A driver, transporting Coronavirus test samples for the World Health Organisation (WHO), in Myanmar’s conflict-torn Rakhine state, was shot and killed on Tuesday, after his vehicle was attacked, state media reported.
Pyae Sone Win Maung was killed in what the United Nations called a “security incident” in Rakhine’s Minbya township.
A passenger, who was with him, also got injured in the incident.
The state-run Global New Light of Myanmar newspaper, blamed the attack on the rebel Arakan Army, while the rebels blamed the Myanmar military.
The UN said in a statement that it “is seeking further information on the circumstances of the incident’’.
“We extend our deepest condolences to the family of our colleague,’’ it added.
The vehicle, which was marked with the UN logo, was carrying samples from suspected COVID-19 patients from Rakhine’s capital, Sittwe, to be tested in Yangon, Myanmar’s largest city.
Fighting between the two groups has raged in the coastal region since early 2019, displacing tens of thousands of people.
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About 350,000 people in “dangerously overcrowded” displacement camps across Myanmar are at risk of a major outbreak of the pandemic, human rights watch warned last month.
They include 130,000 Rohingya, who have been confined behind barbed wire in open air camps, since being forced from their homes by extremist Buddhist mobs in 2012.