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Civilian death toll mounts in Rakhine State feud between Burma Army and AA

On Nov. 4, three people, including a six-year-old boy were killed and 23 were injured when the Burma Army fired artillery at the Arakan Army (AA) in Kyauktaw township. “At least 23 people from five villages were injured and amongst them two are in critical condition. They are now in Sittwe and Kyauktaw hospitals,” said a spokesperson from Phyu Sin Myittar charity group. The fighting between the Burma Army and the AA forced the residents to flee their homes for safety. 

“Our village has nothing to do with the fighting and the military purposely fires at us. This is outrageous,” a resident of Shwe Pyi Thit village told DVB. Local human rights activists confirm that the junta is targeting civilians “The number of war crimes committed by the military is increasing every time people are killed,” the activist said. One local school teacher was killed and two others, including a child, were injured in a village, located in Buthidaung Township on Nov. 5. The victim was a 35-year-old school teacher killed while assisting the two injured. “The 5-year-old child and a woman were injured when the first large weapon fell near the village. The teacher went there to rescue the injured, then, another large weapon fell and he died on the spot,” a local said. 

On Nov. 8, the AA ambushed two Burma Army vessels near Kaung Laung Chaung village, located in Minbya township. The Burma Army has been restricting humanitarian access to the state since August. This means locals fleeing the fighting, and those injured, are unable to receive urgent assistance. The townships affected by the Burma Army blockade of necessities is Rathedaung, Buthidaung, Myaybon, Maungdaw and Angumaw townships. The AA announced that six civilians have been killed and 21 have been injured since fighting between it and the Burma Army resumed in 2022.

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