YANGON: Myanmar’s state media warned on Friday that insurgents and political opportunists were trying to disrupt the first elections in 20 years, after a small blast at a provincial government building.
A hand-made TNT time bomb exploded outside a Ward Peace and Development Council Office in Bago region, about 80 kilometres outside of Yangon, the New Light of Myanmar newspaper said. Nobody was hurt by the explosion, which shattered windows and left a hole in a concrete wall, according to the junta mouthpiece, which reported there were separate attempts to attack a power pylon and wooden overpass last month.
“It is learnt that they are the works of insurgents, destructive elements and political opportunists who are trying to ramp up instigation and destructive acts with the aim of disrupting the upcoming multi-party democracy election following unrest and violence,” the English-language newspaper said. The ward offices are also being used by the local election commission.
The secretive country is preparing for November 7 polls that critics have dismissed as a sham due to the exclusion of opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi because she is a serving prisoner. Myanmar has been hit by several bomb blasts in recent years, which the junta has blamed on armed exile groups or ethnic rebels.
A series of explosions on April 15 left 10 people dead and about 170 wounded at a festival—the worst attack in five years in Yangon. Last month two young men were shot dead in a quarrel with troops in Bago region. The authorities played down the incident as just a drunken brawl and not a fight between the army and the public. agencies