Two female resistance fighters choose suicide over arrest by Myanmar junta in Sagaing

Two members of the Kawlin chapter of the People’s Defence Force (PDF) were killed when they intentionally detonated explosives on Saturday morning after being confronted by Myanmar army troops seeking to detain them in the Sagaing Region township. 

The resistance fighters—both women—were travelling by motorbike and attempting to plant the explosives ahead of an advancing 100-soldier junta unit that had just departed the village of War Yon Khon when they instead were intercepted by the column.

Kawlin PDF member Su Su Yi, who died on January 7 (Kawlin Revolution / Facebook)

Su Su Yi, 45, and Hnin Si Hlaing, 20, set off the explosive devices using a remote control and were killed immediately by the blast, a frontline member of the Kawlin PDF told Myanmar Now. 

“They met head-to-head with the ‘dogs’ and knew they were going to be captured,” the PDF member said, referring to the junta troops. “The younger one pressed the button and set off the mines in an impromptu suicide bombing.” 

The women’s bodies were taken from the scene by the Myanmar military, a Kawlin-based source said. 

“The mines did not explode [accidentally] while they were riding the motorcycle. There are eyewitnesses who saw them being stopped by the junta troops,” the individual told Myanmar Now. “I am sure that they intentionally set off the mines because they knew they couldn’t escape.”

Su Su Lwin’s Kawlin Township home was reportedly sealed off and destroyed by regime troops the next day.

The column in question previously carried out an arson attack on the village of Myaung Gyi on January 6, burning around 10 homes. 

On New Year’s Day, the Kawlin PDF fired 40mm grenades at the town’s junta-controlled general administration office and used explosives to ambush a military column patrolling the area.

A combined force made up of members of the Kachin Independence Army and local resistance forces including the Kawlin PDF have been repeatedly clashing with regime troops in upper Sagaing Region townships that border Kachin State, including  Kawlin, Katha, Indaw and Htigyaing. 

Sagaing has been at the forefront of the armed resistance struggle in Myanmar since the military ousted the elected civilian government in a coup in February 2021. 

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