A heated disagreement among two officers in the Burmese army turned deadly on October 12, leading to the deaths of 3 army personnel and a local guide at Mung Lung in the Mongkoe (Munggu) region of Northern Shan State, the Kachin News Group has learned.
A sergeant from Infantry Battalion (IB) No. 69 and a newly transferred captain began to argue with each other over the latter's deployment to the frontline where the army is carrying out operations against the Kachin Independence Organization (KIO). After exchanging words, both men ended up shooting at each other, according to a Burmese solider familiar with the incident.
“After arguing, they began to shot at each other and the captain's hands were hit. Two soldiers and one guide died from the gunfire. The sergeant then shot and killed himself”, the soldier told KNG.
Government forces in the Mongkoe (or Munggu) region are comprised of units from IB No. 45, 69 and 123. The government side is also supported by troops from two local militias, T. Hkun Myat’s Kutkai militia and the Mungbaw militia led by Du Mun.
According to a KIA officer based in the area, 500 government troops have recently been sent to northern Shan State to reinforce army positions in the area. Fighting between the Kachin resistance and the Burmese military has been heavy in KIO territory in northern Shan State along a stretch of land slated to be the route of twin oil and gas pipelines that will bring fuel from Burma's Arakan coast to China's Yunnan province.