Tatmadaw detains healthcare workers near Rakhine’s Ann township

The Tatmadaw is keeping a healthcare worker at an unknown location after detaining him with two of his colleagues near Ann township, Rakhine state, on Sunday.

Soldiers stopped the three men at the Tamilegon checkpoint on their way to a healthcare training course in Ann before covering their heads with cloth and driving them to an unknown interrogation site.

Nyein Lin Zaw and Min Kyaw Lin were released the next morning after being interrogated about their suspected links to the Arakan Army (AA), but Kyaw Min Tun was not allowed to go free. 

“They took Kyaw Min Tun away in a car,” Nyein Lin Zaw told Myanmar Now. “They said they found messages exchanged between Kyaw Min Tun and the AA on WeChat.” 

“I’m afraid something will happen to him. I am very worried about his safety,” he added.

Kyaw Min Tun is from Rathedaung township and has been working in Ann for more than two years. 

Brigadier General Zaw Min Tun, of the Tatmadaw’s True News Information Team, and Rakhine’s border affairs minister, Col. Min Than, did not answer phone calls seeking comment.

On August  5 the Tatmadaw detained 25-year-old Aung Thein Tun from Thonepatchaing village in Pauk Taw township, saying he had a phone containing information related to the AA.

Between July 1 and August 10, the Tatmadaw detained at least 25 people on suspicion of being strong supporters or members of the AA, or having connections to them, according to official military statements. 

Human rights groups including Amnesty International have accused the Tatmadaw of torturing people after detaining them on suspicion of links to the AA, a group they say has also committed rights abuses. 

Because the AA has been designated a terrorist organisation, Myanmar Now is unable to approach the group for comment without putting its reporters at risk of arrest. 

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