Hnin Nwe | DMG
16 July, Rathedaung

A clash broke out near Kyauktan village in Arakan State’s Rathedaung Township on the afternoon of July 16, injuring three villagers, according to residents.

With the Tatmadaw opening fire from helicopters at about 1 p.m., three farmers who were cultivating near the village were hit by shrapnel, village administrator U Aung Thaung Shwe told DMG.

“Villagers do cultivation if there is no fighting. They are hiding in their houses during clashes,” he said.

Two of them are being provided medical treatment at Lamonetaing village, also in Rathedaung Township, and the third villager whose knee was wounded has been left in his village because he cannot walk, said U Aung Thaung Shwe.

“We plan to take him to the clinic after the gunfire stops,” he said.

Many villagers fled to Rathedaung town and the city of Sittwe after the Tatmadaw earlier this month announced that it would conduct regional clearance operations near Kyauktan village, but some farmers remained behind to tend to crops.

Amyotha Hluttaw lawmaker U Khin Maung Latt said clashes broke out on Thursday near Kyauktan, Aung Tharsi and Hteeswe villages.

“It is true there are clashes. We are still hearing the sound of gunfire and three people got injured,” he told DMG at about 4 p.m.

DMG phoned Brigadier-General Zaw Min Tun and Major-General Tun Tun Nyi of the Tatmadaw True News Information Team seeking comment on the hostilities, but they could not be reached.

Conflict in Arakan and southern Chin states has displaced tens of thousands of people and resulted in hundreds of civilian casualties due to landmines, stray heavy weapons and small arms fire, and other combat-adjacent violence.

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