The regime experienced heavy casualties in clashes with the Kachin Independence Army (KIA), the People’s Defence Force (PDF) and the Banmauk Revolution (BR) in Banmauk Township in Sagaing Region near the border with Kachin State last week.
“They suffered many fatalities during the clashes, so they launched an airstrike against us…We also suffered some during the fighting, but we cannot confirm how many,” an officer from BR told KNG. He said the junta bombed Nawng Kan village, killing two villagers aged 66 and 33.
A lieutenant was among the nearly 40 sit-tat killed during clashes between 18-25 May, according to resistance forces.
BR reported that 5,000 villagers from Mansi Gyi, Mang Lun, Kangyi Kon, Kyaung Lel, Ner Pin and Mang Htun were displaced by last week’s violence.
According to the 2014 census, about 200,000 people live in the township.
The resistance forces captured a sit-tat (Burma army) camp occupied by the regime and Shanni Nationalities Army forces on a hill near Kyaung Lel village, a PDF soldier told KNG.
From May 22 to 23, the All Burma Students’ Democratic Force and the Indaw PDF twice ambushed a regime column travelling from Indaw to Banmauk Township, where tensions continue to this day.
Since November last year, the regime has restricted supplies of food and fuel to the township, leading to inflation and shortages. An egg now costs 500 kyat (20 cents), a viss (3.6 lbs ) of pork 30,000 kyat and a viss of chicken costs about 20,000 kyat in Banmauk.
Locals also cannot buy data for their mobile phones. Martial law has been imposed for the last two years and household internet and phone services have been shut down since then.
The PDF warned civilians in early May they planned to attack the regime’s camp in Banmauk town in early May so they could make preparations for their safety.