Burmese Army Threatens Use of Force to Take Census in KIO Area

By KLN

Friday, April 04, 2014

Burmese military trucks
Burmese military trucks

About 1000 troops from Burmese army’s Magway-based 88th Light Infantry Division (LID) and Theinni-based 16th Military Operation Command (MOC-16) on Wednesday arrived near Man Win Gyi village in Kachin-Shan border and surrounded the village which hosts thousands of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs).

A local aid worker says the Burmese army troops prepared to launch a major offensive against KIA troops to take census of people living in KIO-controlled area surrounding Man Win Gyi village. “Burmese army’s officers have threatened KIA local officers that if they don’t allow to take census, they will use force to take census in KIA-controlled area”, said the aid worker.

A mix of Kachin, Shan, Chinese and other races live in Man Win Gyi area located a few miles from China-Burma border. A local KIA officer says they have allowed Shan leaders living in KIO-controlled territories to take census by themselves and deliver census information to Burmese authorities in order to avoid direct confrontation against Burmese army.

Kachin IDPs living in temporary camps – Man Win Pa, Lagat Yang and Lana Zup Ja – near Man Win Gyi area had fled from Kawng Ja, Mungding Pa, Mahkaw Yang, Nam Hpu and Namlim Pa in Mansi Township as battles raged between KIA and Burmese army troops in last November. Most IDPs have already been displaced twice since the renewed war began in June 2011.

Naw Din of the Karuna Myanmar Social Service said, “tension between the two parties is at highest level now. I am afraid of hearing a third displacement.”