Mekong killings: SSA Shan State Army wants to help

shan news
Naw Kham

The Shan State Army (SSA)has pledged to lend a helping hand in the resolution of 4-year long issue of drug trafficking and protection racketeering in the Golden Triangle that culminated in the killing of 13 Chinese there last week. One of its senior officers told SHAN its offer to help since 2006 remains open. It came in response to requests from several well wishers. 

Requesting anonymity, the officer said the SSA had offered its cooperation to all countries concerned in the resolution of the drug problem.

However, when it offered to turn over 1.1 million yaba (methamphetamine) pills it had seized on the Mekong on 6 February 2007, there was no country to accept them. “We couldn’t keep them either,” he explained. “So we invited the media to the SSA base (across Chiangrai province) on 6 June 2007 to witness the burning of all the drugs and report to the readers.”

The result of the drug bonfire was the withdrawal of the SSA troops from Burma’s side of the Golden Triangle, which was taken over by the hitherto unknown Naw Kham, who has since became a fixture in the area.


Chinese patrol boat shot up by gunmen believed to be followers of Naw Kham, 25 February 2008

His predecessors: the Mong Tai Army (MTA) of the late Khun Sa, the United Wa State Army (UWSA) and the SSA South all failed in their efforts to set themselves up permanently in the Golden Triangle. All of them were pushed back to where they came from by the Burma Army. But undermanned and underarmed, Naw Kham was able to take control of areas surrounding the Triangle with remarkable ease. “The village headmen and local officials on the banks of Laos, Burma and Thailand seem to support him,” said a businessman in Shan State East. “The Burma Army also seems to be virtually powerless against him.” 

Naw Kham’s shooting spree began in February 2008 with a Chinese police speed boat. Since them all ships that ply the waters of the Mekong from north to south and back have been at the mercy of Naw Kham, a former Burma Army run People’s Militia Force chief in Tachilek.

In the face of this formidable opposition, the SSA officer promises, “With adequate support, moral if not material, from those concerned, we will be able to help maintain peace and drug control along the river.”

WAR: Correction Fighting News” (LIB) 114 and not against IB 287″

12 August 2011
The fight yesterday in Kehsi township was against Nawngkhio-based Light Infanty Battalion (LIB) 114 and not against IB 287 as reported earlier, says the Shan State Army. The battle which began when the Burma Army battalion “deliberately sought out” the SSA took place 7 miles northeast of Kehsi and lasted 5 ½ hours, 12:00-17:30. The attackers retired after sustaining heavy casualties. “We can’t understand why they would want to start a fight like that,” Maj Gen Pang Fa, SSA leader, was quoted as saying. (SHAN)


Burma Army requests return of seized supplies



Due to continual attacks by the Shan State Army (SSA), Burma Army units on the frontline are facing morale and disciplinary problems rising out of the shortage of rations, according to local and SSA sources.

Among those seized by the SSA included rice, onions, eggplants, fish paste, partially rotted fish, dry fish and condensed milk.

The Burmese units dispatched a village headman to ask for the supplies back, saying they had nothing to eat. “We asked the village headman to tell them we were sorry, but we were also facing the same trouble because of their offensive,” an SSA officer wrote to SHAN. “We had nothing to return even if we wanted to, because they were already eaten by our fighters.”

According to the latest information, 6 infantry battalions have been deployed at 2 junctions around Wanhai, the SSA HQ in Kehsi township:

  • Light Infantry Battalion 513 and another infantry battalion, together 179 strong at the Pakhee junction, southeast of Wanhai
  • Light Infantry Battalion (108 strong), Infantry Battalion 287 (83 strong) and two unidentified battalions (105 and 122 strong respectively), totaling 418 strong, at Nampook junction, northwest of Wanhai
SSA fighters on the move

Pakhee can be reached from Monghsu in the east and Mongnawng from the south, while Nampook from Mongyai in the north and Kehsi from the south.

The Burma Army has been deploying several units to provide security for the roads. But so far, they have been producing mixed results, as the SSA, both North and South, have been carrying out typical guerrilla tactics: ambushes, raids, snipings and interdictions.

WAR:22 June 2011 A battle has been going on- “First, they encircled us and then, we encircled them. Then they encircled us again and so on.”

22 June 2011
A battle has been going on since 07:00 until 20:00 yesterday at Ta Pha Hsawng crossing of Lawng river, a tributary of the Pang, between 3 townships: Kehsi, Mongyai and Hsipaw. One of the Shan State Army 27th Brigade’s units was attacked by Mongao-based Infantry Battalion 33. Both sides have been taking a break since until 09:00 this morning, with reinforcements coming to each side. “It’s a sort of encirclement game,” said one officer, “First, they encircled us and then, we encircled them. Then they encircled us again and so on.” (SHAN)

WAR: Gunfire was exchanged between the Shan State Army and the Burma Army this morning

Gunfire was exchanged between the Shan State Army and the Burma Army this morning as soon as reinforcement of the Burma Army troops arrived near SSA controlled territory this week, according to local and SSA sourcesFighting began around 8:00 until the time of reporting at SSA’s Tapha Sawng base, located between Shan State North’s Hsipaw township and Shan State South’s Kehsi township. It is said to be one of the SSA bastions.

“Fire is still coming and going, heavy weapons flying from both sides,” said an SSA officer from Wanhai.

The number and strength of the recently deployed Burma Army troops is unknown but is estimated to be at least 3 battalions. One of them is said to be Infantry Battalion (IB) 147 based in Nawngkaw, Hsipaw Township. Battalions that are active near the IB#147 are Mongnawng based IB # 286, Mongyai based IB 325 and Namlan based Light Infantry Battalion (LIB) # 504.

The SSA has around 30 men and is now asking for reinforcements from its headquarters in Wanhai. Continue reading “WAR: Gunfire was exchanged between the Shan State Army and the Burma Army this morning”

For International MEDIA:Burmese Army using chemical Weapons against Shan

3 June 2011
The Shan State Army’s strategic base in Tangyan township, 7 miles south of Mong Gao, attacked from 05:30 up to the time of this reporting. The Burma Army attackers are using chemical weapons, which on explosion, cause dizziness and nausea, claim the defenders. (SHAN) The SSA withdrew at noon, according to Col Perng Fa, Head of SSA liaison team – Editor

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