Ultimatum issued for handover of arms in Myanmar western state within three days

0 Comment(s)Print E-mail Xinhua, November 1, 2012
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Myanmar's Rakhine local authorities have issued an ultimatum, setting Nov. 3 as the deadline for handing over of all arms including guns, bayonets, swords daggers, spears, bow and arrow, arms to the nearby police stations and security forces, official media reported Thursday.

"Legal action will be taken against those who are found holding these arms from the said day onwards," the ultimatum was quoted as saying.

"It is found that saboteurs are attempting to commit destructive acts so as to undermine the rule of law and peace and stability while the government is speeding up peace and stability and rehabilitation for returning to normal," it said, adding that in some townships in the Rakhine state, groups are attempting to commit robbery and riot with the use of swords, bayonets and percussion lock firearms.

A series of renewed riot in Rakhine state, which lasted for more than a week since Oct. 21, has left 32,231 people homeless.

The death toll was updated to 89 while 136 people were wounded as of Oct. 30.

During the latest riot, 5,351 houses were burnt down in arson fire. Earlier figures also show that 14 religious buildings and eight rice mills were also destroyed by fire.

Wednesday's press statement by the President's Office warned that the communal riot was found to involve arms which threatened the security forces undertaking law enforcement duties, saying that some evidences were seized over the armed involvement of the rioters linking with political organizations, peace groups, domestic and foreign organizations who are manipulating behind the riot.

Individuals and organizations in this connection are under investigation and legal action will be taken against them, the statement said.

The statement called for cooperation in peaceful resolvement of the issue.

The riot, which spread from Minbya to as many as nine areas covering Mrauk U, Kyauk Phyu, Myaebon, Yathedaung, Kyauktaw, Pauktaw, Yanbye and Thandwe, has been reportedly put under control on Oct. 27 and the situation there is returning to normalcy ,

The authorities had claimed that legal actions have been taken against 1,058 persons involved in the communal violence from June 8 to Oct. 26 which undermined the stability of the Rakhine state.

Rakhine state has been declared since June 10 a state of emergency along with imposition of dusk-to-dawn curfew in six prior townships -- Maungtaw, Buthidaung, Sittway, Thandwe, Kyaukphyu and Yanbye.

The curfew was extended to Kyauktaw on Aug. 8 and then to Minbya and Mrauk U on Oct. 22 bringing the total number of townships under curfew to nine so far. Endi

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