(Ann Township, Rakhine State – 6 August 2020)
Three Chin people have been killed and one seriously injured within the space of a week in Ann Township, Rakhine State. On 29 July 2020, U Maung Tin (60) was killed after stepping on a landmine while farming. The next day, Ko That Khine Soe (28) was killed attempting to retrieve U Maung Tin’s body from the scene. In the blast, U San Win (48) was also injured and is still undergoing treatment. On 3 Aug 2020 a third Chin civilian lost their life in Ann Town as Mai Wa Tone (17) died after stepping on a landmine close to a Tatmadaw outpost:
“Mai Wa Tone, a 17-year-old resident of Zu Kaing, Ann Township died on the way to hospital after losing part of her leg in the blast. At approximately 7 a.m. on 3 August, she was collecting water from a small stream between her village and Dar Let village where she stepped on a landmine near the Tatmadaw’s camp and died,” said a community member who agreed to speak to CHRO.
In another incident, on the morning of 29 July 2020, 60-year-old, U Maung Tin, from Kyeik Chaung village, Zu Kaing Village Tract went to pick Jengkol beans on his farm close to the village when he stepped on a landmine. As he did not return home, the next day a group of villagers went to his farm in order to search for him. While they were searching, there was another landmine explosion:
“28-year-old, Ko That Khine Soe and 48-year-old, U San Win, the two people who were injured by another landmine explosion while searching for U Maung Tin on the farm, were carried back to the village. Ko That Khine Soe died while they were on their way back, having nearly arrived in the village. However, U San Win, although severely injured, managed to get to the village and was taken to the 300-bedded Tamadaw Hospital in Ann Town and is now undergoing treatment,” said a community member from Kyeik Chaung village.
In the wake of these cases, the head of the news and information committee of Chin University Students in Rakhine State (CUSR) stated “landmine awareness-raising is needed in some townships in Rakhine State as landmine detonation is a danger to civilian life. Besides, we also urge both armed groups [Tatmadaw and AA] to avoid the laying of landmines near towns and villages, in close proximity to civilians.”
The villages of Kyeik Chaung and Zu Kaing, Zun Kaing Village Tract are located approximately 27 miles west of Ann Town.
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