Loikaw, June 8

Locals are digging bomb bunkers in schools in Kayah state, where military conflict is raging, to defend the military council’s air attacks and ensure children’s safety while studying, said the volunteers.

The military regime carries out artillery fire and airstrikes not only in battle zones, but also in non-conflict areas every day, making it more difficult to open schools this year.

Kayah State’s national schools and self-help schools have been open since early June, although most are concerned about the military council’s aerial bombardment.

Nowadays, at least ten schools in other villages including Dawtamagyi village tract in eastern Demoso, where fierce fighting is raging on, have been closed.

Ko Tint Zaw Hein, a member of the Little Spring Gurus, told Than Lwin Times that even though self-help schools are being opened for children, they have prepared bomb shelters at the schools.

In addition, basic education schools were damaged due to junta artillery shelling and airstrikes during the fighting in the eastern part of Demoso, and the students are in need of teaching materials.

More than 90 percent of students in Kayah State no longer attend schools run by the military council, and only a few students enroll in schools in Loikaw.

Out of 90% of these students, 80% attend self-help schools in the state, and 5% are far away from school.

In 2023, the military council attempted to retake full control of Kayah State and resumed fighting, preventing self-help schools from opening.

U Banya, the chairman of the Human Rights Council of the Karenni State Consultative Council (KSCC), stated that students in self-help schools have mental and physical issues, and the risk of air attacks becomes worrying.

The military council has carried out a series of bomb attacks on children’s schools, killing 13 people, including children, in an attack on a school in Sagaing Region’s Latyetkon village.

The junta aircraft carried out 31 bombings, and the ground column fired at least 184 times with heavy weapons, destroying three schools in the KNU Brigade 6 area during April and May.

The military council ordered the mandatory opening of schools in the cities under their control and in the cyclone-hit Rakhine State, but the schools in the strongholds of the revolutionary forces are being brutally cracked down.

News- Than Lwin Times

Photo- NUG

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