The Tatmadaw shelled civilian wards in Laiza in Kachin State with artillery July 3, according to the Kachin Independence Organisation (KIO).
Col Naw Bu, the KIO spokesperson, told KNG that at night the Burma Army (BA) fired at least 10 shells at the ethnic armed organisation’s (EAO) de facto headquarters located along the Chinese border.
“They attacked civilian wards instead of attacking Kachin Independence Army (KIA) positions in Laiza. We find this strange.”
Although locals reported some of the shells landed in China, KIO couldn’t confirm this information.
Attacks against civilians in areas of Kachin State where the Tatmadaw are not in conflict with KIA have increased since the end of July after the EAO has executed a series of ambushes that have resulted in multiple causalities.
West of Laiza, BA’s IB-58 based in Waingmaw town, attacked homes in the township with the same name with artillery on the evenings of August 2 and 3, according to locals.
In Mogaung Township, about 30 soldiers opened fire on villagers in Don Bon and Namti town at about 6pm on August 3, causing some residents to flee their homes.
In Hpakant Township’s Ginsi village, residents said soldiers based there indiscriminately fired artillery at them.
After KIA soldiers attacked a BA base on July 29, killing several sentries and wounding many more, the military retaliated by shelling a part of Waingmaw Township where there were not any Kachin soldiers. A shell landed on the grounds of KEP Logistics Co Ltd, in Laban village, instantly killing employee Aung Li, 36, and seriously injuring another staff.
BA’s attacks have also killed livestock and damaged people’s homes.