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‘Horrified’ UN official condemns reported Myanmar killings

 |  Today Headlines

‘Horrified’ UN official condemns reported Myanmar killings

| Top stories | Today Headlines

The ruling military did not comment on the incident near the village of Mo So in Kayah state on Friday and junta spokesman Zaw Min Tun could not be reached for comment.

State media reported that soldiers shot and killed an unknown number of “armed terrorists” in forces fighting the military government. State media did not say anything about the civilian casualties.

UN Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator Martin Griffiths said reports of the killing of civilians, including at least one child, was credible.

“I condemn this serious incident and all attacks against civilians throughout the country, which are prohibited by international humanitarian law,” he said in a statement.

Griffiths called for “a full and transparent investigation” so that the perpetrators can be brought to justice and called for the protection of civilians.

Residents and a human rights group working in the area said soldiers killed civilians. Photographs released by the human rights group showed charred bodies, some in the back of a burned-out truck.

Myanmar has been in turmoil since the military toppled the elected government of Nobel Laureate Aung San Suu Kyi on February 1.

More than 1,300 people have been killed in the crackdown on protests and more than 11,000 have been jailed, according to a count by the Association for Assistance of Political Prisoners, an advocacy group for political prisoners.

The army disputes the group’s death toll.

Some opponents of the military have taken up arms, some rallying to ethnic minority guerrillas who have been fighting the government for self-determination for years in various parts of the country, including Kayah state in the east.

Aid group Save the Children said two of its workers, who were traveling to their home villages for the year-end vacation, were missing in the attack. It has suspended operations in Kayah State and parts of neighboring Karen State and the Magway region.

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