Kachin residents fear further imminent attacks

A series of skirmishes have taken place between Kachin Independence Army and Burmese Government Army in recent days despite the prospect of a meeting in Chinese border town Ruili where withdrawal of government troops invaded in Kachin territory will be discussed. Burmese army’s increased presence has been reported from various local sources. All Burma Students Democratic Front (ABSDF), an ally of KIA, said Burmese army has been transporting military equipment and supplies to its base in Sinbo by helicopters. Local residents say movements of government troops indicate that they are preparing for what they fear further imminent attacks on Kachin.

Fresh clashes between KIA’s 12th battalion under 3rd Brigade and Burmese army’s 15th LIB have broken out as the two sides encountered at an area located between Nam Sa village and Gaw Bum Maji Gung village on Oct 24, 2012.  The two sides fought at least three times from 3 am to 2:30 pm.

KIA’s 24th battalion under 5th Brigade fought against Burmese army’s 124th LIR between Nam Wai village and Hpak Ke village on Oct 23 at 11:30 am. No known casualties have been reported from both sides.

A fierce battle took place between KIA’s 3rd battalion under 5th Brigade and Burmese army’s 416th LIB at Lahpai village in Sadung Township on Oct 21 at 8 am. At least 6 Burmese government soldiers were killed and one wounded in this battle, reported a front line source.

Another battle took place between KIA’s 19th battalion under 5th Brigade and a Burmese army column between at U Htang Yang near Loi Jaw hill on Oct 19 at 11 am. The skirmish broke out as KIA troops deterred a Burmese army column which was accompanied by 11 military trucks. Burmese army unit was moving its base from Dawhpum Yang village to Num Lang village. A local source reported that Burmese army soldiers forced Dawhpum Yang village men to become members of Burmese army-backed People militia group to fight against KIA. Local villagers who refused to join government-backed militia had to pay 500,000 kyats or 150 ton of raw rice, said source.

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