The funeral of veteran Karen revolutionary leader Col. Saw Ye Din (photo: KIC)

Over 3,000 People Attend Funeral of Former KNLA Brig. 1 Operation Commander

Over 3,000 people attended the funeral of veteran Karen revolutionary leader in Myit Kyoe Village of Bilin Township, Mon State on February 27.

Col. Saw Ye Din, former operations commander of the KNLA Brigade 1 under the Karen National Union (KNU), passed away at the age of 78 on February 24.

The KNLA Brigade 1’s commander Brig-Gen Saw Kyaw Lin, soldiers and officials from National League for Democracy, Karen Youth Organization (KYO), Karen Women’s Organization (KWO), and All Burma Students’ Democractic Front (ABSDF) were present at the funeral. In attedance of the Col. Saw Ye Din’s funeral, there were also monks, relatives, friends and local residents.

“Thousands of people [including] his colleagues and friends came to pay their respect on his last journey due to his right stand on the revolution and nationalism,” said Maj Saw Aung Shwe, the son of Col. Saw Ye Din and Deputy Commander of Battalion 2 under the KNLA Brigade 1.

Maj Saw Aung Shwe urged the new generation of youths to take his mindset, sacrifices, and action on the revolution as an epitome and take part in the revolutionary journey, which has not ended yet.

The deceased Col Saw Ye Din was arrested by the Tatmadaw in 1959. He was released under amnesty during the KNU Brigade-5 (now Brigade 1) ceasefire era after serving one year and six months in Thaton Prison.

“He joined hands with us during the entire resistance. I feel sad for losing a comrade who sacrificed for the resistance until his death. I want to express my condolence to the family,” said Brig-Gen. Saw Kyaw Lin, Commander of the KNLA Brigade 1.

Col. Saw Ye Din became the operations commander (strategic commander) in 1983 after receiving progressive promotions in the army. His mother organization, the KNU, allowed his resignation due to old age in 2009 but his position remained in the KNLA and he served as an adviser for Brigade 1 until his death.

Col. Saw Ye Din was born to father, Saw Aye Maung, and mother, Naw Mu Bi in U Daung Village of Bilin Township, Mon State in 1939. He joined the Karen National Union (KNU), in 1954. He married Naw Mu Chaw from Pa Yar Yaw (Myit Kyoe) Village of Bilin Township in 1958 and had eight children.

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