Burma War: Battles continue in Northern Shan and Kachin State

Fierce fighting continues between Kachin Independence Army and Burmese government’s army with casualties increasing, but a political solution is still far from sight.

A fierce fighting between KIA’s 9th Battalion under 4th Brigade and Burmese Army’s Nampaka-based 123rd LIB under North Eastern Regional Military Command took place on the road between Nampaka town and Humaing village on May 29 at 9 am. Burmese Army later withdraws its troops to Nampaka after suffering high casualties, reported a frontline source.

On May 28, KIA’s troops under 5th Brigade have fought against Burmese Army’s soldiers under 40thLIR at Lung Rawk post near Laja Yang.

KIA’s capital security forces deterred an advancing Burmese Army column between Shadan valley and Ntap Hill on May 28 at 8am. Burmese Army’s artillery unit stationed at Gang Dau Yang village reportedly fired several rounds of 105 mm mortar shells into Npawn Hpaga village, said a KIA source.

The two sides met last March at Ruili City in China and made a preliminary agreement to reduce troops in conflict areas. President Thein Sein ordered Burmese Army twice in last December and January to halt military offensives against KIA. But Burmese Army buildups continue and fighting has intensified since then.

Burmese government delegation’s main interest in previous meetings is signing a ceasefire agreement, said a KIO official. Though KIO repeatedly asked Burmese government to honor previous ceasefire agreement by repositioning its troops, Burmese Army shows no signs of abating its offensive war.

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Lahpai Naw Ming, the Kachinland News, received the Citizen of Burma Award, 2012

Lahpai Naw Ming, chief reporter of Kachinland News, was awarded the third Pyitu Gon Yee, the Citizen of Burma Award on the 27th of May, 2012. Lahpai Naw Ming received 51.25 percent of votes out of the overall 513,922 and won the Award.

There were 33 individuals nominated for this award and the last 5 were entered into to ballot poll for popular vote.  The past recipients of this award include U Kyaw Tu (2010), and Daw Shu (2011).

The Kachinland News’ staffs proudly recognizes and congratulates their fellow reporter Lahpai Naw Ming on his achievement for this Award. We wish and pray for his quick recovery from current physical injury. We eagerly hope for his swift return to serve his fellow citizens, resuming his gifted and passionate investigative news reporting.

Naw Ming was injured by the heavy artillery shelled by the Burmese military while reporting at the KIA frontline post, Kawngwai, near Loije on Jan 4, 2012.  He is now currently undergoing medical treatment at a hospital in China.


KIA 9th Brigade ambush government military trucks


Two Burmese officers and four soldiers were killed after Kachin Independence Army (KIA), 9th Battalion, ambushed and destroyed two Burmese military trucks near Nampaka, on the Mandalay-Muse trade route with China, on May 29, according to a KIA officer stationed on the frontline.

There were no KIA casualties.

Burmese military convoys travelling from Mandalay-Muse, one of the region’s largest trading routes, face regular attacks by KIA’s 9th Battalion.

The KIA is attempting to stop the Burmese army from reinforcing their positions near Kachin army posts in Kachin and Northern Shan state.

Heavy fighting between government army columns and KIA’s 34th Battalion, 4th Brigade has been ongoing near Kyaukme for the last four days, according to locals.

KIA bans night transportation on Lashio-Muse road
Kachin Independent Army’s (KIA) 9th Battalion will completely ban night transportation of all vehicles travelling between Lashio and Muse, starting on June 1.

The night ban is aimed to block government troops from entering and attacking KIA’s positions in Northern Shan state and Kachin state, according to KIA officers.

Posters, enforcing the ban, have been placed at key locations along the route, on May 27.

The KIA’s Vice Chief of Staff Brig-Gen Gun Maw told the Democratic Voice of Burma (DVB) radio the ban was not implemented by the central military command. Frontline troops might have enacted the ban for ‘security concerns’.

In the day time, regular transportation is permitted, but military convoys and civilian trucks which carry Burmese soldiers in civilian clothing and carrying military uniforms, or weapons, will be attacked, warned KIA officers.

New Burma peace negotiating team arrives in KIO Kachin State


31.may 2012 
A new peace negotiating team, led by Burmese Railways Minister Aung Min, arrived at Mai Ja Yang, the second largest town under Kachin Independence Army (KIA) in Kachin state, at 3 pm today, according to Kachin Independence Organization (KIO) officials.

The government peace negotiating team received a warm welcome from a KIA security team who escorted them from the government-controlled Loije, Bhamo (or Manmaw) district, in southeastern Kachin state to Mai Ja Yang, a KIA officer told the Kachin News Group (KNG).

The KIO delegation, which included Vice Chief of Staff Brig-Gen Gun Maw, will be led by General Secretary Dr. Laja. He will meet with U Aung Min tomorrow.

The meeting, the first between the KIO and government peace negotiating team in two-months, is intended to be a discussion rather than political negotiations, said a high ranking KIO officer in Mai Ja Yang.

The previous meeting with government peace negotiating team led by U Aung Thaung, in Ruili (or Shweli), in China’s southwest Yunnan province, failed to achieve any lasting results.

U Aung Thaung, who is thought be a hardliner, was not included in the new peace negotiating team.

The peace talks resumed following a meeting between U Aung Min and two KIO officers, Dr. Laja and Brig-Gen Gun Maw in the Thai city Chiang Rai, on May 21.

The government wants to sign a ceasefire with the KIO before they will discuss political solutions to the conflict, which started on June 9, after they ended a 17-year ceasefire. There are an estimated 75,000 Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs), most living in KIO-controlled territories.

The KIO has repeatedly stated they will not sign a ceasefire until government’s troops withdraw from the frontlines.

During the meeting, fighting has temporarily stopped for two days around the 3rd Brigade, where discussions are taking place.

KIO’s chairman Lanyaw Zawng Hra sent a letter to United Nations secretary-general Ban Ki-moon urging the UN to intervene to help negotiate a solution Kachin conflict and support humanitarian aid to Kachin IDPs, on May 15.

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