Memorial Service Honored Deceased Legendary Karen General

A memorial service was held for General Bo Mya, the late chairman of the Karen National Union and head of its armed wing, the Karen National Liberation Army and for his oldest son, Saw Nay Kaw. General Bo Mya served the Karen struggle since the 1940’s until his death in 2006.

The worship service was held on January 20 at the village of General Bo Mya’s family on the Thai-Burma border and was attended by ethnic political leaders, friends and family.

Colonel Ner Dah Mya, son of General Bo Mya who is the current head of the Karen National Defense Organization (KNDO) spoke to Karen News about the worship service for his brother and father.

“This memorial is for my deceased father and my oldest brother and at the same time it is also to bring back all our Karen people who are scattered in many places. I am glad to see leaders from many groups with different backgrounds join this memorial worship service.”

The service was attended by Padoh David Tharckapaw, Padoh Saw Ah Toe and Padoh Saw Thaw Thi Bwe from KNU, U Khaing Soe Naing Aung from Arakan Liberation Party, Major Saw Mote Tho from Border Guard Force Batallion #1022, representatives from KNU/KNLA – Peace Council, representative from National League for Democracy – Liberated Area, local Thai officials, religious leaders and other friends and families totaling more than 400 people.

U Khaing Soe Naing Aung, vice chairman of the Arakan Liberation Party spoke to Karen News about his respect for General Bo Mya.

“General Mya was a Karen national leader, but at the same time he was also a leader of all ethnic nationalities. He struggled, not just for Karen people, but for all ethnic nationalities through his leadership role in forming alliances. The political course that he laid down, are still alive in the current struggle [for equality]. I come to this service to honor and pay him respect.”

The worship service included a brief biography of General Bo Mya followed by singing gospel songs followed by a lunch reception.

Every year, surviving family members hold a memorial worship service for General Bo Mya, who passed away in 2006 and his oldest son, Saw Nay Kaw Mya, a former battalion commander of KNLA battalion #202 who died in 2008.

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