The Khumi Affairs Coordination Committee (KACC) commended the release of a Chin youth prisoner by the Arakan Army (AA) this Tuesday, December 15.
“We waited so long for his release…We’re very happy for him and his family,” Salai Pai Nan, KACC’s coordinator, told Khonumthung News.
After holding Salai Aung Soe for just over four months in a secret location, AA released the youth to two members from his family and a village leader.
The ethnic armed organization (EAO) arrested him and three other Chin youth near Nga Tharai village in Kyauktaw Township on July 29. The youth were traveling to Paletwa town in southern Chin State from Kyauktaw town.
AA released the other youth on August 25 but kept Salai Aung Soe until mid-December, while denying the youth was being held captive.
Salai Pai Nan told Khonumthung News that AA should “take responsibility” for its actions. Many innocent civilians have been abducted by the EAO or Burma Army during the conflict in southern Chin State, a KACC statement said. It called on the armed groups to immediately release all civilian detainees.
Salai Pai Nan expects that stability will soon return to the township and AA will release all its prisoners.
According to KACC, the EAO abducted 105 civilians in Paletwa Township between 2015-20. AA released 84 prisoners, but 21 remain in its detention camps.