Myanmar military jets open fire on Christian Chin villages killing 21 people

17 March 2020

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A total of 21 villagers were killed and about two dozen injured when military jets opened fire on four majority Christian villages in Chin State, Myanmar (Burma) over the weekend.

Eyewitness said twelve people were killed in the first attack on two villages in Paletwa Township by Myanmar Army planes on 14 March. A further eight people died the following day in an airstrike on two other villages. The attacks caused about 2,000 residents to flee to a nearby town.

Traumatised and tearful Chin villagers flee their burning homes and make their way to safety by boat

“We did not expect that the military’s fighter jet would shoot into our village,” said a survivor. “In one family, seven people were killed instantly and only two teenagers, aged 13 and 15, are left – both of them were injured.

“Some houses were in flames when we left. Three houses were burning. Later we heard all the houses in our village are gone. Thankfully, my parents are safe, but our house was burnt and is gone.”

An injured Christian youth receives emergency treatment in hospital, which struggled to cope with the number of wounded

A local official said the hospital in a nearby town was struggling to cope with the number of injured. “We heard the hospital does not have enough medical supplies or doctors, and is in need of support,” he said in a Facebook post.  The Chin ethnic minority group are predominantly Christian.

From Barnabas Fund contacts and other sources

Related Countries

Myanmar (Burma)