The junta carried out a raid in search of hidden weapons
04/12/2022 Myanmar (International Christian Concern)– International Christian Concern (ICC) has learned that on April 8, dozens of Burma Army (Tatmadaw) soldiers raided a Catholic compound in Mandalay, Myanmar, looking for “hidden weapons”.
About 40 soldiers forced their way into the Cathedral of the Sacred Heart during preparations for Lent in the afternoon, holding off dozens of worshipers for hours, including Archbishop Marco Tin Win.
Asia News reports that junta soldiers burst in and demanded to know where the gold, money and weapons were hidden, preventing anyone from fleeing. A source revealed to UCA News, “They claimed to have been informed that weapons were hidden in the center of the clergy.
When Father Dominic Jyo Du, vicar general of the archdiocese, tried to explain that the only money they had was donations collected for the poor, he too was pushed into the cathedral. Archbishop Marco Tin Win, who was in a different building at the time of the raid, was taken to the cathedral and ordered to sit with the others.
The soldiers left after nearly three hours when they found no weapons. Subsequently, the local Catholic community in the city’s five parishes was alerted and many expressed concern over the raid.
“We were relieved that no one was injured or arrested, and we were able to resume our church services,” a Way of the Cross parishioner shared with UCA News.
“The Tatmadaw’s continued attacks on churches and religious leaders must not be ignored by the international community. The junta’s soldiers not only intimidate Christians, but they often occupy, desecrate and loot the country’s churches. It is common for them to target religious clergy and detain them as well. The Tatmadaw must be held accountable for all the crimes it has committed,” said Gina Goh, ICC Regional Director for Southeast Asia.
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