Recent junta-appointed village administrator assassinated in Mandalay Region

Locals have been fleeing their homes in Hpayar Hla in Mandalay Region’s Taungtha Township after soldiers began an occupation of the village following the Monday morning assassination of a junta-appointed local administrator. 

Myint Nwe, the 50-year-old village administrator, was killed by a shot to the head fired by an unknown gunman while he was at home, according to an eyewitness. 

“The assailant came into the house and shot him only once, right in the forehead,” the eyewitness said. 

Myanmar army soldiers arrived at the scene in eight vehicles soon after the 10am murder. They immediately started firing their weapons into the air and detonating flash grenades, according to the eyewitness.

Villagers responded by fleeing Hpayar Hla for safer locations. 

The deceased, Myint Nwe, had started serving as the village’s administrator under the coup regime just two months ago. 

Another man from Hpaya Hla alleged that Myint Nwe was known for assisting the junta in arresting other residents of the village. 

“He’s notorious around the village,” he said, adding that locals had witnessed Myint Nwe leading a group of plainclothes troops in the arrest of a villager at 5am on the same day he was killed. 

Soldiers continued to occupy Hpayar Hla through Monday evening and had been searching for the villagers who fled. 

An anti-coup resistance group, the Taungtha Guerilla Task Force, claimed responsibility for Myint Nwe’s assassination on Monday afternoon. 

Attacks by resistance groups targeting suspected military collaborators and informants have occasionally been perpetrated in Taungtha in recent months. A clerk in a general administration office under the junta and the junta-appointed administrator of Yone Si Gyi village were shot and killed in such attacks. 

In another incident, the owner of a Taungtha electronics shop was critically injured after being shot in the back and chest in mid-June after she was accused of being an informant. 

A 38-year-old Taungtha man, Myo Myint Than, died in regime custody less than 24 hours after troops arrested him as a suspect in the murder of the shop owner. 

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