War against the junta
Civilians injured in junta shelling on October 17. /CJ
By The Irrawaddy October 18, 2022
Three people, including a schoolteacher, were killed and at least 13 injured by junta artillery strikes in Minbya township, Rakhine state on Monday, residents said.
Nos. 380, 379 and 541 light infantry battalions based in Minbya town shelled villages after junta troops were hit by a landmine attack in the town, residents said.
Two sisters from Palaung Pyin village died in hospital, while a 50-year-old teacher working in Htaung Chaung Gyi village was killed immediately in junta strikes.
“At least 13 other people have been injured and possibly more,” a resident told The Irrawaddy midday Monday. Junta battalions were still shelling villages at the time, he added.
The teacher’s body could not be transported to her home in the town of Minbya on Monday because junta troops had blocked the roads.
Schools and shops were also closed in Minbya town due to artillery strikes, residents said.
“People stay indoors and no one dares to go out into the street,” said one resident.
Villagers could give few details of Monday’s casualties as they fled the shelling. The Irrawaddy could not independently verify its reports.
A 30-year-old Muslim woman in Kyauktaw town in Rakhine was also killed by the regime on Monday when junta troops stationed at the Kisspanadi Bridge fired mortar shells at Pike The Ward around 8 p.m.
“There was no fighting yesterday. They fired shells at houses on both sides of the bridge. She fled when she heard shelling but was hit,” said a community elder from Pike The Ward to The Irrawaddy.
The woman was rushed to a field hospital where she died of her injuries, neighborhood residents said.
Prior to Monday’s deadly shelling, at least five people had been killed and more than 20 injured by junta artillery strikes in Kyauktaw, Mrauk-U and Buthidaung since fighting between junta forces and the army of Arakan intensified two months ago.
On September 29, the Rakhine National Party strongly condemned the junta’s artillery attacks which caused civilian casualties and damaged residential areas.
Junta and AA troops have been locked in heavy fighting in northern Rakhine since August. The junta has blocked roads and waterways in the region, limiting food supplies. The resulting spike in food prices is weighing heavily on residents.