Police in Myanmar Probe Killing of Two Christian Kachin Refugees

ICC Note: The bodies of two Kachin refugees living in Mansi township were recovered last Thursday and police are investigating. Both victims are reported to have exit wounds in their skulls. Witnesses and human rights organizations claim that the two victims were taken away by Burmese soldiers.

03/13/2018 Myanmar (Myanmar Times) – Police have begun investigating the killing of two Kachin men living in a refugee camp in Mansi township, Police Colonel Myo Thura Naung of Kachin Police Forces told The Myanmar Times.

The victims, 60-year-old U Hpaugan Yaw and 30-year-old Ko Nhkum Naw San from Kachin Baptist Convention (KBC) and Catholic Church (RC), respectively, went missing on January 31 while they were searching for their missing water buffaloes.

The bodies of the two men, who were both residents of Maing Hkawng IDP camp in Mansi township, were recovered on Thursday.

“We’re carrying out an investigation of their deaths,” Colonel Myo Thura Naung said. “We’re now questioning witnesses.”

“The investigation will be conducted according to police procedures in order to find out the truth. The investigation is still going on, so details cannot be disclosed,” he said.

Colonel Myo Thura Naung said the Mansi township police station filed a murder case under section 302 of the penal code.

The family members of the deceased and the Maing Hkawng village administrator were questioned by police on Saturday.

Two people who claimed to have seen the murders were also interviewed by Mansi township police, said Ko Aung Myu San, youth leader of Maing Hkawng IDP Camp.

U Lamai Gum Ja, spokesperson of the Myitkyna-based Peace Talks Creation Group, said an examination of the two dead men revealed that their bodies did not have injuries from being tortured or beaten, but that both died from exit wounds in their skulls.

“The examination concluded that they probably died from an open head injury. It was said that they were probably shot in the mouth. The report is with Mansi police,” he said.

A group of armed men allegedly tied the two victims and interrogated them, according to family members of the victims who asked to remain anonymous due to safety concerns.

Fortify Rights, a Southeast Asian human rights organisation, claimed that the two victims were arrested by Tatmadaw soldiers.

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