Myanmar’s insurgent armed group, the Arakan Army (AA), has claimed full control of the country’s port city of Paktok. The news agency AFP reported this information in a report.
The Arakan Army said late on Wednesday night that they have captured the important port city of Pakta, the capital of western Rakhine State. The city has at least 20,000 inhabitants.
The city was partially captured by Arakan Army fighters last November. Now he demanded to take over the entire city.
Residents of Paktaw say the military junta has dropped bombs from helicopters on the town almost daily since taking power in 2021. Apart from this, cannon balls were also fired from the ship.
New satellite images from Google show that several buildings near the harbor have been damaged. Apart from this, the center of the city is almost in ruins. Several buildings in the police compound were also destroyed.
A source in the Arakan Army, speaking on condition of anonymity, told AFP that the junta soldiers fled the city by boat on the evening of January 19.
The source also said that Arakan Army fighters have set up checkpoints around the city on Thursday. At this time, they have also fired several times with the navy of the junta.
However, AFP could not immediately verify the authenticity of the Arakan Army’s claim. The country’s junta government has not commented on this so far.
The city of Pauktao is now virtually cut off from the outside world. The Arakan Army is one of the members of the Brotherhood Alliance, an alliance of three rebel organizations.
In October last year, three rebel groups in northern Myanmar—Myanmar National Democratic Alliance Army (MNDAA), Ta’ang National Liberation Army (TNLA) and Arakan Army (AA) launched a joint fight against the junta forces. At times, China tried to mediate with these three groups, but it failed.