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Military battalions store food items in Rakhine State raising speculation of war

Narinjara News, 17 March 2023

The military council has reportedly stored enough food items to last for many years in the battalions in Rakhine State, leading military analysts to suggest that the soldiers are preparing for a war.

According to a source close to 1st battalion of the military council in Maungdaw township, the soldiers are also storing weapons as well as manpower.

"Food items have been delivered to the battalions every day. The border guard police battalions have also stocked the items. The stocked items should be sufficient for nearly two years,” added the source.

During the last four-month-long resurgent battles in Rakhine State, the Arakan Army (AA) blocked supply routes from all directions that resulted in shortage of food and ammunition in some military camps.

Even after a temporary cease-fire agreement with the AA on 26 November 2022, the local residents reported that the military council was stockpiling military equipments and food supplies to avoid such a situation.
A woman from Maungdaw locality said that besides weapons and food items, the soldiers are also transporting recorders and other surveillance equipments in a dyna car on 14 March to the north of Maungdaw township.

"The white dyna car was full of items like satellites and sound recorders. I don’t know where those will be installed. They took those items from Shwe Zar bridge to Maungdaw," she added.

U U Tun Win, a former Kyauktaw Township Pyithu Hluttaw representative, revealed that this time the soldiers are preparing in a better way.

"We have seen a lot of military activities in the ceasefire period. The situation is worrying for the local population,” he added. During a ceasefire, the military personnel usually prepare with
weapons and food items, but this time it is seemingly different from the previous ones.
AA spokesperson U Khing Thu Kha in a recent press conference stated that the ULA/AA was closely monitoring the activities of soldiers.

 He issued a stern warning that if the military council fails to keep promises on the ceasefire, another gun fighting may erupt in the region at any moment.

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