The Burma army raided Seng Hpra village in Hpakant Township on the morning of 18 April. Over 100 local villagers, including children, were arrested during the raid, say local sources.
About 30 Burma army soldiers from the Nam Yar military base raided Seng Hpra village around 5 a.m. During the raid the soldiers inspected every house in the village. A local man, who requested anonymity for security reasons, said that the soldiers arrested more than 100 people from Seng Hpra village.
“They raided our village around 5 a.m. and arrested both men and women. They inspected house by house. I think they arrested more than 100 people in our village. I don’t know where they took these people. We haven’t had any communication with these people since they were arrested. Soldiers seized the mobile phones from the villagers after arresting them. I heard that some children were released but I don’t know for sure,” the local man told KNG.
During the raid the Burma army justified the raid by stating that Seng Hpra village is controlled by the Kachin Independence Army.
“I ran away when the soldiers entered our village. The soldiers shot at me when I ran away. I am so lucky that no bullets hit me. After they arrested people, they started preparing to burn houses in the village. So far, they haven’t burned any houses. They said Seng Hpra village is a KIA-controlled village and that’s why they raided the village,” the local man told KNG.
Some Burma army soldiers left Seng Hpra village to return to their base at Nam Yar village around 9:30 a.m. KIA troops ambushed the returning soldiers near Gart Nwe village. Due to this clash, local people from Gat Noi, Hkum Tsai Zup and Tadar Nyi Nawng villages fled and have taken shelter in a safer place.
On 12 April, reinforcements of around 80 Burma army soldiers were sent to the Nam Yar military base in Nam Yar village. At the Nam Yar military checkpoint, Burma army soldiers strictly inspect people and vehicles travelling to and from Hpakant town.
The Burma army has increased its raids of civilian villages and arrests of local people in Hpakant Township since October 2022, when regime jet fighters massacred dozens of people with airstrikes on A Nang Pa village in the KIA’s brigade-9 controlled territory.