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Myanmar Police Force
မြန်မာနိုင်ငံ ရဲတပ်ဖွဲ့
Coat of arms
Coat of arms
Agency overview
Formed1964; 59 years ago (1964)
Preceding agency
Employees93,000 (2012)[1]
Jurisdictional structure
Operations jurisdictionMyanmar
Legal jurisdictionMyanmar
General nature
Operational structure
Elected officer responsible
Agency executive
  • Major General Zin Min Htet, Chief of Police[2]
Parent agencyMinistry of Home Affairs
Child agencies
  • State and Division Police
  • Special Forces
  • Training Department
  • Reserve Units
  • Combat Police Battalions
  • Anti-Narcotics Task Force
Official website

The Myanmar Police Force (Burmese: မြန်မာနိုင်ငံ ရဲတပ်ဖွဲ့), formerly the People's Police Force (ပြည်သူ့ရဲတပ်ဖွဲ့), is the law enforcement agency of Myanmar. It was established in 1964 as an independent department under the Ministry of Home Affairs.


The Police Force in Myanmar have an extensive history; the police force also includes local police and regional police in different jurisdictions.

British rule in Myanmar

The Indian Imperial Police was the primary law enforcement in Burma until 1937, when it was split from British India.

In 1872 the third mayor of Mergui District, Sir Ashly Din (1870–1875) assigned the first police officer to be stationed at Maliwan, a village 24 miles north of current Victoria Point.

Perhaps the most famous policeman in Burma from this period is the author George Orwell, who in 1922 joined the Indian Imperial Police in Burma.

Post-independence (1948–present)

Myanmar police officers blocking protesters in Bahan Township, Yangon.
Myanmar police officers blocking protesters in Bahan Township, Yangon.

On 16 March 1988 following the killing of two students during the pro-democracy demonstrations, students marching on Prome Road were confronted near Inya Lake by the Lon Htein security force riot police and many beaten to death or drowned.

The national police are made up of several smaller entities, including


The current director general of Myanmar Police Force is Major General Zin Min Htet with its headquarters in Naypyidaw. Its command structure is based on established civil jurisdictions. Under the command of police headquarters, state and region police forces have been established in respective territories of states and divisions with headquarters in their capital cities.[3]

State and division police forces

There are 14 state and divisional police forces and three additional state/division police forces commanded by police brigadiers or colonels. Their jurisdictions are divided according to the Civil Administration. The states and divisions, additional states have the same status.

Each state and divisional police force consist of four components.

In previous time, the district police forces are classified into two classes depending on the area, population and development, namely A and B Class. Commanders of the A Class District Police Forces are police lieutenant colonels, and B Classes are police majors, but there is no classification and all districts assigned with lieutenant colonel. Commanders of township police forces are police majors, and police station officers are police captains.

Special Departments

There are four Special Departments, in which the first ten departments are headed by the police brigadier generals and the remaining two are by police colonels.

Training Centres

There are three main Training Centers, one Central Training Institute of Myanmar Police Force and Three Police Training Depots. The State and Divisional Police Forces have their own training centres for refresher courses and Junior Leader (NCO) Courses.

Bachelor's degree holders from Distance Learning University were disqualified from sitting the SIP exam. Thus vast numbers of Bachelor holding police personal were concerned for their future.

Course Name Duration
Deputy Superintendent Cadet Course 50 weeks
Sub-Inspector Cadet Course 6 weeks
Surveillance Officer Course 6 weeks
Investigation Officer Course 6 weeks
Police Station Officer Course 8 weeks
Staff Officer Course 6 weeks
Township Police Commander Course 8 weeks
District Police Commander Course 12 weeks

No. 1 Police Training Depot

The No.1 Police Training Depot is commanded by a Police Lieutenant Colonel and undertakes:

Course Name Duration
Basic Training Course for Lance Corporal and Corporal 4 weeks
Warrant Officer and Police Sergeants Course 12 Weeks
Basic Training Course for Constables 24 weeks
Clerical Training 4 weeks
Instructor Renewal Course 4 weeks

No. 2 Police Training Depot

The No.2 Police Training Depot is also commanded by a Police Lieutenant Colonel, and undertakes only Basic Training Course for Constables, which normally takes around 6 months to complete.

Course Name Duration
Basic Training Course for Constables 6 Months

Taung Lay Lone Police Training Depot

The Taung Lay Lone Police Training Depot is commanded by a Police Lieutenant Colonel and undertakes:

Course Name Duration
Basic Training Course for lance corporal and Corporal 4 weeks
Warrant Officer and Police Sergeants Course 12 Weeks
Basic Training Course for Constables 6 Months

Combat Police Battalions (SWAT)

There are sixteen Police Battalions to carry out general security duties under the command of Battalion Control Command. The Battalion Commandants are Police Lieutenant Colonels. As the populace of the cities including Yangon and Mandalay have been increased day after day, problems on social, economy and politics are risen up that could lead to emergence of civil unrest and sabotage. It is necessary to prevent from destruction and harassment, VIP and project factories and workshops, security of diplomats and their embassies. Seven of these Police Battalions are situated in the Yangon Divisional areas and two in Mandalay and three in Arakan, one in Sagaing, one in Mon State, one in Pegu, one in Prome.

These specially-trained and combat capable battalions are formed with personnel from former Riot Security Police, better known as "Lon Htein" Units. Each battalion consists of 500+ personnel and these battalions are supported by two support battalions, which include signal and medical units. These battalions structure are similar to that of Army's Light Infantry Battalions and they are subordinate to their respective Regional Military Commands.[1]

Anti-Narcotic Task Forces

26 special anti-narcotic task forces have been established under the direction of the Central Committee for Drug Abuse Control.

Weapons and equipment

Myanmar Police Force uses wide range of weapons and ammunitions, ranging from Second World War vintage to modern sophisticated weapons. Most of the weapons are either seized from ethnic wars and narco-insurgents or locally produced copies of the G3 and other weapons phased out of their army.


Sub machine gun


Machine gun

Sniper rifle

Non-Lethal Weapons


Cars and Trucks

Armoured vehicles

Photo Model Type Quantity Origin Notes
Armoured vehicle/Armoured personnel carrier
ZFB-05 Armoured personnel carrier 10[4]  China Received by 2011, they were transferred to police from Myanmar Army.[4]
Sinotruk Myanmar.jpg
Sinotruk HOWO Water cannon truck unknown  China One of the most widely use against protesters in February 2021 Myanmar.

Coastal Patrol Craft

Class Builder Serial Number Year Entered Service Armament Note
PGM class  Myanmar 331
2012 machine guns

River Patrol Boat

Class Builder Serial Number Year Entered Service Armament Note
PCE class  Myanmar,  China 171
2013 machine guns

Rank structure and insignia

Commissioned officers

Rank group General/flag officers Senior officers Junior officers Officer cadet
Myanmar Police Force
Police General Insignia.png
Lt General Insignia.png
Major General Insignia.png
Brigadier General Insignia.png
Colonel Insignia MM.png
Lt Colonel Insignia.png
Major Insignia.png
Captain Insignia.png
Lieutenant Insignia.png
2nd Lieutenant Insignia.png
Cadet Insignia.png
raaibauilaʻ khayupaʻ krīʺ
dautaiya raaibauilaʻ khayupaʻ krīʺ
raaibauilaʻ khayupaʻ
raaimahūʺ khayupaʻ
raaimahūʺ karī
dautaiya raaimahūʺ karī
dautaiya raaimahūʺ
raai ’aupaʻ
dautaiya raai ’aupaʻ
dautaiya raai ’aupaʻ laoṅaʻʺ

Enlisted ranks

Rank group Senior NCOs Junior NCOs Enlisted
Myanmar Police Force
Police OR-8.svg
Police Sergeant MPF.svg
Police Corporal MPF.svg
Police Lance Corporal MPF.svg
No insignia No insignia
Raai ’araā khaṃ bauilaʻ
Raai tapaʻ karpaʻ krīʺ
Raai tapaʻ karpaʻ
Dautaiya tapaʻ karpaʻ
Raai tapaʻ saāʺ
Raai tapaʻ saāʺ sacaʻ

See also



  1. ^ a b Selth 2012, p. 59.
  2. ^ "Deputy Minister appointed and concurrently assigned to the duties of Chief of Myanmar Police Force".
  3. ^ "Myanmar Police Force". ASEANPOL. Retrieved 22 April 2022.
  4. ^ a b "Trade Registers". Retrieved 1 January 2015.



  • Selth, Andrew (2002). Burma's Armed Forces: Power Without Glory. Norwalk, CT: EastBridge. ISBN 1891936190.

Journal articles