Burmese Army Senior Officer Accused of Killing Two Soldiers
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Burmese Army Senior Officer Accused of Killing Two Soldiers

By Min Lwin Monday, January 7, 2008


The commanding officer of the Burmese Army’s Light Infantry Battalion 606, based in Badadchaung, Naypyidaw, and his intelligence officer have been arrested and charged with killing a corporal and a private, according to a source close to Naypyidaw Military Command.

The source identified the arrested CO as Lt-Col Zaw Lwin. His intelligence officer, a second lieutenant, was not named.

The two are reportedly charged with torturing the corporal and the private because they failed to pay bribes expected from enlisted men. Their victims’ bodies were found buried after the families of the two men reported them missing. 

Burmese army soldiers commonly augment their low pay by running sideline businesses, paying bribes to their commanding officers. The two victims had reportedly been dealing in timber and owed their commanding officer
500,000 kyat (US $384).

A private in the Burmese Army earns around 21,000 kyat ($16) a month and a warrant officer first-class about 50,000 kyat ($40). Apart from their regular duty hours, unmarried men are required to perform housekeeping work for officers and their families.

Discipline is tough, and soldiers complain frequently that they are beaten by their superior officers.

In 2005, the adjutant of 376 Light Infantry Battalion 376 in Kyaktaw, Arankan State was allegedly killed by his commanding officer, Lt-Col Aung Zaw Myo, for failing to pay bribes.

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