Security forces in northern Rakhine State opened fire earlier today after what some described as a mob attack, and what others claimed was a scuffle with a group of villagers armed with sticks.
A security column was deployed to Rathedaung township’s Zay Di Pyin area, on the road between Thar Yar Gone Village and Auk Nan Yar Village, amid rapidly escalating tensions enflamed by several recent murders and missing persons cases.
The security personnel were allegedly transporting suspects in the case of a missing forger when they opened fire.
A resident of Thar Yar Gone Village with a connection to the Border Guard Police Force alleged that the shots were fire when a mob from Auk Nan Yar, a Muslim-majority village, tried to snatch the detained men. The villager added that the mob had attempted to block the security forces’ path to the Zay Di Pyin station. It is unclear if anyone was injured in the skirmish.
When Narinjara News contacted the authorities from the Border Guard Police Force, they declined to discuss the incident.
Reuters reported that security forces have launched an “intensive” clearance campaign in Maungdaw after a separate incident on August 3 when the bodies of six Mro villagers were found. The three men and three women had stab and gunshot wounds, according to the State Counsellor’s Office Information Committee, which accused terrorists of murdering the Buddhist ethnic minority villagers.