A man collecting bamboo was injured by a concealed landmine on a road between two villages where rival ethnic armed groups are fighting in Kyaukme Township, northern Shan State.
According to a youth from an organisation that helps civilians injured by landmines, the 50-year-old victim is supporting his six children alone after his wife died two months ago. With only $11, the man was unable to pay his own medical bills for injuries to his right arm and hip sustained in the blast between Mang Aw and Nam Mang villages on Tuesday 15 March.
“People rarely walk on the road because landmines are often laid there. They’re usually detonated by animals,” said a Kyaukme Red Cross volunteer who took the victim to the Kyaukme Public Hospital before the man was taken to Lashio.
Earlier this month, one youth was killed and another seriously injured after detonating a hidden landmine. The young men set off the hidden bomb while fishing near Takper Kham between Buhkar and Ner Hkaw near Union Highway, between Lashio and Mandalay.
In January this year, clashes broke out near the villages between the Restoration Council of Shan State (RCSS) and members of the Northern Alliance, the Shan State Progress Party (SSPP) and the Ta’ang National Liberation Army (TNLA).
Two women who stepped on a landmine near Nawng Woe on 12 February are still in hospital.
Two civilians displaced by the fighting accidentally stepped on a landmine while returning to their house in Kyin Thi, where the RCSS fought with the SSPP and TNLA in Hsipaw Township in January.