KLN frontline sources reported that heavy battles are raging around Laja-yang and Nalung villages located near Kachin administrative capital Laiza. KIA’s capital security forces and Burmese Army soldiers from 388th LIR under MOC (3) and Momauk-based 320th LIR under MOC (21) have been fighting for the whole day on May 17.
A combined force of KIA troops and All Burmese Student Democratic Force (Northern) overrun strategic Burmese Army post in Laja-yang on April 27. Burmese Army soldiers have moved to a nearby higher mountain since their base has been seized. A series of fierce battles took place as more reinforcements came to aid those soldiers left on the mountain and try to recapture former post in Laja-yang.
Burmese Army reportedly fired several rounds of 105 mm shells from its Hkangkai hill base to Na Lung and Laja Yang villages beginning 6 am on May 17. Laiza residents say they can clearly hear the sound of Burmese Army artillery fire. Most artillery shells fell on forested areas between Laja-yang and Laiza. KIA sources say that ABSDF (North) soldiers joined them in this battle against Burmese Army.
Since fighting in areas close to Laiza began, the road between Laiza and Bahmo has temporarily been closed. A Laiza resident says that though the sound of artillery firing was heard almost the whole day on Thursday, Laiza residents carry on with their normal daily lives as usual.