Yangon bomb accused tells court he faced death threats

A man charged with allegedly carrying out bombings in Yangon in October 2013 has told a court he was told he would be killed if he didn’t plant the devices.

Saw Myint Lwin is accused of placing bombs at Western Park Ruby restaurant in Ahlone township and Traders Hotel on Sule Pagoda Road. While the bomb in the restaurant was safely defused, an American woman staying at Traders Hotel was injured when the device detonated in her bathroom on October 14.

The Yangon attacks were part of a string of bombings that killed three people and injured 10 between October 11 and 17.

Saw Myint Lwin was arrested on December 3. In a statement read out in court in late August, he said Lieutenant Saw Nay Toe from the Karen National Liberation Army and Kachin Independence Army had ordered him to plant the bombs and provided money to cover the costs. He said Lt Saw Nay Toe had threatened to kill him if he did not “fulfill his duty”.

The Karen National Union, the political wing of the KNLA, has denied any involvement in the attacks but admitted that Saw Nay Toe was at one time a member.

Saw Myint Lwin faces a possible life sentence if convicted.


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