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Burma’s Office of the State Counsellor yesterday released a news statement, saying that a village headman in Maungdaw Township, northwestern Arakan State, was killed by 10 masked men armed with machetes on the night of 17 April.
“About 10 men wearing black masks went to Ami Ali’s house in Hpweyar village, Tat-Oo Chaung village tract, and dragged him from his home while hacking at him with machetes,” the statement said.
“When neighbours came out, the attackers fired guns into the air five times to warn them off, then ran away.”
Thirty-eight-year-old Ami Ali died from multiple slashes and stabbings all over his body.
Police have opened an investigation into the incident, the statement said.
The Office of the State Counsellor added that another villager had been injured after being shot by armed dacoits in nearby Thawonchaung village that same night.
It also said that a third man, Mamad Talaung, 42, from Kyainchaung Taung village in Maungdaw Township, was abducted by a group of men on 16 April.
The area around Maungdaw has been restive since armed men, believed to be Rohingya militants, stormed Burmese border guard posts on 9 October last year, killing nine officers. Reprisals by the Burmese army and paramilitary Arakanese were brutal, and in the ensuing months tens of thousands of Rohingya civilians from Maungdaw Township fled their homes and sought sanctuary across the border in Bangladesh.
Earlier this month, the Office of the State Counsellor, who is de facto leader of the country, Aung San Suu Kyi, announced that 23 people had been confirmed killed and 10 others listed as missing in Maungdaw since October.