Teknaf border area shakes with deafening noise, intermittent gunfire all night

Maungdaw town of the Rakhine state in Myanmar on the other side of the river Naf. Teknaf is on this side of the borderProthom Alo

Intermittent gunfire was heard throughout Thursday night along the border with Myanmar at the eastern and southern parts of Teknaf upazila in Cox’s Bazar. And two deafening noises shook the ground this side of the border this (Friday) morning, local residents said.

Residents from Saint Martin and Shahporir Dwip in the southern parts of Teknaf said yesterday, Thursday, at around 1:00am till this morning 7:30am, there had been sounds of gunfire intermittently along the Myanmar border. Sometimes the ground shook with loud noise too. This (Friday) morning the people this side of the border woke to the sound of heavy firing. A helicopter was seen flying above Maungdaw in Myanmar, on the other side of the border from Shahporir Dwip. A little while after that, the border area shook with the sound of two deafening explosions.

Resident of Bazarpara in Shahporir Dwip, Amir Hossain, said, “There was sound of gunfire off and on throughout the night in Myanmar. This morning there were two deafening noises that shook the ground this side.”

Saint Martin’s resident Nur Mohammad said, Myanmar s around 20km away from Saint Martin’s. The sound of firing is coming from the distance. There were two extremely loud noises this morning, but no gunfire has been heard after that.

Bangladeshis living along the border in Teknaf are in alarm. Member of ward 9 of Sabrong union in Teknaf, Abdus Salam, told Prothom Alo that the sound of firing was heard off and on throughout the night. The people were alarmed because recently people had been wounded in various areas of Naikhangchhari in Bandarban in the exchange of fire between two fighting groups of Myanmar over their internal conflicts.

The UP member Abdus Salam said that that the Rakhine state was located on the eastern and southern side of the river Naf. The areas from which the sound of gunfire is coming are places around Maungdaw of Myanmar’s Rakhine state. Myanmar’s Border Guard Police (BGP) have a few camps in these areas.

Speaking about this matter, Teknaf 2 BGB commander Lt. Col. Md Mohi Uddin said that members of BGB heard intermittent firing throughout the night due the fighting between two groups in Myanmar centering their internal problems. BGB’s patrol has been reinforced along the border.

Teknaf upazila nirbahi officer (UNO) Md Adnan Chowdhury told Prothom Alo BGB and the Coast Guard patrol has been stepped up due to the outbreak of violence in Myanmar. The people living along the border have been told to remain on alert.

Earlier, early Thursday morning from 4:00am till around 11:30am there was sound of firing off and on from the other side of the border with the southern part of Teknaf. Along with the sound of gunfire, smoke was also visible in certain areas.    

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