Battles spread across Kachin and northern Shan State as the technical advisory teams from KIO and Burmese government prepare for a meeting next week in Myitkyina. A series of intense battles raging across Kachin region between Kachin Independence Army (KIA) and Burmese Army in areas under KIA’s 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th Brigades, except in KIA’s 5th Brigade area around KIO administrative capital Laiza.
A battle took place between KIA’s 12th Battalion troops and Burmese army’s 323rd Light Infantry Battalion (LIB) troops at Nam Hpang Hka Hku near Kawng Ja village in Mansi Township on Sept 11 at 6 am. The two sides encountered again at around 9 am at Lung Bra near Nam Hpang Hka Hku.
On the same day, KIA’s 12th Battalion troops launched a counter-attack on Burmese army positions at Kawng Ja, Bum Sen and Lung Bra at around 1 pm as Burmese army troops prepared for another offensive operation on KIA’s 12th Battalion positions. Another group of KIA troops under 12thBattalion encountered a combined force of Burmese army’s 323rd LIB and 522nd LIR under Military Operation Command (MOC) -16 near Mung Ding Pa village in southern Kachin State.
In the same area on Sept 11, Kachin people militia’s (MHH) 27th Battalion troops fought against Burmese army’s 522nd LIB troops at 8:05 am. During the battle, Kai Hteik-based Burmese army’s 68th LIR troops assisted 522nd LIB troops by firing 81 mm mortar shells on MHH’s 27thBattalion positions for at least three times.
Similar battle took place between Magyeng and Kawng Ja as another Burmese army battalion, 507th LIB, approached KIA’s 12th Battalion territory from Maji Kung Kaji passing through Je Hka on Sept 10 at 11:30.
Local sources say more reinforcements came as Burmese army troops continued their offensive operations against KIA’s 12th Battalion. On Sept 11 alone, four military trucks carrying Burmese army soldiers and artillery ammunition headed to Kawng Ja in KIA’s 12th Battalion territory from Bhamo.
As battles intensify in Kachin and northern Shan State, both sides prepare for another round of talks in Kachin State capital. Burmese army used to launch major military operations against KIA whenever the two sides scheduled to meet for talks. Kachin local observers who get tired of seeing the same pattern of military offensives just before talks question Burmese government’s commitment to peace process and national reconciliation.