Rangers Brave Burma Army Bombs and Bullets to Bring Life Saving Care: Video and Compilation Report
22 January 2024
Northern Karen State, Burma
“Be strong, be strong buddy, we are with you. We Rangers are with you!” A Ranger reassured a wounded soldier while helping carry him off the front line. Later, jet bombers rumbled overhead as Ranger medics lay flat under brush, holding onto patients, giving life-saving medical care to them despite Burma Army aircraft hunting them overhead. “We lie down on the ground and hold the wounded, because if we are alive or dead, [at least] we will be together,” said Saw Hser Htoo, Free Burma Ranger (FBR) Medic. Evacuating villagers under Burma Army attacks, bringing humanitarian relief, loving on displaced children, and much more is captured in the video made by our own FBR ethnic team as they documented first-hand their mission to northern Karen State regions in Burma through the month of July 2023.
This regional FBR team operating in northern Karen State, Burma, is made up of both men and women from different backgrounds who are united together bringing help, hope, and love to those oppressed and caught in conflict. Throughout 2023, this team has braved Burma Army jet bombings, helicopter strafing, shelling, rainy-season perils in the jungle, and more to reach internally displaced people (IDPs) caught in the crossfire of war and isolated from humanitarian aid. To read the team’s mission reports from this past year, please see the links below.
April 2023: Helping Where We Can: A Karen State Mission
July 2023: Burma Army Murderous Threats and Attacks Displace Hundreds From Their Homes
Most recently, during September 2023, the team visited three IDP sites where 1,827 villagers from different areas had fled Burma Army mortaring of their villages. They have not returned home either because of ongoing fighting in the area or because the Burma Army has laid landmines around their villages. The team was able to provide a total of 300 villagers with medical care and encourage 389 children and teachers through a Good Life Club Program. The team visited a school and three clinics recently opened and supported by the National Unity Government. There are still great needs for resourcing both the clinics and school. The team also collected many accounts of human rights abuses conducted by the Burma Army throughout the year in this area. Some of these are listed below:
On 13 June 2022, in Than Tapin Township, Taung Ngu District, Karen State: 30-year-old Ko Min, a resident of Gua Aai Village, was illegally arrested by the Burma Army when he went to collect rice in the forest. His friends and family, including his wife and two children, still cannot contact him.
On 18 February 2023, Myo MIn Htike, from Mih Kyawng Khaung Village, and Ko Zaw Htike, from Bone Ma Tee, were killed by the Burma Army.
On 30 April 2023, Ma Moey Lu, a resident of Ta Yet Tan Village and U Lwin, from Bone Ma Tee, were killed when the Burma Army fired into their village.
On 2 May 2023, four villagers from Kywe Lan, Ye Soe Aung, Suh Hlaing Aye, Ma Lae Lae Khaing, Maung Hten Win, were killed by a Burma Army air strike. On the same date, Ko Htae Win, from Hlae Lan Ku, was arrested and killed by the Burma Army.
On 7 June 2023, there was a battle between combined Karen National Union (KNU) and People’s Defense Force (PDF) and the Burma Army (IB 15/Battalion 306, 84/LIB 350). The Burma Army mortared the Hlae Lan Ku Village, destroying 10 houses, 1 health care center, and cow stables. Resident Daw Khin Myint’s house was also burned down.
On 17 August 2023, civilians U Maung Htwe, Ko Tant Zaw, and Daw Tayoke Mah were killed by Burma Army heavy weapons explosion.
Please pray for all of the different regional teams around Burma, the millions of IDPs, and all the needs they face.
Thanks and God bless you,
Free Burma Rangers