Fighting occurred between the Democratic Karen Benevolent Army and Burma Army on October 10, forcing Karen villagers to flee.
The latest armed clashes broke out at around 10am between the DKBA and the government’s army at Kaung Mu village in Kawkareik Township.
Sources from the DKBA’s liaison office in Kawkareik said that the fighting lasted about an hour. The fighting involved soldiers from the DKBA’s Klo Htoo Wah Tactical Command and the Burma Army under the Military Operation Command (MOC) #12.
Major Saw Thaye’ Ni, an officer from the DKBA’s liaison office in Kawkareik spoke to Karen News about the fighting.
“They [government troop] started the fight. The fighting lasted until mid-day today [Friday]. We will make more details available after we have an inquiry.”
Mahn Thein Zaw, a local villager in the area told Karen News that four artillery shells fell into Pyar Bin village, a nearby village close to the fighting area, but there were no civilian casualties reported.
Mahn Thein Zaw said two DKBA soldiers and one villager from Ywa Tan Shay were arrested by government troop while traveling from Ywa Tan Shay to Ta Maing Gone. Residents said the government has increased its military presence in the area.
Saw Maw Htoo, chairperson of KNU’s Kawkareik Township told Karen News that they have got information of four battalions of government troops under MOC #12 sent into Kawkareik Township as reinforcements.
Colonel Aung Lwin, Minister of Karen State Border Security Affair, in an interview with Karen News, commented on the latest fighting.
“In some incidents, it may be a breach of ceasefire agreement. However, Tatmadaw [Burma army] is included in the peace building and they have made their commitment publicly – the Tatmadaw is also implementing the works of peace building.”
On September 27, there was a fighting broke out at South Kyarin village when Burma army troop Light Infantry Battalion 230 under MOC #12 went into South Kyarin village with 12 military trucks and surrounded the home of Major Sein Myint from DKBA Company #3 under Klo Htoo Wah Tactical Command.
On September 29, fighting broke out between the Burma Army and DKBA troops from Company #3 under Klo Htoo Wah Tactical Command. Villagers in the area said that the fighting last about 20 minutes and included both small and heavy weapons. Villagers from Laung Kaing, Thamain Dut, Winka and Tihu Than are frightened by the fighting. Villagers said that around 200 soldiers are now stationed in their region. Villagers said that they now coming under scrutiny from the government troops and are being question about their allegiances to armed groups.