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8 September 2022

Resurgence of violence in Moe Bye

Pekon Township

Moe Bye town


Violence in Moe Bye

Moe Bye (မိုးဗြဲမြို့) has been a site of frequent clashes since the February 2021 Coup. Following the deaths of up to 20 Myanmar military troops in nearby Warisu Palai village (ဝါရီဆူးပလိုင်), south Shan state (ရှမ်းပြည်နယ်), on the 8 September 2022, the Myanmar military launched an attack on Moe Bye town. 

Between the 8-16 September, clashes between the Myanmar military and local defence forces caused widespread destruction across the town. By the time the military temporarily withdrew on 12 September 2022, over 100 buildings were reportedly destroyed, up to 60 Myanmar military soldiers killed and 3 local defence fighters killed, alongside several civilian casualties. 

Myanmar Witness verified footage showing the damage to civilian properties, the library, the market and sites of worship. Additionally, Myanmar Witness has investigated claims of both civilian and military casualties and verified the presence of Chinese made K-8 fighter jets in the area.

Heavy fighting near the Mary Mother of God church and the death of a child were reported on 9 September 2022. Myanmar Witness was unable to verify the time or location of the child’s death; however, multiple pieces of user-generated content were identified showing the child at a medical facility operated by the Moe Bye People's Defence Force Rescue Team.

On the 16 September, the Mwedaw Pagoda (မွေတော်ဘုရား), which was housing people sheltering from the fighting, was allegedly hit with heavy artillery. Myanmar Witness was able to geolocate imagery showing multiple sites of impact, as well as blood stains. Four people, including two minors were reportedly killed. According to a member of the rescue team quoted by Myanmar Now, the two killed minors were sisters aged 7 and 10.

To learn more, read the Myanmar Witness report.

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