Villagers Concerned About Fighting Escalating In Loikaw Township

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Photo – Free Burma Ranger

By Kantarawaddy Times

Villagers fear fighting will increase after the Burma Army (BA) launched an offensive against Karenni Army (KA) and Karenni Nationalities Defense Army (KNDA) in Loilan Lay sub township, Karenni State.

“Everyone is worried for their safety because they (BA) have not retreated and are now sending reinforcement troops to the area,” a local told Kantarawaddy Times.

The KNDF spokesperson predicted that the conflict will intensify in the coming days, adding that they have little choice but to resist the military. ”We have to fight them. If we do not, the next generation will suffer,” he explained.

”We understand that the locals will face many difficulties, and I want to encourage them to be brave because I do not think the fighting will end soon. They need to be careful when they travel.”

According to the spokesperson, more than 5,000 people from 11 villages in the sub township in Loikaw Township have fled into the jungle. Fighting has been constant in the area for the past two days.

Many who fled their homes on short notice have no food, said a man who shared what he has with villagers affected by the fighting. ”They would like to return home, but they are far too scared.”

Artillery fire from the BA damaged at least eleven houses in Kun Ner village on August 28. The same day, the KNDF reported capturing weapons, ammunition and other military equipment in some of the four clashes. On Sunday, the civilian resistance group claimed they and KA had killed at least seven BA soldiers and wounded many more.

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