Saturday, January 5, 2013

Burmese media claim army overran KIO base


Friday, 04 January 2013 12:59 Khin Myo Thwe

Burma’s state-run media have run articles on Thursday saying that the Burmese army, supported by air cover, seized Point-771 hill and its surrounding area near Laja Yang from the Kachin Independence Army (KIA) on December 30.

A lone Kachin soldier stands guard. (Photo : Mizzima)

The KIA is the armed wing of the Kachin Independence Organization (KIO) which has opposed Burma’s central government for decades, calling for autonomy for Kachin State.

Burmese media have been largely quiet about the conflict in Kachin State, and only this week admitted that government forces were conducting air strikes on KIA positions.

In the attack, the Burmese army seized a 120-mm mortar, a 60-mm mortar, 270 hand grenades, 52 landmines, 4,000 bullets and 13 other weapons, the reports said, stressing that the hill was being used by the KIA to launch attacks on government forces.

Delegations from Naypyitaw have signed ceasefires with 10 armed groups and held peace negotiations with the KIA 11 times, Burmese media said, and have acquiesced to Kachin demands to resolve issues related to military outposts.
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