- Title: MYANMAR: Locals fear continued sectarian violence
- Date: 29th October 2012
- Summary: ROHINGYA CHILDREN
- Embargoed: 13th November 2012 12:00
- Location: Myanmar
- Country: Myanmar
- Topics: Crime
- Reuters ID: LVA3KRHEN1BYXE0ZWBH5N3VM59F0
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- Story Text: Muslim survivors of six days of sectarian violence in western Myanmar say they still fear being subject of sectarian violence and that the situation in Mrauk-U town is tense.
Many locals had to flee bullets and burning homes to escape on fishing boats after an attack by once-peaceable Rakhine neighbours.
The United Nations said 22,587 people had now been displaced after unrest between Muslim Rohingyas and Buddhist Rakhines claimed at least 84 lives i n Rakhine State and tested the reformist mettle of the quasi-civilian government that replaced Myanmar's oppressive ruling junta last year.
"We had no problems before. We (Muslim Rohingya and Buddhist native Rakhine) visited each other like brothers. But at that day, while I was sitting here they (Buddhist Rakhine) came in our village and started to torch the houses," said one Muslim man, Bardu, who is 50 years old.
Kyaw Maung, the leader at the Rakhine village said all Muslims in the region were now viewed as the "enemy".
"I want the Rohingyas to stay away from us. Eventhough it was not us who attack them, they see us as their enemy now."
New York-based Human Rights Watch earlier released before-and-after satellite images showing the near total devastation of the Kyaukpyu's Muslim quarter.
Located about 120 kilometres (75 miles) south of the Rakhine State capital Sittwe, Kyaukpyu is crucial to China's most strategic investment in Myanmar: twin pipelines that will carry oil and natural gas from the Bay of Bengal to China's energy-hungry western provinces.
The government estimates nearly 3,000 homes have been destroyed across in Rakhine State since Oct. 21.
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