Chin Teenager Killed by Myanmar Junta Landmine

By The Irrawaddy 25 June 2021

An ethnically Chin teenager was killed by a landmine near the mountainous town of Mindat, Chin State, on Thursday, according to the Mindat Emergency Response Team (MERT).

Salai Shae Om, 13, triggered a junta landmine near Shat village in northern Mindat Township on Thursday afternoon while going to farm with his family.

Junta troops reportedly planted landmines near the village after firefights with Mindat’s People Defense Force caused heavy casualties for the security forces on June 6.

“The boy died on the spot,” a MERT member told The Irrawaddy on Friday.

Three other young people were killed by junta landmines near Bukun village in late May after firefights with Mindat’s civilian resistance, according to villagers.

Mindat has seen a series of intense shootouts between junta troops and the resistance since an April ceasefire broke down on May 12.

Since the military regime raided the mountaintop town on May 15, about 90 percent of Mindat’s population of 25,000 have fled their homes. Around 20,000 civilians are sheltering in about 80 villages near Mindat.

Several shootouts have occurred at villages since mid-May when junta troops attempted to raid villages to hunt down civilian resistance fighters who fled Mindat.

Both sides agreed a 14-day ceasefire on June 19.

However, only about 30 percent of those displaced have returned to their homes in Mindat since the ceasefire was agreed.

“During the ceasefire, the regime should remove its landmines and inform people about their locations,” the MERT official said.

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