Skirmishes Continue in Western and Southeastern Kachin State, Locals Forced to Serve as Guides For Burmese Army

Skirmishes continue between Kachin Independence Army (KIA) and Burmese army troops in western and southeastern Kachin State.

A battle took place between KIA’s 14th Battalion troops and and Burmese army’s 298th Light Infantry Battalion troops led by Lt. Myat Khaing Tun at Nawng Mi village in Hpakant Township on Aug 24 at 2:40 am. According to a frontline source, KIA troops launched a surprise attack on Burmese troops and the battle lasted for about an hour.

On Aug 25, Burmese army’s Tang Hpre-based troops fired several assault rifle rounds in a provocative way on surrounding area at around 3 pm.

Similarly, Burmese army troops currently based at Hka Ya Bum fired several MG-42 rounds on KIA positions on Aug 25 at 2:30 pm.

In southeastern Kachin State, a skirmish took place between KIA’s 12th Battalion troops and Burmese army’s 437th Light Infantry Regiment (LIR) troops at Nmau Krung Gaji in Momauk Township on Aug 21 at 11:45 am.

As tensions remained high, local Kachin villagers have been increasingly targeted and abused by Burmese army troops and members of local Pyithutsits (militia units backed by Burmese army).

A source in Ka-maing reported that a combined force of Burmese army’s 254th LIB troops and local Pyithutsits detained two Kachin women from Htoi San Yang village and brought them as guides on the way towards Wang Bum on Aug 21. The two women were later released in the evening.

Similarly, Burmese army troops currently based at Loi Seng detained two Kachin men and forced them to serve as guides on the way to Jan Mai Pa on Aug 21 at around 1 pm. The two men were released on the same day around 6 pm.

On Aug 25, Dashi La Seng, a Sawng Hka villager, was detained by Burmese army’s 252nd LIB troops for possession of two handmade muskets. He was arrested while working in his own rice field and later taken to Sawng Hka monastery.