A Catholic priest who was earlier reported nabbed by Myanmar’s military junta soldiers was released on Tuesday, April 19, said a report on Radio Veritas Asia.
Father Richard Nay Zaw Aung was arrested in the village of Shar Khe on April 10 and was sent to the Kyone Pyaw Police Checkpoint.
On the same day, security personnel also arrested Father Firmin aka Man Saybat and Father Richard of the St. Joseph’s Catholic Church in the village of Shar Khel in the Diocese of Pathein.
A religious brother, a catechist, three young people, and 13 other lay Catholics were also arrested, according to the Veritas report.
All, except for Father Richard, were released on the same day.
The news site Myanmar Now said the priest was arrested for his failure to submit a list of guests to the authorities.
Meanwhile, a United Nations report early this week said one out of every 100 citizens of Myanmar became displaced by conflict in the nearly 15 months since the military junta seized power.
The UN report noted that at least 912,700 people have already been displaced, pushing the country ever closer to the brink of a humanitarian crisis.
In a statement on Tuesday, the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs said that 566,100 people — or more than 1% of Myanmar’s population of around 55 million — were made refugees since the Feb 1, 2021, coup.
Some 346,000 people were already identified as internally displaced persons prior to the military takeover.
The agency said that for the first time, displacement in the northwest, where the military is carrying out a scorched earth campaign in Chin state and the regions of Sagaing and Magway, exceeded 300,000 people.
Eastern Myanmar, which includes the embattled states of Shan, Kayah, and Kayin, also saw substantial displacement since the coup.
Junta troops killed at least 1,600 people, including some 100 children, since the coup, the UN office said. Many of the victims died in military airstrikes, artillery strikes or as the result of triggering landmines. – with a report from Radio Free Asia