The military junta, which is in a fierce battle with the Arakan Army (AA), has banned fishing on the Rakhine coast and blocked the roads, so the locals are facing a near-starvation situation without being able to buy any food, local residents said.
The junta has not allowed the fishing villages on the Rakhine coast to sail to the sea, so the locals do not dare to fish.
“In the past, we used to fish about 10 million kyats worth of fish per day. We have to share it with the workers. Now, if there are no Junta’s Navy vessels, we can go fishing. But we don’t get fish during the day. We get much more fish at night. Now, we can’t fish at night,” said a fishery business owner.
In addition, the military junta has issued a curfew order at night. When the fishing boats light up and sail in the sea, the junta troops will shoot them if they see the light, so they do not dare to fish, said a fisherman from Thandwe Town.
“The junta has issued a curfew, so we can’t light up the boats. If we can’t light up, we can’t go fishing. If they don’t let us out, we don’t dare go out,” said the fisherman.
According to a local woman from a fishing village on the Rakhine coast, in addition to the ban on fishing, the military junta has blocked the roads to travel from one village to another, so the fishing villages are unable to buy food. One bag of raw rice costs more than MMK 100,000, but it is only available in limited quantities.
“One bag of white rice is more than MMK 100,000. Even yesterday, I could only buy half a bag. Here, the junta army has been blocking the roads, so people can’t buy anything,” he explained.
Starting November 27th, the military junta announced that it would ban the passage of villages to villages in Rakhine State. If that happens, the locals are worried that the fishing villages will not be able to go fishing or buy food and will face a famine situation.
“What the situation is, the army do not allow that people travel village to village on the 27th. I just want to say that we are going to face famine,” said a resident of a fishing village in Thandwe Town.
The Arakan Army (AA), which is participating in Operation 1027, has launched fighting in Rakhine State as well and has been attacking the military junta camps. Therefore, fighting has been going on fiercely in Rakhine State for the last few weeks.