Ten other people were injured when a man on motorcycle threw the grenade at patrolling policemen during the celebration in Kyone Doe town, Kawkareik district, late Sunday, according to U San Shwe, a member of the town funeral service assistance association.
“We sent the victims to Hpa-an for treatment,” he said. “All of them died while being treated at the hospital.”
U San Shwe said the attack happened at the entrance to the town market where the celebration was being held to welcome the end of the rainy season.
“I feel sorry for the victims. This was the first time such violence has happened in our peaceful town. It was quite crowded with revellers from nearby villages who came to celebrate with us,” he said. “A son of my friend was among the dead. He was only about 20.”
U Aung Myint Oo, a town resident, said no other details were known about the attack or suspect.
“We were giving a charity feast 500 metres away from the scene. We rushed there as soon as we heard the explosion,” he said. “Several residents suffered injuries and are being treated at hospital.”
U Myint Zaw, a member of the ruling National League for Democracy in Kawkareik, said the grenade exploded near a police patrol car.
“It exploded in the air. The police vehicle was used to bring the injured to hospital,” he said. “It was chaotic when we arrived at the hospital. Nobody knew what happened.”
He said the bodies of the three policemen who died will be cremated on Wednesday while the civilian who died was cremated on Tuesday.
Each victim’s family received K600,000 (US$395) in cash from the state Social Welfare and Immigration Department.