Myanmar military launches major offensive against Kachin rebels

The Tatmadaw or the Myanmar military has carried out ground and air strikes against the Kachin Independence Army (KIA) headquarter and other bases on Wednesday in a major new offensive, The Irrawaddy News Online reported on Thursday(Apr 13).

KIA spokesman Colonel Naw Bu told The Irrawaddy on Wednesday that the Tatmadaw bombarded areas around their headquarter in Laiza with artillery fires and launched air strikes against their bases in Hukawng Valley.

He said some civilians were killed and wounded in the attacks.

However, the Northern Alliance said that one banana plantation worker was killed and three others were injured.

The Northern Alliance is an alliance of armed ethnic groups including the KIA, TNLA, AA and MNDAA.

The escalation of fight in Kachin state followed the KIA’s April 6 raid on the Tatmadaw’s Battalion 86 based in Tanai township.  

Peace talks have been held several times between the KIA and the Tatmadaw in recent years.  However, they were stalled in February after the KIA set some some conditions for peace which were rejected by the Myanmar military.