42 Battles, 21 Artillery attacks, and 15 Bomb Attacks Recorded in September and October

42 battles, 21 artillery attacks, and 15 bomb attacks have been recorded between Kachin Independence Army (KIA) troops and Burmese Army troops since the beginning of September 2015. Most battles occurred in northern Shan State and southern Kachin State.

According to frontline sources, Burmese Army Infantry Battalions involved in fighting in southern Kachin State are 15th LIB, 47th, 48th LIB, 86th LIB, 105th LIB, 121st LIB, 276th LIB, 318th LIR, 319th LIR, 438th LIR, 601st LIR, and 602nd LIR.

KIA’s 1st, 12th, 15th and 27th Battalion troops under 3rd Brigade were involved in battles in southern Kachin State.

In northern Shan State, Burmese Army’s Infantry Battalions from 77th LID, 88th LID, and 99th LID participated in battles against KIA’s 8th, 9th, 29th, 34th, 36th, and 39th Battalions during one and a half month period.

KIA troops had to withdraw from their positions at Lung Ja Hkyet post, Mali Zup Post, Shawng Htawk Post, Dan Sa Pa, and Hka Lum Kawng Post in southern Kachin State, and Loi Jung Bum and 34th Battalion headquarters in northern Shan State.

One of the reasons, according to a KIA officer, that Burmese Army launched attacks on KIA positions in southern Kachin State is because of a brief detention of Daw Sein Tin and Lazing Hkawn Hpang who are related to Burmese Army troops on drug dealing charges. Pat Jasan, local anti-drug campaign, members briefly detained the two women and warned them to stop dealing drugs.
A local observer said Burmese Army intended to choke off KIA’s funding sources by seizing border trade routes in southern Kachin State.

Mansi residents sent a letter to Kachin State’s prime minister on Sept 25 asking to stop Burmese Army’s artillery fire from a pagoda hill, located right in the middle of the city. On the contrary, Myawaddy News reported on Sept 26 that local residents requested Burmese Army to protect them from KIA troops who have been firing on their homes, and abusing them.