Soldiers Steal From Civilians in Loikaw

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By Kantarawaddy Times

After the regime bolstered security measures in Loikaw, locals have lodged complaints about extortion by soldiers while passing military checkpoints in the Karenni State capital.

“I travelled to Loikaw last week to purchase fertilizer. They discovered money in my wallet and accused me of supporting a resistance group,” said a man who spoke to Kantarawaddy Times about the incident on condition of anonymity. He reported that they threatened to kill him with a knife while shouting, “we can kill all of them.”

“They confiscated my money but didn’t beat me up. Some of my friends have been beaten and kicked from soldiers at a checkpoint,” he revealed. However, the man was detained for approximately an hour, and the soldiers stole about $143.

“The Burma army behaves like thieves,” said U Banyar, the founder of Karenni Human Rights Group. He stated that soldiers have perpetrated human rights abuses. They frequently extort money from individuals, depriving them of their rights to travel safely and safeguard their personal belongings.

The Military Council cannot fully control any of the seven townships and only commands the major towns of Karenni State. But the rule of law remains ineffective, and the number of thieves and burglars is on the rise in the towns.

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