A pick-up truck carrying a commander of the Border Guard Force and troops was attacked by an unknown armed group on the old Myawaddy-Kawkareik Road last week – no casualties were reported.
The incident happened on the 2nd February, 2016 at about 4 pm when a pick-up truck ridden by the commander of the BGF battalion #1016 and his soldiers, traveling near Shwe Nyaung Bin, was attacked with two controlled anti-personnel mines and by gun shots.
A BGF officer (who asked not to be named) told Karen News that the truck ridden by Major Soe Soe, Commander of BGF battalion #1016 and 10 soldiers was attacked, but no one was wounded.
Speaking to Karen News, the officer said.
“We were attacked on our way back from Taung Thone Lone to Kyaung Shar Gone before Tadar Nyinaung. The first mine didn’t explode, but the second one did when we had passed the spot. Then they attacked with small arms and ran away. Our car was hit by two bullets but no one was wounded.”
Although there was a skirmish between BGF battalion #1017 and the newly re-formed the Democratic Kayin Buddhist Army (DKBA) near the areas, the DKBA officially issue a statement on February 3, claiming their soldiers was not involved in the current attack.
Colonel Saw San Aung from the DKBA said; “The place where the incident occurred is where the government forces and BGF are densely deployed. And it is at the time when we are being chased by them. Since we fought with them a few days ago, we have to be very careful and we cannot go into that area now. If we enter, it’s difficult to withdraw. I think it is an intentional attempt to evoke conflict among our people.”
The area where the incident happened is ripe for conflict as it comes under the operational areas of government troops, BGF battalion #1016 and #1017. However, every armed groups in the area has access to the territory. Due to the constant fighting between the armed groups, local villagers are caught in a hard place – the armed groups always blame each other for the conflicts.
Since the conflict started on the 2nd of July 2015 on the new Myawaddy-Kawkareik Asia Highway between government forces and DKBA over territorial dispute, fighting has continue, but on a smaller scale. As many as 2,000 civilians affected by the recent conflict have been displaced and many of them still unable to return to their homes.