Phadu Tun Aung|DMG
25 October, Sittwe
The sister of the Arakan Army (AA) Chief Maj-Gen Twan Mrat Naing has been detained along with her husband in connection with the seizure of explosive devices in Mandalay, U Zaw Htay, Spokesperson of the State Counsellor’s Office said during a press conference held at the Presidential Palace in Nay Pyi Taw on 25 October.
The younger sister of the AA chief Ma Moe Hnin Phyu and her husband Ko Kyaw Naing were arrested at the Yangon International Airport after they returned from Chiang Mai, Thailand on 18 October and are currently being questioned.
“As far as I know, they were apprehended on suspicion of having links to the seizure of explosive devices in Mandalay,” U Zaw Htay said.
Some officials from the Myanmar Police Force will go to Thailand tomorrow to cooperate with their Thai counterparts over the case as the Royal Thai Police is believed to keep some data concerning the detainees, the government spokesperson added.
Ko Kyaw Naing and his four-year old daughter were arrested at the Yangon International Airport when they came back home from Thailand. Ma Moe Hnin Phyu who was waiting at the airport to pick up her husband and daughter was also nabbed by the police for questioning. The daughter of the detainees was later sent by the police to stay with relatives in Yangon, according to the family members.
According to some local media outlets, Ko Kyaw Naing has been charged under the Counter-Terrorism Law.
Six people were caught with illegal explosive devices in a house raid in Chan Mya Thazi Township, Mandalay on 10 September. The police charged six suspects with violating the Counter-Terrorism Law, saying the suspects are allegedly members and supporters of the AA.
Ko Aung Mrat Kyaw, younger brother of the AA Chief Maj-Gen Twan Mrat Naing was also detained by the Singaporean Government on 10 July on suspicion of fundraising for the ethnic armed group of AA. He was later arrested by Myanmar authorities at the Yangon International Airport upon deportation from Singapore and was charged under the Counter-Terrorism Law.
According to the Rakhine Ethnic Congress (REC), the Tatmadaw has so far arrested 217 people on suspicion of having ties to the Arakan Army (AA).