The ongoing war between Burmese Army and Kachin Independence Army (KIA) has begun in June 9 of this year by Burmese military’s attack on KIA’s Sanggang post. As battles took place in Kachin areas and well-known terrain for Kachin soldiers, KIA has inflicted heavy casualties on Burmese Army troops since the war has started. As a result, Burmese Army resorted to use mortar and artillery shells filled with chemical agents in recent battles. Chemical weapons were first used in a battle near Gara-yang and Shwe Nyaung Pin on Oct 28, 2011. Kachin people army’s soldiers reported that they suffered from nausea, dizziness and vomiting after inhaling smoke from artillery shells. KIA soldiers at N-tap hill also said they had similar experiences after inhaling fumes from bomb shells.
On Nov 10, Burmese Army again used its chemical agent-filled artillery shells against KIA’s 3rd Brigade in a battle near Tapein electrical plant at Sanggang village. Burmese Army began shelling KIA’s post at about 10:00 am with mortars and artilleries. An artillery shell landed about 15 feet away from 3 KIA soldiers and smell coming out of landed shell was different from usual one, said KIA frontline sources. Immediately after inhaling smoke from artillery shell, 3 KIA soldiers suffered from nausea, dizziness and itchiness. Their breathing became irregular and they started vomiting to the point of passing out. One KIA soldier was taken to the Army hospital and is in serious condition, said a KIA source.