By Kyaw Kyaw Htay | 13.8.2021
Minbya, Arakan State — Four more Rohingyas from ‘Minbya’ and ‘Mrauk-U’ Townships have been abducted by the members of ‘Arakan Army (AA),’ a Rakhine Buddhist rebel group, operating in northern Arakan state in the past few days, according to reliable sources.
Three were from ‘Letma (Lombosshor)’ village, Minbya Township, and identified as Iliyas s/o Mohammed Rashid, 43 and his brother Omar Meah s/o Mohammed Rashid, 38; Hafiz Ahmed 36, while one was from ‘Kaing Taw (Sor Fara)’ village, Mrauk-U Township, and identified as Master Ibadullah s/o Amanullah, 44. All of them were abducted under the false allegations that they were robbers and cow thieves.
[For more, read the report: BREAKING: ROHINGYA VILLAGE UNDER TOTAL SIEGE OF ‘ARAKAN ARMY’ REBELS]
“They were not robbers, thieves or criminals. They were abducted by the AA rebels under false allegations and to cover up the siege and crimes they committed in the last week of July at Lombosshor village. Real miscreants, from both Rohingya and Rakhine, are collaborating with AA to execute fake interviews and statements,” said a villager asking to withhold his/her identity.
After the siege by the AA rebels on the Rohingya village Letma (Lombosshor), many villagers fled to hideouts in fear of abductions, tortures and killings in their hands. Many of them are unable to return to their village yet as they were put on the wanted list by the rebels. The AA rebels continue to raid the village from time to time in search of them.
Of the four people, Iliyas s/o Mohammed Rashid and Master Ibadullah s/o Amanullah were caught and abducted from Sittwe (Akyab) on August 9, when reached there while escaping from abduction. Both are well educated people and reportedly being held in an AA base on a hill tract near Minbya.
“AA’s abduction of people even from Akyab (Sittwe) shows its reach and capability to commit on the poor villagers even there. Besides, AA seems to be targeting educated class, religious or modern, by accusing them of being criminals” the villager added.
The other two people were abducted while the AA besieged and occupied ‘Letma’ village in late July 2021. These cases were not alone. There were many more reports of abductions, killings and demands for ransom.
Most of the time, the AA rebels demand a huge ransom to release those from being held. This time, they haven’t said anything yet regarding these two villagers, according to a source from Sittwe.
On the other hand, officials from Myanmar Junta’s administration are said to be looking for the chairman of Islamic religious council, U Sein Min, who released a statement in favor of the AA. It has been learnt that the statement was released under AA’s coercion.
[Edited by M.S. Anwar]