War spreads out in Kachin State of BurmaBy Zin Linn Jun 16, 2011 12:02AM UTC
People are extremely worried about widespread of war on China-Burma border nowadays.
With the aim of avoiding Burmese Army’s penetration, the Kachin Independence Army (KIA) has blown up two key bridges in Northern Shan State on June 14 night, quoting KIA officers in Loikang-based Brigade 4, Kachin News Group [KNG] said.
The destroyed bridges were known as Nam Hpak Ka Bridge on Mandalay-Muse Road which is Burma’s main trade route with the Chinese border Ruili (Shweli). Another one is Nam Hkrai Bridge situated on the Tamonye-Mongsi road, added KIA officers.
A day after the KIA declared civil war, the two bridges have been destroyed as part of a intended military strategy. The declaration came after the Brunese armed forces attacked the KIA’s Battalion 15 in N’mawk Township, Manmaw (Bhomaw) district in Kachin State on June 9.
Besides, the KIA and the Burmese soldiers also clashed at the Burmese government’s Shweli Dam (Hydropower) No. 1 site on Shweli River.
Moreover, KIA’s Battalion 27 engaged Burmese Battalion No. 144 of the North East Command. The skirmish began at 9 p.m. yesterday. Additionally, combating started last night between Burmese troops and KIA’s Battalion 8 and 9 in Northern Shan State, said local KIA officers.
The two KIA battalions are under the command of the Loikang-based KIA’s Brigade 4 in Northern Shan State. Battalion 8 is stationed between Nam Hkam and Nam Hpak Ka towns while Battalion 9 is situated in Dak Nai near Kutkai Township. The skirmishing in those two spots continues today, referring local KIA officers KNG reported.
Meanwhile, approximately 30 Chinese nationals, who were trapped for several days in a hydropower station as armed conflicts occur in Kachin state, have been escaped to China.
The Chinese workers at the Taping Hydropower Station were ensnared and unable to leave last week when war broke out between Burmese soldiers and the revolutionary KIA troops.
Until yesterday the KIA had blocked the road between Taping and the nearby Chinese border to stop Burmese reinforcements reaching the most important combat zone in Momauk township.
La Nan, joint-general secretary of the KIA’s political wing, the Kachin Independence Organization, said that the workers had “left open all the flood gates in the dam to minimize damage to the power station, completely stopping its circulation”.
The KIA encircled the power station on 10 June. Then, it had agreed to let a unit of Burmese troops to ensure about the Chinese workers and hydro-gauge whether any damage had occurred to facilities. The army unit afterward declined to leave. As a result, prompt fighting between government soldiers and the encircling Kachin soldiers.
Burmese unit commander Colonel Aung Du and some of his soldiers were hit by artillery shells and sent to Bhamo hospital. No Chinese workers were injured, quoting the KIA officials KNG said.
The Taping dam is one of more than 40 hydropower projects in Burma backed by China, and is being built by the China Datang Corporation (CDT) and the Burmese government.
According to local sources, following offensive stepping up, Zahkung Ting Ying and Waw Lau have been put under house-arrest by Burmese government early this week. Ting Ying is a representative of current National Parliament and former leader of the dissolved New Democratic Army-Kachin (NDA-K). Waw Lau is former Military Chief of Staff, in Kachin State capital Myitkyina, said sources close to the two former NDA-K leaders. The NDA-K was transformed to Border Guard Force (BGF) under Burmese Army in November, 2009.
The two former NDA-K leaders have been forbidden from travelling by Brig-Gen Zeyar Aung of the Burma Army’s Northern Regional Command, referring relatives KNGsaid.
Zahkung Ting Ying had totally dissolved NDA-K armed group and serving as a representative of National Parliament of Burma in accordance with the government policy. Though the NDA-K was dissolved, the two leaders still have influence over the three BGF battalions transformed from the NDA-K, said sources close to them.
As said by the Kachin News Group, Zahkung Ting Ying and Waw Lau reached to an agreement with the Burmese government that their BGF troops will not be deployed for civil war but only to engage foreign enemies. However, at the moment the Burmese government has reneged on the agreement. It is sending BGF troops to fight the Kachin Independence Army (KIA) at its Laiza headquarters.
Political analysts and observers have been deeply concerned about widespread of war in Kachin State. Now, people have been blaming Thein Sein government’s breaking of every promise with the ethnic ceasefire groups.
The regime’s miscalculation on handling the Kachin issue seems pushing the country into an abysmal gorge of tragedies. Burma’s new military offensives on the Kachin, Karen and Shan armed groups will lead the nation also into a severe poverty trap.
Finally, Thein Sein government shows its true nature that it will not go along democratic path instead it defends military-dictatorship system through an alternative style.