Clashes between the Burma army and a combined force of the Kachin Independence Army (KIA) and People’s Defense Force (PDF) continue in Tigyaing Township of Sagaing Region. In addition to firefights between soldiers, the Burma army has launched multiple airstrikes and set-fire to over 1,000 houses across the Township.
On 2 April around 7 a.m. clashes broke out in the area between Thawka and Yadana Aung villages in Tigyaing Township. Around 10 a.m., the Burma army launched airstrikes on KIA and PDF positions.
The Burma army suffered many casualties during the early morning clashes including at least 10 soldiers killed, according to local sources. Two KIA/PDF soldiers suffered minor injuries. KNG is unable to independently verify the casualty numbers of the Burma army or the combined KIA and PDF forces.
“Our troops engaged in a firefight with junta soldiers between Thawka and Yadana Aung villages. The Burma army’s jet fighter launched air attacks six or seven times around 10 a.m. One of the shells landed on a Buddhist monastery in Yadana Aung village. The monastery was seriously damaged by the airstrikes,” a PDF member told KNG.
In the early hours of 3 April, around 2 a.m., a junta military column burned down at least 80 civilian houses in Mae Zali village, which is located next to Yadana Aung village. The military column then moved on to Yadana Aung village, where they set fire to five civilian houses.
In the three days since 30 March, the junta military column had already set fire to a large number of structures in Nyaung Pin Thar village in Tigyaing Township. Local people report that there are more than 1,800 houses in Nyaung Pin Thar village, and that almost all of the houses were set on fire by the Burma army.
On 31 March, the Burma army’s jet fighters attacked locations between Pouk Kon and Welgyi Inn-daung villages. There were no clashes in the area prior to the air attacks. The Tigyaing Revolution group reported that four civilians were killed and three injured by the airstrikes.