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State of Violence in Myanmar February 2023

Post military coup in Myanmar on February 01, 2021, an intensive armed resistance movement has emerged which has not been seen in the past in the country. Mapping the level of violence is difficult given the lack of confirmed inputs. A number of media sources which support the resistance and non governmetn organisations have been regularly publishing details of violence. The military ruled state administration has been largely silent on this issue.

Never the less weaving from numerous media reports the state of violence in Myanmar in February 2023 can be mapped as given below-

Intense fighting is ongoing in Mandalay, Sagaing, Magwe, Bago, and Tanintharyi regions and Karen and Kayah states. There is also fierce resistance in the Chin State. The Kachin Independence Organization (KIO), one of Myanmar’s most powerful ethnic groups, has called for rapid and unified resistance to oust a military junta in crisis.

Assistance Association for Political Prisoners (AAPP), which monitors regime killings and arrests has claimed that 3000 civilians have been killed by the military after the coup.. 19,739 people have been arrested and, of them, 15,882 remain are under detention.

Similarly, Myanmar military troops have been accused of burning down 55,484 houses since the 2021 coup, according to independent research team Data For Myanmar. Data For Myanmar collected reports of arson attacks until January 31. 80 percent of the destroyed houses were in Sagaing Region as per the Irrawaddy

Resistance stronghold Sagaing Region suffered the most arson attacks, with 43,292 houses burned, followed by 8,863 in Magwe Region and 1,484 in Chin State, according to Data For Myanmar’s report. Of those killed, 1,229 people, or nearly 41 percent of total fatalities, were killed by junta and Pyu Saw Htee militia personnel in Sagaing Region. Neighboring Mandalay Region ranked second with 350 killed, while Yangon Region followed with 316. The report did not include those killed fighting the miltary thus the numbers could increase.

Land mines and unexploded munitions injured or killed more than one person every day in Myanmar last year, the United Nations said, pointing to a 40 percent spike in casualties compared to 2021.

United Nations Children’s Fund, UNICEF, reported that 390 people were wounded or killed by land mines or unexploded ordnance in 2022, an almost 40 percent spike compared to the previous year. Around two-thirds of the incidents were reported in border areas where ethnic rebels have battled the army and each other for decades over autonomy and control of resources like timber, jade and the drugs trade.


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