Myanmar Junta Shelling Kills Two Children in Northern Rakhine

By The Irrawaddy 26 September 2022

Two seven-year-olds were killed by Myanmar junta shelling in Rakhine State where fighting continues between the Arakan Army (AA) and the regime.

On Sunday night, mortar shells were fired from the army headquarters in Kyauktaw on civilian targets without any apparent reason.

Mg Ko Naing was killed in Na Ga Yar village beside the Kaladan River, Rakhine media outlet Narinjara reported.

His house, in which other residents were sheltering, was directly hit by a junta shell.

The boy died three hours later with a back wound, Western News reported quoting a resident.

A male villager, U Kyaw Tun Sein, was injured by the shelling.

A seven-year-old Muslim boy was killed and two of his neighbors wounded when regime forces on the Bangladesh border shelled homes in Buthidaung Township on Friday.

The boy was wounded in his thigh and died a few days later in the township’s hospital, according to Western News.

Around 300 Muslim villagers sought shelter in other villages and Buthidaung town.

In April the regime started the growing administrative dominance of the AA.

Since an informal ceasefire ahead of the November 2020 general election, the United League of Arakan, the AA’s political wing, has expanded its parallel administration in the state, including a judiciary, revenue department and public security offices.

Renewed clashes started in November 2021. Heavy clashes have erupted in the last month in the north of the state in Buthidaung, Maungdaw, Rathedaung and Mrauk-U townships and neighboring Paletwa Township in Chin State.

The junta has reportedly lost more than 36 bases and outposts and suffered numerous deaths.

Last Tuesday, a family of four was wounded when the Kyauktaw command base shelled Na Ga Yar village.

Many villagers have been displaced.

In September, nearly 20 child death caused by regime forces have been reported in Kachin, Shan and Rakhine states and Sagaing Region.

Since the 2021 coup, at least 382 children had been killed or injured and more than 1,400 detained and an estimated 142 tortured, according to a June report by Thomas Andrews, the United Nations special rapporteur on human rights in Myanmar.

On Sunday morning, houses and other buildings were damaged when regime forces shelled the towns of Kyauktaw and Minbya in the state, although no clashes with the AA were reported.

On Sunday morning Battalions 379, 380 and 541 attacked civilian targets in the town and a house and shop were reportedly destroyed.

The town is under a nighttime curfew.

The junta has tightened security in the state and has been detaining Rakhine civilians.