Burma Army Soldiers Injured by Landmine in Paletwa

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Two Burma Army soldiers were injured by a landmine explosion in southern Chin State’s Paletwa Township on Friday, according to residents of the area near the town of Paletwa where the incident occurred.

The landmine reportedly went off on Friday morning in Palet Chaung, an area located just east of Paletwa, near the Aung Zaydi Pagoda, about 200 meters from Paletwa on the opposite side of the Kaladan River.

Soldiers from the Burma Army’s Light Infantry Battalion 289 were patrolling the area at the time, according to local residents.

“The sound of the explosion was really loud. People in Paletwa got a real shock. I think rebels got some information ahead of the Burma Army’s patrol of the area,” a local source told Khonumthung News.

“The Burma Army said that the AA [Arakan Army] planted the landmine that went off. It wasn’t an artillery or mortar shell. It was definitely a landmine,” the source added.

Khonumthung News was unable to independently confirm the reports of Burma Army casualties.

Burma Army and AA forces have had multiple clashes in Paletwa Township this year, but most have occurred in areas far from the town that serves as the township’s administrative center.

Residents say this latest incident is a worrying sign that the fighting may be coming closer to more heavily populated areas.

Col. Win Zaw Oo, the spokesperson for the Burma Army’s Western Regional Command, was quoted by the Burmese-language service of Voice of America as saying that the AA was behind the attack. 

Khonumthung News repeatedly called AA spokesperson Khine Thukha for comment but did not receive a response.

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