Fierce clashes continue in Rakhine
Fierce fighting has reportedly been going on between the Myanmar Army and armed group Arakan Army in Rakhine state. Gunshots were heard from Myanmar border’s adjoining Naikhongchhari in Bandarban on Monday. A mortar shell splinter from Myanmar fell near the zero line of the border.
Local public representatives said the firing in the Myanmar side of the border has frightened the people of Bangladesh. Five primary schools adjacent to Ghumdhum border was closed yesterday.
Naikhongchhari upazila primary education officer Triratan Chakma told Prothom Alo that the teachers of the schools along the border informed about the gunshots in Myanmar. Later the authorities shut Tumbru government primary school, Baishfari, Ghumdhum, Bhajabnia and Paschim Ghumdhum primary schools at around 1:00pm yesterday.
Local public representatives said Myanmar’s frontier force Border Guard Police (BGP) has two border outposts at the opposite of Tumbru and Baishfari borders. Fierce gunshots and shelling were heard at the border outpost areas after 10:00am yesterday. Several teachers said a splinter of a mortar shell fell on the zero line near Dhekibunia outpost. Firing took place in these two border outposts on Saturday too.
Naikhongchhari upazila nirbahi officer (UNO) Md Jakaria said the people of the border area have been asked to remain vigilant in the wake of firing inside Myanmar.
He said the BGB intensified its patrol on the border area.
Several sources of the border area said armed group Arakan Army has taken control of all border outposts except Dhekibunia and Tumbru Right near along the zero line. The rebel group is trying to take control of these outposts too.
The armed group reportedly took control of an army camp in Minbya town in Rakhine state. A report of Irrawaddy news said the Arakan Army has taken control of 380 battalion headquarters of the Myanmar Army. It also reported severe clashes in Rakhine’s Mrauk U, Kyauktaw and Rathedaung.
Arakan Army in a statement claimed Junta has no capacity left to continue the fight.
Foreign minister Hasan Mahmud told journalists at a briefing yesterday that Bangladesh is observing the situation in Myanmar as the army and armed group Arakan Army continue to fight in Rakhine.
“Our border guards are on alert there. We are also maintaining contact with the Myanmar Army or government. We expect no mortar shells from Myanmar fell on our territory,” he added.