Junta Launches Offensives Ahead Of Polling In Karenni State

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By Blessing/Kantarawaddy Times

The regime appears to be trying to seize more territory before polling starts for Burma’s general election, a Karenni political analyst said about increased military offensives in Karenni State and across the country. The source, who requested anonymity, said the military wants to regain control of fifty percent of the Southeast Asian country that they have lost to resistance forces.

“Min Aung Hlaing wants the UN to recognise his government as legitimate” and to do that he must controls at least half of the country, which he’ll try to do with air and ground forces. The military chief and coup leader wants to fulfil his dream and become president. He plans to use the ‘proportional representation rather than whats known as the ‘fist past the post’ that happened in the 2010, 2025 and 2020 polls.

After the coup, the military arrested and jailed members of the democratic government.

The source assumes that fighting will escalate throughout the country during the dry season and that if the military captures enough land, it’ll be able to hold polling. However, the Karenni resistance has stated that it will not allow any parties to campaign in the areas they control.

“If they send more troops to Karenni State before the election, the fighting will get worse and there will be more clashes,” says Khu Nye Reh , the interior minister of the Karenni National Progressive Party.

A Karenni Nationalities Defence Force officer said, “The military has launched offensives against Karenni resistance groups in Loikaw and Demawso townships because they want to control the major towns in Karenni State.” He expects that after they gain control, they will start preparing for the polls and urged civilians not to participate in this process.

In regime-controlled areas of the state controlled by the regime, election staff have started collect voters’ names and will continue making home visits until 31 January.

“They have taken over power from the civilian government and now they want to become a legitimate government. I am sure the upcoming general elections will not be fair and will have no value—it’s just a political exit door for them,” said Banyar, the director of Karenni Human Rights Group. He said they will not have the support of the international community or the people of Burma.

In Karenni State, more than two-thirds of the population has been displaced by junta offensives and fighting with resistance forces.

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