|Narinjara office is searched by plain cloth police in Sittway|
Sittway. March 31, 2020
Ten plain cloth police come to Narinjara news office in Rakhine State capital and search the office. The police also arrest the senior journalist and two more staffs and confiscate three computers.
The arrest takes place after Special Branch police file charges with the counter terrorism laws 50 (A) and 52 (A) against the news outlet's chief editor Khaing Mrat Kyaw at Myoma Police Station in the morning on March 31, 2020. The chief editor is out of the office during the searching.
The three arrested journalists are Thein Zaw, Aung Lin Tun, and Tun Naing. Their families don’t know where they are taken to. They are concerned the safety and harsh interrogations of their sons.
Their parents even don’t know what charges the police filed against their sons.
The tough charges are made against the chief editor after Home Minister Lt. General Saw Htut announced Arakan Army as terrorist organization.
One of the police officers remains in anonymous says Khaing Mrat Kyaw is charged with anti terrorist laws for interviewing and broadcasting AA spokesperson Khaing Thu Kha.
There is no report found Narianjara broadcasted the interview after the announcement.
In addition to crackdown Rakhine media, U Nay Myo Lin, Chief Editor of Voice of Myanmar (MOV), is issued detention-remand by the court in Mandalay and charged with counter terrorism laws 50 (A) and 52 (A) on March 31st.
Police arrest him at the office this morning in Mandalay.
|AA and Kachin leaders in Liza|
Sittway. March 30, 2020
Myanmar Army’s Northern Commander General Tayza Kyaw met Kachin’s Peace Creation Group leader Duwa Lami Gum Ja in Kachin State Capital City Myitkyina on March 23 and told the group leader to deliver the message Myanmar army would attack headquarter of Arakan Army in the territory of Kachin Independent Organization (KIO).
He made this clear shortly after Myanmar government declared AA as terrorist organization.
He made this clear shortly after Myanmar government declared AA as terrorist organization.
Duwa Lami Gum Ja told the local news outlets KIO would respond it after Federal Political Negotiating and Consultative Committee (FPNCC) meeting. The committee is political alliance and negotiating political settlement with Myanmar government.
The alliance is comprised with United Wa State Army (UWSA), Myanmar National Democratic Alliance Army (MNDAA) known as Kokang, Shan State Progressive Party (SSPP), Kachin Independent Organization (KIO), Ta’ang National Liberation Army (TNLA), and Arakan Army.
Arakan Army is also member of Northern Alliance combined with KIO, MNDDA, and TNLA.
Three Brotherhood Alliance, AA, MNDAA, and TNLA, has already rejected Myanmar government designation of AA as terrorist organization and determined they would unit and resist the aggression.
The army Spokesperson Maj. Gen. Zaw Min Tun told the press AA would not only face consequences but also its supporters, harbors, and affiliated individuals and organizations. He further hipped AA would be excluded from peace talks.
Before the announcement was made, relatives of AA commander Gen Tun Myat Naing were arrested and tried with terrorist laws since last year. Over two hundred accused villagers are also trying with the terrorist laws. Some were already given harsh and lengthy sentences in prisons.
Myanmar courts also issued arrest warrants over the AA key leaders including its commander.
After encountering heavy casualties of the Myanmar troops and high-ranking officers in the Rakhine battle within a short period of time, military commanders last year pursued to declare AA as terrorist group. But the government ceasefire negotiation with AA prevented the whirl.
Last April, the map of AA base location in Liza was released and threaten to launch surgical air strikes. Since then AA leaders have been mobilizing its command and control centers in different locations in the north.
At this time NLD government agrees the military leaderships persuasion to declare AA as terrorist organization.
Thus, the military leaderships carefully calculate pro and con of the aggressive move.
There was speculation that some leaderships among KIO were not happy AA leaders remaining in Kachin territory.
KIO Chairman N’Ban La met the government representatives in Chiang Mai last year. Their discussions were not released in public. But observers assumed the meeting was out of protocol and unusual.
But some Kachin leaders remain strong tie with the AA leaders. In respect, AA fighters assisted KIO during the waring with the army in 2011 and 2012. Many Arakanese fighters sacrificed their live during the war.
Former Rakhine leaders publicly spoke that some Rakhine youths in 2006, the current leaders of AA, met and discussed with the KIA leaders to set up their bases and give military training in Kachin. The talks took place before the ceasefire broke out in 2011. Then AA was formed in Liza in 2009.
The commitment of AA and KIO is somehow firm and sharing political aim of self determination and strategic military cooperation based on understating in bitter experience of oppression.
Analysts warn military solution against KIO on regard to AA located in Kachin will definitely hinder the peace process.
Reliable sources disclose that the military leaderships are aware of the consequences if they attack KIA. Wa and other ethnic forces in the northern parts will unavoidably join the defensive war.
Regard to the military threat, experts point out the army cannot effort to launch two front wars, Rakhine and Kachin. Outnumbers of troops are sent to Rakhine and facing with overwhelm resistance. If it is fighting war against Kachin, the army will be defeated as German Nazi lost in Russia .
Concern comes to Wa, it is founder and leading party of FPNCC in the north. It is also supporter and sympathizer of AA.
Observers predict that Wa will back AA in FPNCC meeting and support KIO to resist the army aggression. In fact AA is strategic partner of both parties.
It is very interesting how FPNCC members will respond to the ultimatum of Myanmar army.
It is predictable that subsequent consequences of aggressive and reckless military action against KIO by the army for harboring AA is certainly misconduct.
|Col. Thet Naing Oo from LID 77 captured by AA|
Branding Arakan Army as Terrorists Don’t Impress Much
Sittway, March 27, 2020
Men are originally created equal, but the equality can be destroyed by subsequent circumstance, mostly by distinction, restriction, and punishing of the ruler.
British once made distinction and braded Irish Republican Army (IRA) as terrorist organization and gave the ultimatum, “We don’t negotiate with the terrorist.”
Of the Irish faith on revolution, justice, and equality, the confronting British realized it could not be total winner but reached political settlement and restored peace.
While the whole world is busy combating coronavirus infection, Myanmar government designates Arakan Army and its political wing United League of Arakan as illegal organization. Newly appointed Home Minister Lt. General Soe Htut even makes harsher stand on announcing AA as terrorist group.
These twin announcements are not clear whether one requires parliamentary approval or not to make such strong law.
But one thing clear is that NLD government gives power concession to the military leaderships, especially the political future, security, and freedom in the hand of soldiers, after NLD party totally lost the constitution amendment attempt.
It has already had worsen civilian casualties and increasing of Internally Displaced Persons from 100,000 to 150,000 in the middle of March after Myanmar air force constant bombing in Kyauktaw, Minbya, Rathedaung, and Paletwa townships.
Now, the lethal legal tolls are handed over to the most brutal and rouge army in the world. It will terrorize the Rakhine people as it did to Rohingya in 2017, resulting in thousands killed and over 700,000 refugees forced out of the country. Similar atrocities are predictable.
The army has already had rooted out the Rakhine people by harassing, burning the houses, and driving out of the villagers since the beginning of the operation in 2019.
In order of misery of the life of people, helicopters and jet fighters are randomly bombing the villages. Navy indiscriminately shoot the artilleries into the villagers along way of the rivers, making the people impossible to live.
All these abuses committed by the army is every attempt the military makes the people weaker and starve to death under the evil design of fear and persecution which the military leaders believe such atrocity will deter the people supporting AA.
The elected government shares the same view as the military does so that the government banned the internet, imposed curfew laws, and now approves the terrorist organization.
Sadly, the country is again heading to the wrong direction after ICJ, ICC, and other international bodies compounded various laws suits against the state and leaders for violating international laws and genocide against the Muslim people.
The ending of this fail policy and context against the own ethnic people as it seems to be racial war rather than political war is nowhere it will go but its own end, disuniting the country and inviting international intervention.
The response of the Rakhine people as AA commander General Tun Myant Naing said during the interview with RFA, the terrorist law does not impress him much but fate of greater autonomy and equality of the Rakhine people are at high stake since people and freedom fighters have already paid tremendous human sacrifices.
Having been already poor and marginalized, Myanmar army designation of AA as terrorist organization does not bother the people that much. They have little choice but confront the oppressors and ready to pay higher price for their cause to achieve greater autonomy.
History had taught Rakhine people an unamicable lesson whereas their loyalty toward the Burman dominated central government for seventy years they served in the army, administration, and public services rewarded nothing but discrimination, marginalization, and famine.
Rakhine people had supported Aung San Suu Kyi and democracy movement for decades and hoped that their lives would be change and better. It did not happen at all.
The parliament democracy system and election process do not encourage the people after their elected leaders are deprived of representation under the leadership of Nobel Peace Prize Winner Aung San Suu Kyi.
Then the armed revolution comes to the people in due cause of self-determination that gets from nowhere but the central government repression.
Rakhine State is always a solid social and cultural community whereas people design it for wants and security for their own good based on equal rights and equal opportunities. Military men cannot detect them what to do at gunpoint.
This ill design of military solution over the Rakhine people will not restore any peace but dialogue and political settlement.