According to media reports, a Myanmar military junta war plane struck a school in Myanmar’s Chin State, killing eleven people, including eight children. According to locals, the strike occurred on Wednesday in the secluded mountain community of Vuilu.
Myanmar is currently at war, with several armed groups battling the military junta that toppled an elected government in 2021.
According to the BBC, Chin State is a bastion of opposition to Myanmar’s Military junta.
This week, its grassroots insurgency saw ethnic Chin militants retake the border town of Rikhawdar. According to inhabitants of Vuilu, a hilltop village of fewer than 80 houses in the state’s south, a military plane dropped at least two bombs on them on Wednesday evening.
One razed a building that was being used as an improvised school, killing the eight children and three adults who were enrolled. The youngsters killed ranged in age from seven to eleven years old. The bombs also damaged numerous additional houses and the village’s two churches.
The military Junta forces and several insurgent groups have clashed often in Southern Chin State, but locals say there has been no combat near Vuilu.
According to one villager, the Arakan Army, an ethnic insurgent organization that recently began its military campaign against central government forces in neighboring Rakhine State, was using a route through Vuilu to bring in reinforcements and supplies.
Over the last three weeks, the military government has suffered a series of defeats in attacks by opposition groups across the nation, and it is depending heavily on air power to respond.
Chin State communities were among the first to take up weapons against the junta following the 2021 coup, using home-made tumiorhunting rifles to ambush military convoys.
Locally created militias across the vast, mountainous state banded together under the banner of the Chin Defence Force and began acquiring sophisticated weapons from India across the border.
Fighting between the military and the well-armed Arakan Army militants, who now control much of neighboring Rakhine State, has also damaged the south of Chin State, in the town of Paletwa.
Ethnic Chin militants have succeeded in seizing a number of military bases and limiting the majority of government forces to fortified barracks in major towns.
The Chin, who are primarily Christian, have long complained about the central government’s neglect and abuse. The state had an active armed rebellion in prior decades.
In other parts of the country, the junta has faced a series of intense offensives in recent weeks, including one by an alliance of three ethnic minority armed groups in Shan State, which borders China, and another by allied pro-democracy fighters elsewhere.
Myanmar’s military-installed president has warned that the country is in danger of disintegrating if the government cannot handle the conflict in Shan State.
UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres expressed great concern this week about the country’s increasing war, which has displaced two million people.
On February 1, 2021, the military, also known as the Tatmadaw, seized power and detained several political leaders, including State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi. The coup was widely condemned by the international community.
Protests erupted across Myanmar in response to the coup, with demonstrators demanding the restoration of civilian rule and the release of detained leaders. The military responded to the protests with force, leading to significant civilian casualties.
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