Hpa-an Incident Report: Explicit and violent threats in Myaing Gyi Ngu Town, Hlaingbwe Township, April 2015

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Published date:
Friday, August 28, 2015

This Incident Report describes a violent threat made on April 25th 2015 by senior monk U Nyan Ni Ka to the siblings of Maung A---, who was killed by Border Guard Force (BGF) soldiers from Battalion #1011 on April 24th 2015. Monk U Nyan Ni Ka threatened the siblings when they came to request compensation for Maung A---’s death. Monk U Nyan Ni Ka said he would cut them all with his knife. As a result of this threat, Maung A---’s siblings were frightened and had to return to their village without receiving the full amount of money that they had expected to receive. For more information on the killing of Maung A---, see: “Hpa-an Incident Report: Violent abuse and killing committed by BGF soldiers in Myaing Gyi Ngu Town, April 2015,” KHRG, August 2015.

Incident Report | Myaing Gyi Ngu Town, Hlaingbwe Township, Hpa-an District (April 2015)

The following Incident Report was written by a community member in Hpa-an District who has been trained by KHRG to monitor local human rights conditions. It is presented below translated exactly as originally written, save for minor edits for clarity and security.[1] This report was received in June 2015 along with other information from Hpa-an District, including one other incident report, seven interviews, one situation update, and 201 photographs.[2]

Part 1 – Incident Details

Type of Incident

Violent threats

Date of Incident(s)

April 25th 2015

Incident Location

(Village, Township and District)

B--- Section, Son Nan Tha Myaing Shwe Myo Taw Zone, Myaing Gyi Ngu Town, Hpa-an District

 

Victim Information

Name

Maung M---

Ma N---

U O---

Age

45

39

52

Sex

Male

Female

Male

Nationality

Karen

Karen

Karen

Family   

Married

Married

Married

Occupation

Farmer

Vendor

Farmer

Religion

Buddhist

Buddhist

Buddhist

Position

Villager

Villager

Villager

Village

C---

C---

C---

 

Name(s)                   

 

Position

Area

Superior’s name

U Nyan Ni Ka

Sa Cha[3] [senior] monk

Myaing Gyi Ngu Town

U Thuzana [head monk][4]

Part 2 - Information Quality

1. Explain in detail how you collected this information.

While I was collecting information about the killing of Maung A---, which took place on April 23rd 2015,[5] I unexpectedly realised that it [the case] also included [an incident of] violent threats in the information that I was given. Therefore, I continued to collect more information about it.

 

2. Explain how the source verified this information.

The people who provided the information to me did not focus on the violent threat case. While providing information on the [Muang A---] killing case, they also included [information about the] violent threat case.

U G--- [C--- villager], reported that U Nyan Ni Ka said in front of Maung M--- and his siblings, “Don’t you know that [people] must not be drunk in this place [because of the many vehicles in and around the bus station and taxi stand]. Bring me a knife and I am going to cut all of you people [the three siblings].” You can listen to U G---’s interview about how he [U Nyan Ni Ka] threatened the victim’s siblings.[6]

Part 3 – Complete Description of the Incident

Describe the Incident(s) in complete detail. For each incident, be sure to include 1) when the incident happened, 2) where it happened, 3) what happened, 4) how it happened, 5) who was involved, and 6) why it happened. Also describe any villager response(s) to the incident, the aftermath and the current living situation of the victims. Please use the space prepared below, and create an attachment if needed.

The violent threat case that I am going to discuss is a consequence of the killing of Maung A---, which happened on April 23rd 2015. The violent threat case happened on April 25th 2015 in B--- section, Son Nan Tha Myaing Shwe Myo Taw Zone, Myaing Gyi Ngu Town. [The threat was made] by the second senior monk, who is also the Sa Cha senior monk, U Nyan Ni Ka, who is 50 years old and is the assistant of [head monk] U Thuzana. The incident took place at his monastery.

The type of case is violent threats causing the villagers to be afraid. The person who made the violent threat is the second senior monk and Sa Cha senior monk U Nyan Ni Ka.

I tried to find out more information about the reason why he threatened [Maung A---’s siblings] and I now know that he committed the violent threat because he did not want to pay full compensation for [the death of Maung A---], which is 3,000,000 kyat (US $2,637.24).[7]

On April 23rd 2015, [Maung] A---, at 37 years old, was killed by a soldier from Border Guard Force (BGF)[8] Battalion #1011. When Maung M---, 45 years old, Ma N---, 39 years old, and U O---, 52 years old [Maung A---’s siblings], went to Sa Cha monk U Nyan Ni Ka to request compensation [as ordered by the BGF] of 3,000,000 kyat (US $2,637.24), U Nyan Ni Ka did not want to pay [them] full compensation. Instead, he ordered [to another monk], “Give me a knife and I will cut to kill them all [Maung A---’s siblings]!” He threatened them. Since Maung M--- and his siblings dared not to continue to request the compensation, they prepared to go back to C--- village. Meanwhile, U Nyan Ni Ka paid them 500,000 kyat (US $439.70) as compensation for Maung A---’s death. They also went back to the village frightened. They also dared not do anything like open the case at the court or prosecute [U Nyan Ni Ka or the BGF soldiers who killed Maung A---].

Part 4 - Permission for Using the Details

Did the victim(s) provide permission to use this information? Explain how that permission was provided.

I knew [gathered information about] this threatening case from U D---, 45 years old and U G---, 45 years old, who are C--- villagers. They also gave me permission to use the information of threatening case [in addition to information regarding the killing of Maung A---].

Footnotes

[1] KHRG trains community members in southeast Burma/Myanmar to document individual incidents of abuse using a standardised reporting format; conduct interviews with other villagers; and write general updates on the situation in areas with which they are familiar. When writing incident reports, community members are encouraged to document incidents of abuse that they consider to be important, by verifying information from multiple sources, assessing for potential biases and comparing to local trends.

[2] In order to increase the transparency of KHRG methodology and more directly communicate the experiences and perspectives of villagers in southeast Burma/Myanmar, KHRG aims to make all field information received available on the KHRG website once it has been processed and translated, subject only to security considerations. For additional reports categorised by Type, Issue, Location and Year, please see the Related Readings component following each report on KHRG’s website.

[3] Sa Cha refers to a senior monk who is responsible for the religious mentoring of less experienced monks at the monastery. 

[4] U Thuzana is an influential Buddhist monk based in Myaing Gyi Ngu who was instrumental in the formation of the DKBA in 1994; see "Inside the DKBA," KHRG, March 1996. In 1995, KHRG reported that U Thuzana had collaborated with the Tatmadaw, and met with then-Southeastern Commander Major General Maung Hla to obtain weapons and supplies for 4,000 soldiers in his monastery. As a result of the agreement, U Thuzana’s monastery in Myaing Gyi Ngu, in northern Hpa-an District, reportedly developed a reputation as a mystical safe haven for villagers avoiding Tatmadaw abuses. See “Karen Human Rights Group commentary,” KHRG, February 1995.

[5] Maung A--- was taken to the BGF camp and beaten on the evening of April 23rd 2015, however as he finally succumbed to his injuries and died at 12:15 am, the actual date of Maung A---’s death is April 24th 2015. See more at “Hpa-an Incident Report: Violent abuse and killing committed by BGF soldiers in Myaing Gyi Ngu Town, April 2015,” KHRG, August 2015.

[6] KHRG receives information from field researchers in both audio and written format. In this case, the unpublished interview with U G--- the researcher is referring to was recorded and sent to KHRG in audio format.

[7] All estimates for the kyat in this report are based on the July 14th 2015 market rate of 1,137 kyat to the US $1.

[8] Border Guard Force (BGF) battalions of the Tatmadaw were established in 2010, and they are composed mostly of soldiers from former non-state armed groups, such as older constellations of the DKBA, which have formalised ceasefire agreements with the Burma/Myanmar government and agreed to transform into battalions within the Tatmadaw. BGF battalions are assigned four digit battalion numbers, whereas regular Tatmadaw infantry battalions are assigned two digit battalion numbers and light infantry battalions are identified by two or three-digit battalion numbers. For more information, see “DKBA officially becomes Border Guard Force” Democratic Voice of Burma, August 2010, and, “Exploitation and recruitment under the DKBA in Pa’an District,” KHRG, June 2009.