Army Retaliates For Attacks On Police Stations

Network Media Group

January 5, 2019

The Myanmar Army uses excessive force in response to attacks on police outposts in Rakhine State.

Fighting has escalated between Myanmar Army and Arakan Army after the armed group launched attacks on four police outposts at the same time, killing at least nine security personnel in restive Rakhine State.

“They have sent reinforcement troops into the battlefield,” said Khaing Thukha, AA’s information department in-charge.

Most of the reinforcements have been dispatched to Buthidaung and Rathaydaung townships Khaing Thukha said. Myanmar soldiers have also been sent to Ponna-Kyun and Kyauktaw townships in Rakhine State and Paletwa township in Chin State.

“Burma army is shelling us with heavy artillery. They also use helicopter gunships to attack us. Ka Htee La village was already burned down,” Khaing Thukha said.

The village was home for ethnic Mro (Myo), recognized as a member of the Chin people.

Over two thousand people have been displaced by fighting between AA and the Myanmar Army since late November.

Community based groups have expressed difficulties providing aid after government forces restricted activities by groups trying to help some of the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) camps.

Ko Nge Oo Maung, from Poe-Shwe-Pyin Social Alliance Association, told Network Media Group the army hasn’t allowed any food to reach Thalu Chaung and Nga Sayai Thyai IDP camps.

The Northern Military Alliance, which AA is a member of, and the government’s Peace Commission will meet in mid-January. The last meeting took place in December.

Even though the government wants to meet with AA and other groups to discuss peace, their excessive military operations against the armed group in Rakhine State is “a barrier in building mutual trust and peace” Khaing Thukha said.

Last month, the Myanmar Army launched an four-month long unilateral ceasefire, promising to suspend its military campaigns in nearly all of the combat areas of the country, excluding Rakhine State.

“Even though they declared to stop military activities in 5 military command regions, it doesn’t include the western military region where AA and government forces are fighting. It means they will stop military operation in some areas and attack us in the western region,” said an official for AA.