A child flees the paddy field as the heavy firing starts rocking the border area.
Prothom Alo

Myanmar military and Arakan Army have been fighting fiercely for a month in Walidong hill inside Myanmar territory opposite to the Bangladesh border at Ghumdhum area in Bandarban's Naikhongchhari.

Heavy firing started at around 6:00 am today, Sunday.

As of writing this report around 12:00 pm, the huge noise of shelling was heard from Tombru Bazar inside Bangladesh, some 1.5 kilometre north of Walidong hill.

Ghumdhum union parishad (UP) chairman AKM Jahangir Aziz told Prothom Alo that both parties have started heavy firing since the morning. They also have been launching mortar shells intermittently. The thud of firing has been shaking Tombru Bazar area.

The territory between Konarpara of Tombru Bazar and Kha Mong Seik hill is no mans’ land and more than 4,200 people of 621 Rohingya families have been living there for five years and they are frightened over the ground battle as well shells, mortar and bombs.

Dill Mohammad, chairman of the managing committee of the camp, told Prothom Alo that since the beginning of the battle, they used to start firing from 9:00am and would continue till 12:00pm. For a few days, both groups were exchanging bullets, artillery and mortar shells from the evening. But today, firing started in the morning, around 6:00am.

As there is no specific time of the firing, panic-stricken people in Bangladesh have stopped cultivating, going outside and sending their children to the schools. They are waking up to the noise of firing, he added.

Earlier, Myanmar launched airstrikes along the Bangladesh border after the Arakan Army (AA) seized a police outpost in Maungdaw Township in northern Rakhine State, according to news site The Irrawaddy.

On 31 August, the AA took over the outpost, killing 19 police officers and seizing firearms, ammunition and other equipment.