Burma Times Correspondent: October 17, 2015
Armed Rakhine gangs have been taking positions in Kyauktaw blocking Rohingya villages and threatening to annihilate the Muslims.
Tensions have been running high in Kyauktaw since Monday following the alleged kidnapping of a Rakhine man in the Nijhum para and Mainkya para area.
The man who was catching frogs on Sunday suddenly went missing from the Muslim inhabited area, allege police and Rakhine community leaders.
Our sources however say the supposedly missing man was found by locals in good health in Kyauktaw town on Tuesday morning. But our correspondent in the area says security forces and Rakhine community leaders have refused to acknowledge that the missing man has turned up.
Later the security forces alleged that not one, but two Rakhines have gone missing from the area. At least one man arrested in connection to the kidnapping has been brutally tortured in custody.
Starting from Monday, raids have been conducted raids in different villages of the area warning the Rohingyas of dire consequences if they were found guilty of foul play. The discovery of the missing man far away from Rohingya naighbourhoods has not eased tensions as that information has been conveniently hidden. Instead, rumours have been perpetuated that Rohingyas have killed two men and buried them in a Muslim graveyard.
The situation has taken a turn for the worse on Thursday when an announcement was made on the loudspeaker urging Rakhines to come out and protect their country from the foreign enemies. By evening, more than a dozen separate, each with more than a hundred people armed with sharp weapons had intensified their positions around different Rohingya villages near Kyauktaw town.
In response, Rohingyas have barricaded themselves in their villages but fear there would be little defence if the mobs backed by security forces decide to invade their homes as they are threatening to do.
Locals say the kidnapping plot has been masterminded by a certain quarter to incite violence against their community. They say the Rakhine populace has been swayed by propaganda that Rohingyas had killed two of their men when in fact no such incident has taken place.