Two Red Cross volunteers shot in troubled Kokang


A wounded Red Cross volunteer lies on ground after vehicles of a civilian rescue convoy were attacked by Kokang rebels near the self-administered Kokang capital Laukkai, northern Shan State, Myanmar, February 17, 2015. Two volunteers from the Myanmar Red Cross Society were injured in the convoy attack. Photo: Lynn Bo Bo

A wounded Red Cross volunteer lies on ground after vehicles of a civilian rescue convoy were attacked by Kokang rebels near the self-administered Kokang capital Laukkai, northern Shan State, Myanmar, February 17, 2015. Two volunteers from the Myanmar Red Cross Society were injured in the convoy attack. Photo: Lynn Bo Bo

In what is said to be the first attack against the Myanmar Red Cross, two Red Cross volunteers were shot when a convoy carrying war refugees was attacked on February 17.

Lower House MP U Haw Shauk Chan of Kunlong Township told Mizzima that a vehicle with a Red Cross flag in the convoy was ambushed near Laukkai on February 17 and two people were injured. 

The ruling Union Solidarity and Development Party MP said that the convoy left from Laukkai for Kunlong and was shot at in Lonehtan.

He said he thought that the attackers might be Kokang fighters, noting that the two injured men were taken to hospital.

U Haw Shauk Chan said: “A person was wounded [by a bullet] to the abdomen. But his injury is not fatal. Another person’s eye was injured by broken glass. Now they are in the Kunlong Hospital. Their injuries are not fatal.”

The aid convoy was carrying more than 100 people including media personnel. 

An editor of the 7Day Daily newspaper told Mizzima that two of its correspondents were on a vehicle in the convoy but they were safe.

Since February 9, intense fighting has occurred in Laukkai, northeastern Shan State, between government forces and the Kokang armed group, Myanmar National Democratic Alliance Army, (MNDAA) led by Phone Kya Shin aka Pheung Kya-shin.

The government army and the Kokang armed group agreed a ceasefire in 1989. In September 2009, fighting broke out between Myanmar government army and the Kokang armed group when government forces launched a drug raid and Phone Kya Shin had to flee to over the border into China.

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