Myaungmya (Myoungmya) Massacres

   (1942)
   A township in the delta of the Irrawaddy (Ayeyarwady) River, in present-day Irrawaddy (Ayeyarwady) Division, and the site of ethnic violence between the Burman (Bamar) soldiers of the Burma Independence Army (BIA) and the local Karen (Kayin) population, as well as a smaller number of Indians who fought alongside the latter. After the British retreated from Lower Burma in early 1942, many Karens in the Delta region, including those demobilized from British forces, remained loyal to them, and the assassination of a Japanese officer provoked an order from Colonel Suzuki Keiji to the BIA that all the inhabitants of two Karen villages (which had nothing to do with the assassination), including women and children, be massacred. The Karens, who had refused to surrender their British-issued weapons to the BIA, retaliated, and a race war began, with many innocent victims on both the KarenIndian and Burman sides. The worst incidents were in and around Myaungmya, where an estimated 1,800 Karens were killed and 400 Karen villages destroyed. The massacres were stopped only when the regular Japanese army moved in to restore order. Dr. Ba Maw sought reconciliation between the races, establishing a "Karen Central Organisation" to promote this end, but Karen suspicion of the Burmans continued, leading to the 1949 Karen National Union uprising, which had as its goal the creation of an independent Karen state.

Historical Dictionary of Burma (Myanmar). . 2014.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Myoungmya Massacres —    See Myaungmya Massacres …   Historical Dictionary of Burma (Myanmar)

  • Karen National Union —    (KNU)    At the beginning of the 21st century, the oldest and strongest ethnic minority organization opposing the Burman (Bamar) dominated central government. It was established on February 5, 1947, as a successor to the Karen National… …   Historical Dictionary of Burma (Myanmar)

  • Karens —    (Kayins)    One of Burma s major ethnic groups, considered the third largest after the Burmans (Bamars) and Shans (Tai). In the last official census, taken in 1983, they numbered 2,122,825 6.2 percent of Burma s total population at the time… …   Historical Dictionary of Burma (Myanmar)

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