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32 dead in Myanmar

Yangon – At least 32 people were killed, including 11 Myanmar security forces, as alleged Rohingya militants attacked remote border posts in Rakhine State, the army’s commander in chief said Friday.

 One soldier and 10 police sacrificed their lives for the country,” Commander in Chief Min Aung Hlaing said in a Facebook statement, adding 21 militants died in the fighting which is ongoing.

 

More than 20 police posts came under attack by an estimated 150 militants in the early hours of Friday, prompting soldiers to fight back, the statement issued by the State Counsellor’s office said.  “Currently, five police officers have been killed and… according to initial information, we have seven bodies of the extremist Bengali terrorists,””Many police posts and stations were attacked,”

“The situation is complicated… the military is arriving,” the officer told AFP on condition of anonymity The UN believes those security “clearances” may have amounted to ethnic cleansing of the Rohingya, a mainly Muslim minority living in Buddhist Myanmar. His report urged Myanmar to scrap restrictions on movement and citizenship for its roughly million-strong Rohingya minority, the majority of whom are stateless.

Myanmar security forces have conducted sporadic operations to flush out suspected militants throughout this year, often resulting in casualties among Rohingya villagers. They have spoken of their fear at being trapped between the security forces and the militants, who are accused of conducting a shadowy assassination campaign against perceived collaborators with the state.

It was not immediately clear if Friday’s outbreak of violence was led by the Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (ARSA), which claims to lead an insurgency based in the remote May Yu mountain range in northern Rakhine. Recent tensions have been further tweaked after several Buddhists were found dead, prompting some ethnic Rakhine villagers to flee. Asia Nation


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