(News) Shell Landed in Restaurant and Injured Two Employees in Mrauk U, Rakhine State While Zero COVID-19 Prevention Measurement

Shell Goes through the roof and the restaurant in Mrauk U and injured two employees on April 27 
Sittway. April 28, 2020.
An artillery shell flew through the restaurant’s roof and exploded on the floor and injured two employees in Mrauk U at 4 PM yesterday.

The town residents tell our news agency the shell was fired from the military convey trucks on the highway and from the mountains near Mrauk U. 

The residents heard both artillery and gunfire near the town for 15 minutes yesterday evening. 

“It is true the shell is landed and exploded at the restaurant in Mrauk U this evening and wounded two persons,” said a local charity volunteer who wants to remain anonymous for his personal safety.

Mr. Aung Lin, a chef at the restaurant, and a female waitress (name is still in searching) were injured and taken to the hospital in Mrauk U.  

He said, “There were a number of military convey trucks heading to Minbya military based Light Infantry Battalion 540 yesterday, where Arakan Army and Myanmar army have been intensifying fighting for two weeks. When the truck passed a little bit over Mrauk U I was told they were attacked by remote landmines. That might be the cause of army firing shells and guns into the town.”

He said the soldiers and police patrolled and searched houses and travelers in the town. They also stopped cars and motorbikes on the roads yesterday. He said the military is increasing patrols in the town areas that were not seen much last year. 

According to him more refugees have been moving to the IDP camps in Mrauk U township in this summer. They are not only from the native township but they are also from Kyauktaw and Ponnaygun townships, where the military operations are increasing and coordinated with daily aerial bombing and shelling into the populated villages. 

He highlights the needs of the refugee assistances in which the most difficult for the IDPs in Mrauk U township is drinking water, foods, and medicine. ICRC and WFP provide foods to the IDPs, but the army restrictions hinder delivering enough foods to the IDP camps. 

When our news agency asked him the COVID-19 prevention measurements in the IDP camps and infected patients, he said there is no infected patient report yet. Maybe there is no lab nor machine to test and tackle the suspects, but many workers come back from China, Malaysia, Thailand and Yangon, and there must be some infected people he guesses. 

He said COVID-19 preventive measurements in the camps is almost zero. He said it may be poor management of the government or leave Rakhine IDPs behind. 

He said, “A nurse has to taking care of five villages without equipment and test kits. What we are doing now is we explain the IDPs how danger of the virus and how to wash hands. But we don’t even enough soaks and masks.”

UN, US, and international community have been calling on Myanmar government to halt hostility in Rakhine and join hands with the international community to combat the global pandemic. But it seems music to buffalo but killing more civilians as daily business of the army.

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