Atrocities, opposition and response
In terms of atrocities committed by Japanese Imperial Forces, such as the ‘Rape of Nanjing,’ sook ching in Singapore, or the torturous Thai-Burma Death Railway, wartime Borneo had the infamous ‘Sandakan Death March’ and a series of clandestine killings in the southern and western parts of the island. While Allied soldiers, mainly Australians, were the victims of the former episode, local inhabitants (native and Chinese) including the Pontianak sultans and former colonial Dutch officials were killed in the latter. During the invasion and early occupation period there were reported incidences of massacres and ‘murders’ committed by the Imperial Japanese Army (IJA). The ‘Kinabalu Uprising’ of October 1943 in IJA-controlled Northern Borneo was the only serious challenge to the occupation forces, it was however ruthlessly suppressed.