Villagers who fled from their houses in early 2019 due to fighting

Kyaw Thu Htay | DMG
March 12, Sittwe

Fighting between the Tatmadaw and the Arakan Army (AA) that broke out on March 11 near Phat Kya village in Ponnagyun Township has prompted more than 600 residents from Phat Kya to flee to nearby villages, residents said.

Phat Kya resident U Maung Ba Win said the hostilities began at around 4 p.m. on Wednesday and continued until 8 a.m. the following morning.

“Fighting was going on the whole night. Bullets from heavy weapons and small arms landed in the village so people fled to nearby villages. We are worried about our household goods because nobody is left in the village,” he said.

U Aung Than Tin, an Arakan State lawmaker representing Ponnagyun Township, said the displaced villagers were currently staying at Na Daung Kya and Moe Tin Pyin villages.

“They fled to nearby villages. They aren’t staying for the moment at monasteries. They are living in the houses of their relatives at nearby villages,” he said.

Some 130,000 people in Arakan State have been forced to flee their homes due to conflict between the Tatmadaw and the AA since December 2018, according to the Rakhine Ethnics Congress (REC).

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