Gang rape victim among 179 Rakhine civilians killed by Myanmar junta in four months: ULA

Residents mourn over the bodies of 21 civilians killed in junta airstrike on the Muslim village of Thada in Minbya Township on March 18. / Arakan Army

Around 180 civilians have been killed and more than 460 wounded in arbitrary attacks by Myanmar junta troops in Rakhine State over the past four months, according to the United League of Arakan (ULA)’s Humanitarian and Development Coordination Office (HDCO), The Irrawaddy reports.

The ethnic Arakan Army (AA), the armed wing of the ULA, launched a large-scale offensive against the junta in northern Rakhine and Paletwa Township in neighboring Chin State on Nov. 13 last year, seizing around 170 junta bases including command centers, and occupying around 10 towns.

Junta forces have responded by indiscriminately targeting civilians with deadly violence in the conflict zone.

The HDCO said in its recent humanitarian situation report that 179 civilians – 115 males and 64 females – were killed between Nov. 13 and March 24. Another 468 residents were injured in junta attacks, the report said.

Moreover, regime forces arrested 471 civilians, 424 of them men, during the same period, it added.

Clashes between regime troops and the ethnic army over the past four months also displaced another 295,868 people from their homes.

The number of internally displaced people (IDPs) in Rakhine and Paletwa now exceeds 358,200, according to the report.

The HDCO said that around 80 percent of the IDP population requires emergency humanitarian assistance.

Meanwhile, displaced civilians are still being targeted by junta airstrikes, drone attacks, and artillery shelling even in the stable central belt of Rakhine, the office said.

On March 18, a junta aircraft bombed the Muslim village of Thada in Minbya Township, killing 21 villagers and injuring 25 others. The village had earlier been taken by the AA.

Regime forces killed a total of 30 civilians during clashes with the AA in Minbya Township from Nov. 13 to Jan. 23, the HDCO said.

Junta troops also killed the parents of a female villager in Minbya before gang-raping and then murdering her, according to the confession of a soldier detained by the AA.

Detained regime officers have also confessed to arbitrary killings of civilian detainees and destruction of infrastructure in the state.

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