At least four civilians, including a child, were injured by regime shelling during fighting with the Kachin Independence Army (KIA) in Kutkai Township, northern Shan State.
A Burma Army (BA) shell struck a house while they were inside in Maw Hake on Tuesday during clashes with KIA Brigade 6 (Battalion 9) at the Asia World Toll Gate on the Kutkai-Lashio highway near the village.
”We were all very terrified and hid in the bunker,” a local man told KNG, asking that his name not be mentioned for fear of reprisals. He said the fighting occurred between 7:30pm and 9pm and that the wounded child is receiving medical treatment at Kutkai Public Hospital.
”I do not know why the BA always fires artillery,” the man said.
Maung Hpoung Ram Naw San Nan, who is only 7 years old, suffered injuries to his thigh, knee and heel. At the time of going to press, the KNG could not confirm the condition of the other three villagers.
Over 300 regime soldiers are stationed between Nam Hpakka and Kutkai in the township of the same name.
The fighting began after BA launched an offensive in the morning and intensified at Kawng San Hill around 1pm. Two regime fighter planes attacked the KIA camp at around 2:30pm. The BA shelled the KIA with artillery from its Nam Hpakkar base from 9am to 9:30am.
A resident said that the fighting took place very close to the village.
”Locals were very scared,” he explained.
Fighting between the regime and the KIA often takes place between Kutkai town and Nam Phetkar, where BA regularly patrols.