Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman

or Degrading Treatment or Punishment



Lt Khin Maung Win of Regt 436 has become notorious in the area. He has issued orders that whenever he passes through a village, all villagers must crouch to the ground before him with heads bowed. If he encounters people in the fields, the must also drop their work and crouch, head bowed, before him. Any villager who dares to raise their head receives 3 or 4 violent blows from the cane which he always carries with him. Villagers in the area have nicknamed him "Bo Chay Lone", which means "Lieutenant Cane". While doing slave labour for the military, villagers in the area are also now taunted by a popular joke among the soldiers, who say to them, "You want democracy? This is it – enjoy it."


Reports from all over the country show that brutality of the military is rising. Routinely in rural areas forms of torture or other ill treatment are meted out to villagers who have done nothing to deserve this. For example, the barbaric treatment of Rohingya in Buthidaung Township has been continuing with more intensity, and there have been unconfirmed reports of rape, torture and killings of more than 50 Rohingya Muslims including young women in the area by the Burmese military positioned in the region. But this treatment is not confined only to ethnic areas – increasingly in urban settings individual and mass forms of brutality are also occurring in large numbers. Burmans, pregnant women, elderly and even children are victims of SLORC, while even within the Tatmadaw, there exists inhumane treatment by military leaders.


[see also under “Eye-witness Accounts”, interview 2-4, 6, 8-11, 13-15, 17-18, 20-24, 26-27, 32, 35-38, 41, 44-45, 47-51, 54-56, 58-61, 63-67, 70-73, 75-77, 79-80, 83-94, 97-98, 100-102, 104, 109-112, 114, 117-118, 122, 125-127, 130-138, 140-144]


List of Incidents


On 15 January, Coy 5 of IB 69, commanded by Maj Myint Kyi, raided Na Moop Village, Mong Young Parish, Hsenwi Township, northern Shan State and took prisoner the headman, Khing Kyarn. He was tied up by soldiers and suspended from the ceiling. Not only was he beaten but also burnt during an interrogation. On the same day, Ai La, a villager, was arrested and tortured by cutting the skin on his chest in various places. The victim had to be later hospitalised. [source: SHRF]


On 16 January Coy 5 of IB 69, commanded by Maj Myint Kyi ransacked Mong Young Parish, Hsenwi Township. Sarng Kham Luan, a resident of Worn Parng Yarp Village in the same parish was arrested. During an interrogation, he was severely tortured by cutting the skin on his chest. [source: SHRF]


On 18 January, Maj Myint Kyi's troops of Coy 5 of IB 69, while travelling to Na Moop Village, pillaged Worn Parng Yarp Village, Mong Young Parish, Hsenwi Township, and Sarng Kham Luen, Nai Poo, Sarng Khe and the entire household of Pu Loi Sarng Sue were beaten by soldiers. [source: SHRF]


On 20 January, after setting fire to property in Norng Sarng Village, the troops from Coy 3 of IB 240 raided and ransacked Na Moop Village and arrested the village headman, Sarng Swe. They covered the local leader's head with a plastic bag and started questioning him, beating him for most of the time. Then the SLORC arrested Mong Ngwe, the youth leader in the same village, and administered a vicious beating that caused a severe injury to his head. [source: SHRF]


On 24 January, Coy 3 of IB 240 returned to Na Moop Village. After arriving in the village, the following 10 local women were arrested and beaten without any apparent reason; Awk Loi Kya, Awk Loi Luen, Ea Lu, Awk Loi Pu, Ea Tsing Nyunt, Awk Loi Nang, Awk Loi Tun, Ea Shwe, Ea L and Awk Loi Parng. [source: SHRF]


On 27 January, Coy 2 Comdr Soe Win of IB 24, under the command of TOC 331 of LID 33, entered Lay Kay Village, Thaton Township, Mon State, and shot Po Li Kee (20), causing him serious wounds. [source: ABSDF/KNU]


On 3 February, Maung Myint Soe of Win Ta Pan Village, Thaton Township, was beaten without any reason by Lt Man Son from SLORC IB 84. The victim's fate is unknown.


On 3 February, five villagers – Maung Chit, Maung Shwe Lher, Saw Thay Ler, Saw Per Klai and Por Ker Ra – from Kyu Kyi Village, Thaton District, who returned from a funeral service were arrested and severely beaten by SLORC troops from IB 84 of LID 99. [source: ABSDF/KNU]


On 23 February, SLORC IB 39 went to Tee Lo Village (aka Daw Moo Deh Village) in Taungoo District, and arrested one man and three women. All four were beaten severely and then left to die.


On 25 February, SLORC troops from IB 26 arrived at Koe Nee Village, Taungoo District, and severely beat Maung Kan Soe.


On 17 March, SLORC Coy Comdr Aung Myat Kyaw from IB 73 tortured 18 villagers from Ko Nee Village in Nyaunglebin District.


On 21 April, SLORC troops from IB 425 and 426 conducted a raid while they on patrol in Thung Pung Parish, Mong Morn Township, southern Shan State. Arrests were made of Sai Sarng (41) from Worn Mai Village, Lung Khin (55) from Ye Won Village and Sarn Pya (30) from Worn Fai Lin Village. SLORC troops accused the villagers of having contact with the rebels. During the interrogation, the villagers were forced to confess to the above-mentioned accusation although there was a lack of corroborating evidence. They were again tortured while being repeatedly questioned, resulting in their premature deaths by torture and severe beatings. [source: SHRF]


On 24 April, Comdr Aung Kyaing arrested and tortured Saw Kho Lar (40) living New Village, Kyauk Kyi Township, Nyaung Lebin District. The victim was beaten with a G-13 rifle butt in the head and his face was tread on with combat boots. Then he was taken to Hteik Htu outpost. [source: KYO]


On 24 April, Saw Kho Deh (35) of New Village, Kyauk Kyi Township, Nyaung Lebin District, was arrested and beaten by Comdr Aung Kyaing. The victim was threatened by pulling a pistol in and out of his mouth. The victim managed to escape while he was asked to bring his headman to the troops. [source: KYO]


On 25 April, Maung Pyone Cho (35) of Ma Taw Koo Village, Kyauk Kyi Township, Nyaung Lebin District, was accused of being a member of the KNU by Lt Tun Tun of IB 35. The victim was beaten, his face was covered with a plastic bag and repeatedly punched. Then, he was brought to Hteik Htu outpost and detained there. [source: KYO]


On 25 April, SLORC troops from IB 425 and 426 entered Parng Luen Village, Thung Pong Parish in Hse Seng Township, southern Shan State, and arrested Paw Sarng Vee (male, 35). SLORC troops accused him of having contact with the rebels. His watch was taken by the soldiers during the interrogation. Soldiers not only beat and kicked him, but also dripped hot melted wax on his stomach. His shin bones were rolled with a gun magazine. He managed to escape while the soldiers were planning to kill him after the interrogation. [source: SHRF]


On 31 May SLORC troops from 2nd Column of IB 39 came to Ta Pah Kee Village in Taungoo District and looted 250,000 Ks in cash from Saw Potha Dah, headman of Mah Lah Ko Village, and his friend. They took Potha Dah, his wife, a church deacon, and Ta Pah Kee Village headman Saw Pa Aye along with them as captives to their camp, where Saw Pa Aye was tortured seriously while the troops demanded another 250,000 Ks for their release.


On 15 August, local SLORC troops in Sakhan Gyi Village, Win Yan Township, tortured Maung Tun Kyi, Toe Phaw, Phar Tha, Daw Mu Dah, Daw Pi and Dae Di about robbery and tortured them when they said they did not know what the soldiers were talking about. Of them, Maung Tun Kyi was again tortured on 1 October and sought treatment because of injuries by soldiers. [source: Bar Zi Tan]


On 8 June SLORC troops commanded by Lt Aung Tun from Coy 4 of IB 34 came to Naw K'Toh Village, Thaton District, and shot Dee Pa Leh's cow and took it for their rations. They beat the owner once and his son 3 times with a stick without any reason, and then they scathed his son with a gunshot.


On 3 July, commanding officer Saw Win Naing from IB 73 arrested innocent villagers Maung Htwe and Ko Thein from Mone Township, Nyaunglebin District. The victims were subjected to a severe beating without cause.


On 13 September, SLORC soldiers from IB 63 came to Saw Law Kloh Village, Thaton District, and seized three villagers; Saw Ko Nyeh (43), Saw Ku Nu (43) and Saw Pa Naw Si (37). The soldiers tied up the three men and took them to the soldiers’ camp, where they beat the men, poked them with a knife until they were bleeding, and beat their heads so hard that they defecated.


On 27 September, SLORC troops from LIB 355 led by a certain Coy Comdr kicked Kyaw Pay and Phar Sar Mi, villagers from Htee Mu Kalay (aka Ah Pyin Kwin Ka Lay) Village in Myawaddy Township, with combat boots. The victims were also punched with the barrels of rifles and underwent a forced interrogation asking whether they knew Ki Kay from the KNU. When the victims replied by saying “No”, they were beaten more. They were blindfold with a sarong and threatened with death. While they were waiting for their last breath, they were told that villagers from their village suffered only beatings, and that for villagers from No Phone, another village, anybody found even outside the village will be shot dead on sight. When the troops left, the victims tried very hard to loosen their ropes. U Ku Lu and Kyaw Haw Maw from Htee Mu Ka Village were also forced to lie down on the ground by the troops from LIB 357. Both victims were beaten with the butt and flat of a knife which belonged to U Ku Lu and they were tread on and kick by the whole column except those who had already passed them before. [source: Bar Zi Tan]


On 27 September, Naw Khu Tel, mother of a 5-month-old baby, and Naw Mi Taw Wah were also beaten by SLORC troops from LIB 355. [source: Bar Zi Tan]


On 29 September, Dah Naw Htoo and Phar Yoe were beaten and asked whether they saw a stranger in the area. When the victims replied truthfully by saying “No”, they were forcibly interrogated and continually beaten. As they could no longer bear the beatings, they said “Yes” according to the will of SLORC troops, who only then stopped the incessant beatings. [source: Bar Zi Tan]


On 28 October, SLORC troops from IB 62, led by Deputy Bn Comdr Than Win, Capt Aung Lwin and Coy Comdr Capt Aye Min, aimed mortars on porters from Kaw Kha Taw, Kyaw Tan and Kaw Goe villages in Kyaikmaraw Township, Mon State, who managed to escape, causing U Nyein (56), Maung Hla Tin (14) and Maung Kun Kaw (13) from Kaw Goe Village, Mon State, to be hit with splinters and severely wounded. [source: DPNS/NLD-LA/NMSP]


On 25 November, a military column from IB 410 entered Paukpinkwin Village, Yephyu Township, and arrested the women as they did not find any males in the village at that time. Women – from the young to those older than 40 years – were given one bullet each to hold onto, with the meaning that “this bullet is for you”. The wife of Village Chairman U Sher and Ma Mi Ngwe, Secretary Nai Phyu Ngwe were forced to balance a bullet on their heads from 8:00 a.m. to sunset. None of them were allowed to eat nor drink anything. Mi Tut (female, 50) lost consciousness because of heatstroke and anaemia. They were spared only when their spouses came back and replaced them. Chairman U Sher, Secretary U Nai Ngwe Phyu and Nai Nyan Aung, a former school teacher, were subjected to severe beatings. All the males were arrested and forced to build barracks for the soldiers for one day and one night.


On 26 November, SLORC troops from LIB 410 led by Capt Than Wai forced 30 females – including those are at the age of 75 – to stand under the scorching sun all day long. These victims were Ma Tin Nyan (19), Ma Thein (21), Mat Tut (27), Ma Hla Kyi (32), Ma In (32), Daw Ya (42), Daw Kayin (50), Daw Kun (55), Daw Ngwe Khin (56), Daw Hla Tin (64), Daw Hla Kyaing (68), Daw Ngwe (75), Daw Mi, Mi Tut (50), Ma Tin Hla, Ma Kyi, Ngwe In, Daw Lae, Ma Kyin, Ma Ngwe, the elderly Daw Lwe, Daw Phu Akae, Daw Phyu, Daw Si and Mi Nge. [source: NMSP]


About two hundred soldiers of IB 94 took porters from Won Kung-kaad Village, Lailha Township. One of the porters, Tsai Kyaw Aye was unable to carry the loads which the soldiers forced on him. He was tied to a horse and then drug at a run through the forest. He was seriously wounded. Tsai Kyaw Aye was only 25 year old. [source: SHRF]


A former teacher and 2 of his sons from “B” Quarter of Yin Mar Pin Township were tied up at the back, put under the scorching sun and subjected to incessant beatings. Each household was assigned to send 2 family members and contribute labour 4 times. Those who came were fed with the poorest quality of watery rice with brinjal [a vegetable]. As the labourers were forced to work under the scorching sun from early in the morning to 10:00 p.m., most of them became sick, and the resources of local doctors became over-burdened as a result. [source: ABSDF]