Catholic Church Destroyed in Myanmar Attack and 2 other Christian Churches Damaged by the Military

On August 12th, another Catholic Church was destroyed in Myanmar (Burma).
“Mary Mother of Mercy”, the Catholic church from Htee Thaw Ku village, Kayah State, was targeted in the aerial bombing and houses from the village were also destroyed in the deliberate shelling by the Burmese military. 
Two Baptist churches in Chin state, another predominantly Christian region, were also damaged as a result of the airstrikes, according to local sources and a rights group. In total, three churches have been damaged in airstrikes by the Myanmar military in a predominantly Christian region in the civil war-hit nation.
They also burnt down the parish church from a nearby village last year.
Dozens of Catholic churches around the country have been deliberately attacked and destroyed, within the past two years alone, by the Burmese military.
Seven people were injured when residential areas were targeted in Ramtho village and four homes perished in Khuafo village, which was earlier bombed on March 30 resulting in the death of ten civilians, said the Chin Human Rights Organization (CHRO).
Myanmar’s military has stepped up attacks on rebel forces in Christian majority areas of Kayah, Chin, Kachin and Karen states, while its troops also burned several villages in the Bamar-heartland of Sagaing and Magwe regions where the army faces stiff resistance from armed rebel groups.
Military dictator General Min Aung Hlaing has again extended the state of emergency imposed since the coup two-and-a-half years ago. He has also postponed the promised elections.
The CHRO said the largest and oldest Baptist church in Hakah, the capital city of Chin state, came under attack on Aug. 14, damaging a residential property.
At least 100 religious sites, including 55 Christian buildings, have been destroyed since the February 2021 coup by the army in the Southeast Nation, according to rights groups.
At least ten churches have been hit in Loikaw diocese, where several parishes have been abandoned after thousands fled since the conflict between military and rebel forces erupted in May 2021.
The return of the military junta in February 2021 after a brief civilian rule by the elected government of Nobel Peace winner Aung San Suu Kyi has caused armed attacks by ethnic rebel groups.
“Deliberately bombing civilian targets and protected sites such as places of worship, then actively blocking medical aid from reaching injured civilians constitute grave breaches of the Geneva Convention governing the conduct of war,” CHRO tweeted on Aug.13.
The Independent Investigative Mechanism for Myanmar (IIMM) in a report on Aug. 8 said there is “strong evidence indicating that serious international crimes are being inflicted upon the people of Myanmar, including mass executions, torture and the deliberate bombing of civilian targets, including houses of worship.”
“Our evidence points to a dramatic increase in war crimes and crimes against humanity,” said Nicholas Koumjian, head of the IIMM.
Christians compose 6 percent of Myanmar’s population of 54 million, with the majority being Buddhists.
Sources: CHRO - UCAN News and Local Priest