Interview with bereaved families of Hindus killed by ARSA terrorists

Salmon Barlar, Kyeinchaung Village.
Salmon Barlar, Kyeinchaung Village.

By Min Thit (MNA)

Upon receiving information about the location of dozens of dead Hindus in northern Rakhine State, the bodies of the people allegedly killed by extremist terrorists from the Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (ARSA) were unearthed by security forces near the village of Yebawkya in Maungtaw. Twenty-eight bodies were discovered on Sunday, and 17 more on Monday. The following are the accounts of surviving family members interviewed by Myanmar News Agency reporters at the site in Maungtaw where the bodies were found.

Ronni, Maungtaw Township, Thittonenar Khwa-Sone Village tract, Oh-Htein Village
Among 28 bodies dug firstly is my elder brother, named Hannu. He lived with his family at the village Thittonenar Khwa-Sone village. When examined, I ascertained that it was my own brother, by seeing his frequently-dressed shirt. He visited his daughter at Khamaungseik village to stay for a night. On the day when the terrorist attacks happened, terrorists came to Khamaungseik to abduct Hindus, in which my brother was one of the victims. All were inhumanely killed on the way, with eight Hindu women and children abducted to Bangladesh. Women were raped. I had a contact with those women. I did not yet know whether my brother’s wife and children have not been accounted and have been killed. We heard most of them killed by terrorists. Our village Khamaungseik, where Hindus mostly lived, was surrounded by Bengali villages.

Arshee Kumar, 4 ward Maungtaw
I lived with my family in Maungtaw. My daughter, my parents-in-law and my brother-in-law were among the victims. My daughter lived with my parents-in-law in Khamaungseik village (south). Dead bodies dug out included corpses of my mother-in-law and brother-in-law. The bodies of my daughter, only 8 years old, and my father-in-law have not been found yet. My spouse has suffered from a mental disorder since the brutal slaughter of the people. All were killed by throat slitting. Some were found to have been decapitated and limbs amputated. We want to find our daughter as soon as possible. I will not stop looking for my daughter even if she is found dead and it is only her skeleton. I pray for my daughter not to experience such a worse situation. Terrorists not only killed Hindus, including the cruel killing of children, but also raped the women.

Salmon Barlar, Kyeinchaung Village
My husband’s two brothers were among the dead bodies dug up. Their names are Bisnia and Han Montie. Their wives and children were also killed. A mother and her two children and another mother and her three children have not been accounted for. We overheard that one was abducted to Bangladesh. I live now in Kyeinchaung village. My husband’s two brothers earned their living in Khamaungseik as blacksmiths.

Mardoori, Khamaungseik Village (south)
My sister, her spouse and her two sons were among the killed. Prior to the event, I fortunately missed being killed as I had been in Thamanthar village. Among the corpses dug out, there was the body of my sister. My sister wore her usual bangles on her wrist. By seeing these, I identified that it was her. The bodies of her husband and her sons have not yet been found.

Orno Barlar, Khamaungseik Village
Among the corpses dug up were my husband and two sons. I could identify them as I well remembered their clothing. On the bodies were cuttings on their throats with limbs amputated. Some legs were almost completely cut. I survived because I had been in Maungtaw at an event. Fifteen of my relatives have not yet been found. Terrorists killed our Hindus in Khamaungseik.

Minu, ward 4 Maungtaw
I live in Maungtaw. My two sons and my daughter lived in Khamaungseik. My elder son was married, as was my daughter. One son was still single. My sons were eking out a living as goldsmiths. Yesterday, my two sons were found among the dead bodies dug up yesterday. His daughter and child, including my daughter and her son, were abducted to Bangladesh. Over there, our Hindus found them and brought them, it was learnt. I had phone contacts with my daughter and daughter-in-law. It has been learnt that gold from their shop was robbed.

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