An explosion went off in Rakhine state's Buthidaung township at approximately 10:30 (local time) on Tuesday, January 7, killing four children and injuring six other people. The cause of the explosion is unclear, although military officials reportedly believe it was caused by a landmine.
A heightened security presence is expected in the area over the coming hours and days. Similar incidents are possible in Rakhine state over the near term.
Violence resumed in early December 2018 between Rakhine separatists and the military. The Arakan Army seeks greater autonomy for Buddhists in Rakhine state. According to the Myanmar office of the UN Office for the Coordination of Human Affairs (OCHA), about 7500 displaced people are scattered across 29 sites in Rakhine due to violence and 730,000 people in neighboring Bangladesh.
Individuals in Rakhine state are advised to monitor developments to the situation, remain vigilant for militant and military activity, and adhere to instructions issued by local authorities and their home governments.
Travelers are advised to avoid all but essential travel to Rakhine state, except the southern townships of Kyaukpyu, Ramree, Munaung, Toungup, Thandwe (including the tourist resort of Ngapali), and Gwa.