Civilian forced to accept compensation after being beaten by members of MPDF

October 4, 2019

HURFOM: On 25 September 2019, a resident living in Myoma 2 Quarter, Lamine Town, Ye Township, Mon State, was forced to accept compensation after being beaten and accused of being a drug dealer by a Major with the Mon Peace Defense Front (MPDF).

The victim was attacked on the way home from his plantation. Major Thike Win and his Junior, Ah Wa, stopped the victim and grabbed his bag to check for any drugs. It has been reported that both the Major Thike Win and Junior Ah Wa then repeatedly slapped and kicked the victim, when they did not find any drugs. They accused him of hiding them elsewhere.

The victim reported the Major threatened him saying, “Don’t tell about this in the village. Don’t inform anyone. There will be a problem between us if your complaint [is] exposed.”

The victim suffered facial injuries from the altercation.

Five days after the incident the Major summoned the victim to the village Administrative office to sign documents indicating he agreed to receive a compensation payment in the amount of 2 million kyats related to the incident and to cover his medical fees.

My mother worried they could harm me if I open the case as they have power. Also [she was] concerned they would do something to my sister living in [the] plantation. Later, they [intimidated] me [saying they] will shoot me with a gun, so I have to accept their offering. They said to wait 7 days for the money,” said the victim.

The incident was so unnerving he considered selling his plantation particularly after his hut was smashed and threats were made by the MPDF group.

We don’t understand about law to confront the trial. We are afraid of them as they have power and gun. They also have followers. We don’t have anyone to lead this case. Most of us are afraid of them. We are concerned they might do something when going to the plantation. Therefore, I have to accept their compensation. We will be shot (by gun) if we keep refusing,” said the victim’s elder sister.

The Village Administrator would not investigate the complaint saying the matter should be dealt with by the police.

According to local sources, Major Seik Win has often beaten and made accusations about other villagers. People have remained silent for fear of being harmed. Villagers wish to see Seik Win dismissed from his position.

There are many small splinter groups that have surrendered to the military commands in Mon State. It has been reported that some of these splinter groups are involved with the drug trade, arms trafficking and some threaten local people to give up their land (land grabbing).

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