Monday, June 24, 2024


Dhaka Tribune

Fresh firing at Naikhongchari-Teknaf border terrorize locals

Heavy firing started after 2am at Naikhongchari, and at 3:30am near Teknaf border

Update : 10 Oct 2022, 11:51 PM

After an interval of a few days, fierce clashes between Myanmar Border Guard Police (BGP), the rebel Arakan Army (AA) and Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (ARSA) terrorized locals along the Hoikang border in Naikhongchari-Teknaf area.

According to local sources, heavy firing started after 2am at the Naikhongchari border of the district and 3:30am at the Teknaf border. 

The heavy firing shook the border area.  

Haji Jalal Ahmad, member of Hoikang union parishad ward no 1, said that it felt like the whole area was shaking due to the heavy artillery firing. 

“There were no immediate reports of any casualties. We don’t know whether any shells or bullets landed in Teknaf. However, residents are preparing to leave the area, gripped with fear,” he said. 

Local sources said that many people woke up late at night due to the deafening sound of gunshots. The clashes continued till 7am in the morning on Monday. 

At this time, BGB took up a vigilant position at the Tombru border of Naikhongchari.

Sirajul Mostafa Lalu, member of Hoikang union parishad ward no 2, said, “Even sleeping children were woken up by the ear splitting noise,” he said. 

The local residents near the border said that there are large bases of Myanmar forces in different parts on the Myanmar side of the border. 

This was the deadliest attack in the ongoing conflict between Myanmar forces and rebels, they added. 

Rupla Dhar, a resident of Ghumdhum union, said: “Since morning, we have been hearing sounds of mortar shells. We are terrified once again.”

According to the latest reports from various sources, there has been a bloody clash between Myanmar’s BGP and rebel groups in two bases of Naisadong and Kumirkhali in Myanmar. Flames were seen at the Kumirkhali BGP base in Myanmar from Bangladesh. However, no casualties were reported. 

Jahangir Aziz, chairman of Ghumdum union parishad, said that since August 28, mortar shells, gunshots were heard near the border. Fighter planes flew near the border and mortar shells exploded in the territory of Bangladesh. 

Firing has been continuing on the Myanmar side of Bangladesh's Tombru of Ghumdhum for the past two months.

On September 3, Myanmar helicopters intruded to within 300 to 400 yards of Bangladeshi airspace at Naikhongchhari point several times.

A Rohingya boy was killed on September 16 and five others were injured as a mortar shell fired by the Myanmar army exploded at Zero Point Rohingya Camp.

The deceased was identified as Mohammad Iqbal of the camp.

On the same day, another Bangladeshi youth was seriously injured in a landmine explosion along the Bangladesh-Myanmar border in Naikhongchhari upazila of Bandarban.

The injured was Anganthowai Tanchangya, 22, a resident of Ghumdhum union of the upazila.

Earlier, the Foreign Ministry summoned the Myanmar envoy to Dhaka thrice over the issue. Dhaka lodged strong protests and expressed deep concern at air and artillery strikes landing inside Bangladeshi territory and violations of the country’s air space.

However, BGB Director General Shakil Ahmed on Monday said that the tense situation along the Myanmar border is the country’s internal issue. “However, the BGB has been in regular contact with Myanmar Border Guard Police (BGP),” he noted.

“A flag meeting will soon be held,” Sakil Ahmed said.

The official also said that the recent landmine explosion near the border was made known to the Myanmar authorities. He also urged Bangladeshis living near the border areas to remain cautious in the situation. 

Bangladesh has been under tremendous pressure caused by a massive Rohingya population taking refuge in Cox’s Bazar since August 25, 2017 and has been working to ensure the quick repatriation of the refugees to their homes in Myanmar.

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