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Plunder and Money Extortion from Rohingyas by Myanmar’s SaYaPha

By MYARF ׀ Rohingya Vision TV

Maungdaw, Arakan State — Myanmar’s Defense Security Agency known as SaYaPha has been continually plundering local Rohingya sole traders in northern Maungdaw Township, while they also extort money from the innocent people in the region, according to the reliable sources.

It has been learnt that, especially, the SaYaPha based in Kyein Chaung village also called Bawli Bazaar is responsible for the plunders and other illegal activities such as arbitrary arrests for ransom taking place nowadays around the region.

“Mohammed Alam (son of) Sharif Hussein is a poor man from Ye Dwin Pyin village, northern Maungdaw. He is a sole trader of chicken eggs and earns his income from buying and selling the eggs. While he was on his way from Ye Dwin Pyin village to Kyein Chaung market to sell his chicken eggs worth Kyat 650,000 net on Monday, the commander of the SaYaPha detachment (တပ္ဆြယ္မွဴး) in the village and other two newly posted SaYaPha military personnel seized and plundered the eggs.

After seizing the eggs, the detachment commander went to the village market to sell the eggs to a Rohingya grocery store. When the owner of the store, U Nasser (son of) Abdul Khair, came to know that the eggs that the commander was trying to sell were seized from a poor man, he refused to buy them. Thus, angered by the refusal, the commander arrested the grocery store owner asking ‘how can you not buy the eggs I am selling you?”

After some time, they released him from their custody extorting Kyat 100,000” said an eyewitness asking not to be identified.

The other recent cases of the SaYaPha’s plunders and money extortions have been reported by the locals as mentioned below.

  • “The shops that got burned down at Kyeing Chaung market in 2013 have been under reconstruction. Therefore, a Rohingya villager named Siraz @ Napaung (son of) Nurul Amin was guarding the place on last Saturday night. While he fell asleep, the SaYaPha Forces stole and took away his Huowoie Mobile Phone with (Myanmar Sim Card in it) found by his pillow. Then, the SaYaPha extorted Kyat 170,000 from him to return the phone.
  • Similarly, U Khaiser, a driver of a bus owned by U Rafique was sleeping on his bus at the night. The SaYaPha detachment commander kicked the door of the bus and opened it by force. Then, the commander said he would need to search the bus. Although no illegal thing was found, the commander consfiscated his GSM Phone (with the Myanmar Sim Card inside). Again, the commander extorted Kyat 300,000 to return the phone to him.
  • Mv Laalu (son of) Sultan, 65, a religious scholar hails from Ridaa hamlet of Aung Sit Pyin village tract came to Kyein Chaung market for shopping around 11:00 AM on December 21. While he was around the market, a SaYaPha officer from the Kyeing Chaung office arrived at the market and forcibly took him to the office for no reason at all.

Then, the SaYaPha detained him arbitrarily accusing him of involving in human trafficking and demanded Kyat 2 Million Ransom for his release. Since the scholar was unable to fulfill the ransom demand, he was brutally tortured by the SaYaPha.

The religious scholar eventually had to pay Kyat 800,000 to the SaYaPha as he was unable to bear up the tortures anymore. And after the extortion, the SaYaPha released him around 6:00 PM of the day.”

The SaYaPha has replaced the former notorious MI (Military Intelligence) after its abolishment in 2004. Since then, it has involved in high profile money extortions, tortures of Rohingyas and chasing them out of the country.

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