Detailed Analysis on War Crimes of Military Council at A Nang Pa

On October 23, 2022 at Burmese standard time on 8:40 pm, around 80 people were killed and more than 50 were injured, including many civilians, during the air strike by bombing of fighter jets from military while people were celebrating 62nd anniversary of forming the Kachin Independence Organization at A Nang Pa in KIA 9th brigade area which was more than 2 miles from Kansee village in Hpakant town. Among dead and injured were famous Kachin singers, invited business owners, civilians and officers and ordinary soldiers from KIA 9th brigade including brigade commander, mentioned in the local news. For the worse, the terrorist military blocked the injured people to be sent for treatment to Hpakant town, obviously ignoring human rights and blocking humanitarian assistance.

Moreover, Hpakant residents told Federal Journal, that military even threatened those who escaped from life threatening situation and came to Hpakant hospital and clinic, that they would be charged by illegal association act 17/1. “The act of military council targeting not only the ethnic Kachin people but also the civilian population, is systematically committing war crimes, the crimes against humanity and especially the case of mass murder, and it is not forgivable according to international law and also from the human rights point of view.” pointed out Moon Nay Li, the spokesperson from Kachin Women Association- Thailand, a member organization of Women’s League of Burma, mentioned in the Federal Journal.

On the attack at A Nang Pa area, Vice Chairman of Kachin Independence Council, Lt. General Gunmaw mentioned on his social media page, ““A Nang Pa is not a KIA camp. It’s just a small camp of shop-line where travelers take a break. The KIO Central Committee even did not consider those who had helped and supported successive Burmese governments as enemies. However, now the military council treated the people who came to A Nang Pa as enemies. Though young people are told at every opportunity not to make irreparable mistakes in life, it is the adults who make these mistakes. I am sending prayers for all those who lost their lives in A Nang Pa to get to heaven. I also send prayers to the injured. My condolences to all the family. The sorrow and tears of all will become priceless investments.” Similarly, in the last point of 7 points statement of KIO said, “such a tragic event will be accelerated into a revolutionary force that will push against the dictatorial military council”.

A friend of Ko King who played keyboard and was killed on the night of the attack said, “It’s really sad that a very close childhood innocent friend died. He was a very friendly person, an active participant in youth camp courses in his youth, and  a happy person. Now, he has lost his life because of this devilish terrorist army,” revealed his feeling.

A Myitkyina resident Ko (Sumdu), whose name was changed, also said, “This terrorist army has no humane mind. They mark as enemy to whoever they see and kill. They can’t differentiate enemy they need to fight or ordinary people. They are shooting to kill everyone they see. For Myanmar to get peace, there should not be such kind of army,” revealed his point of view. 

World Kachin Congress (WKC) also issued a statement condemning this brutal attack by terrorist military council. Similarly, ethnic armed northern brotherhood organizations; Arakan Army (AA), Myanmar Nationalities Democratic Alliance Army (MNDAA) and Ta-ang National Liberation Army (TNLA) have expressed sorrow and condemnation. And, National Unity Government (NUG) and Committee Representing People’s Hluttaw (CRPH) issued statement urging international community for immediate action. The embassies of United State and European Countries also issued joint statement expressing sorrow and condemnation on A Nang Pa incident. Neighboring countries China and India keep silent. 

After the attack at A Nang Pa, at the meeting the Third Committee, which is part of the General Assembly held at the United Nations headquarters in New York, U Kyaw Moe Tun, the current Myanmar Ambassador to UN, and Mr. Thomas Andrews, the UN Special Envoy for Human Rights in Myanmar, presented the incident of the Hpakant music festival, which was a massacre by the military council’s air strike. However, the international response seems to be even slower than the speed of a turtle. An international treaty, the Rome Statute of 1998 stipulates that intentional targeting of civilians, purposeful attack knowing that civilians will die or injured; attacking, bombing or shelling towns, villages, house and building without resistance is a war crime. Even though with this stipulation, the international response and action on Burma is obviously nothing.