More than 30 regime soldiers of the Light Infantry Division 88 from Katha Township have been killed during nine days of fighting with the People’s Defence Forces from Htigyaing Township, according to the armed group’s own account.
After the fighting in Sagaing Region claimed many lives from 24 November to 2 December, the military retaliated with airstrikes on over 400 houses in Hsupok Chaung, Ingyin Kon, Alaetaw, Intein and Lay Tha, a PDF fighter has told KNG. Over 200 of the houses targeted by the soldiers were in Lay Tha, one of the larger villages that was attacked twice.
“They suffered many casualties during the 9 days of fighting. When they got tired and ran out of ammunition, some of the locals attacked them with knives and sticks and forced them to flee the area,” he said. At this point, the regime launched four airstrikes on 27, 28 and 30 November on the villages of Alaetaw, Ingyin Kon and Lay Tha.
More than 7,000 civilians from the villages about 12 miles from Htigyaing town have sought shelter from the fighting in Buddhist monasteries as violence has increased in the area, another PDF soldier said. Some of them have lost their homes and everything they own in the airstrikes.