a third local. Because he was unable to return to the area at the time of reporting, he could not provide further information about how many or which homes were targeted.  

At the time of reporting, Myanmar Now had not yet obtained photographs of Kar Paung Kya to assess the extent of the damage. 

Villagers speculated that the raid was triggered by the murder last week of two men from Kar Paung Kya who were accused of being military informants. Myanmar Now was unable to independently verify the villagers’ claim that the men had been killed.

Thursday’s raid was the second on Kar Paung Kya in recent months. In May, residents of the village also had to flee a military assault.  

In mid-June, two former village administrators from the villages of Daunggyi and Ywar Mon Taung, also in Taze Township, were assassinated after being accused of having military ties and supporting the coup regime. 

Just days after the February 1 coup, Taze became a stronghold for anti-dictatorship protests. On April 7, junta troops killed 10 locals in an attempt to suppress the resistance in the area.

Protests in the town grew quieter after the crackdown, but momentum against the coup grew in villages and rural areas. 

Neither the military’s spokespersons nor officers at the Taze police station could be reached for comment.

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