Mon, 26 February 2024
The Daily Ittefaq

264 Myanmar border, security force members now in Bangladesh

Update : 06 Feb 2024, 20:22

A total of 264 members of Myanmar's different forces including border guard police (BGP) and security forces have taken refuge in Bangladesh in the past three days as the fighting between the Myanmar army and the rebel Arakan Army escalated at the border between the two countries, according to the Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB).

Another mortar shell from Myanmar landed across the border in Bandarban's Ghumdhum union this morning but no causality was reported, said Md Anwar Hossain, a member of ward 5 of Ghumdhum.

On Monday, at least two people were killed as mortar shells fired from Myanmar landed in a village across the border while 106 Burmese paramilitary border guards fled their posts and took refuge in Bangladesh.

Deputy commissioner of bordering Bandarban Shah Mujahid Uddin told reporters that one of the two slain people is a Bangladeshi woman while the other is a Rohingya man. They were killed at Japaitali area near the border. 

Police said 50-year-old Hosne Ara, wife of local market trader Badshah Mia, was serving food to the unnamed 58-year-old ethnic Rohingya male day labourer when the shell hit, killing them instantly.

According to the public relations department of Border Guard Bangladesh-34 and its headquarters, a fierce battle between the Arakan Army and the junta government is being fought on the other side of the border since Sunday.

Bandarban deputy commissioner today declared Ghumdhum Government Primary School as a shelter centre for residents of three wards under Ghumdhum union.

The constant fighting between the Myanmar army and the rebel Arakan Army across the border has caused many residents to leave their homes for safety. Mortar shells and bullets have landed in Bangladesh over the last week.

Officials and residents at bordering villages said Myanmar military helicopters continued strafing on Myanmar side of the border at Tombru region to support their government's land forces to encounter rebel insurgents at Rakhine state.

Myanmar's Rakhine state has a border with Bangladesh stretching some 270-kilometre (167-mile) that witnesses frequent clashes since November, when the Arakan Army fighters ended a ceasefire that was largely enforced since a 2021 coup.

But Monday's killing was the first such incident of casualties inside Bangladesh while residents at several bordering villages largely evacuated their homes for safety.

Residents and officials said gunshots are being heard from the Myanmar side since Saturday in frontier areas in Bangladesh, where over one million Myanmar's ethnic Muslim minority Rohingyas were sheltered since they fled their homeland in Rakhine in 2017 to evade persecution under a military crackdown.

Security officials also called "unprecedented" the fleeing of the Myanmar's BGP forces abandoning their posts amid the insurgency in their own land to take refuge to their BGB counterpart crossing the international border. 

More on this topic

More on this topic