Junta tightens checks, arrests travelers on Namti- La War road section

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Caption - Ma Ran Ka Htaung checkpoint (Old photo)

Locals and travelers report that the military council is carrying out arrests and inspections at the checkpoint on the road between Namti in Mogaung Township and La War in Hpakant Township, Kachin State.

Amid the tightened inspections, at least six youths have been arrested at the Ma Ran Ka Htaung checkpoint on the road between Namti and La War, according to locals and travelers.

One traveler said, “There were also arrests on 19 February. Our driver said that three people were arrested that day. He also said that three days earlier, three or four people were arrested. They were arrested at the Ma Ran Ka Htaung checkpoint. The military council tightened checks from 11 or 12 February. They not only check the NRCs but ask detailed questions. They ask more questions to the boys and men.”

According to reports, three young travelers were arrested by military council soldiers at the Ma Ran Ka Htaung checkpoint, but it is not yet known who they are or why they were arrested.

In a similar case, four young men were also arrested at the checkpoint on 16 February, which was confirmed by a person close to local drivers.

Officials from the People’s Defense Forces (PDF) operating in the area said that the latest situation of the four youths is still unknown.

“Both the junta and Shanni forces are present in the area. Militias are also stationed there. Some checkpoints are jointly manned by them, at others only by junta soldiers. Lately, they have tightened inspections considerably,” said a PDF official.

The PDF official went on to say that the military junta only allows holders of NRCs registered in Kachin State to travel on to Kachin State.

“They check the NRCs of those traveling to Kahin State. They allow 1/ NRC holders to proceed after asking some questions. Other NRC holders are mostly arrested. Some have to pay hundreds of thousands of kyats, others are simply arrested. Some are forced to turn back from the checkpoint. They are doing whatever they want,” said the PDF official.

Local bus drivers say such inspections have been tightened since the military service law was announced.

In addition, the military council forces, Shanni forces and other militias also check passenger buses at the checkpoints on the road between Hpakant and Myitkyina, and only allow those who can show a letter of recommendation about their residence in Hpakant to continue their journey, according to the bus drivers.

Also on 16 February, the military council soldiers forced travelers at the Indaw checkpoint to hold their NRCs and walk, according to a statement by Indaw Revolution – IR.

Sent by NMG.

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