Fight­ing in Kayin drives 2000 from their homes

The Myanmar Times - - News - THU THU AUNG thuthuaung@mm­

ABOUT 2000 res­i­dents of Kayin State’s Hlaingbwe town­ship have taken refuge at the Myaing Gyi Nguu monastery since Septem­ber 11 to avoid on­go­ing fight­ing be­tween the Democratic Karen Benev­o­lent Army (DKBA) and the Tat­madaw, ac­cord­ing to a state hlut­taw MP.

The dis­placed res­i­dents come from vil­lages in the Mae Tha Wow area. Some fled to Thai­land, ac­cord­ing to law­maker U Tin Win Kyaw (NLD; Hlaingbwe 1).

“The state gov­ern­ment will come and sup­port the refugees [to­day],” he said. “We are plan­ning the process. The state gov­ern­ment will re­port back to the Union gov­ern­ment about the refugee sit­u­a­tion.”

The DKBA an­nounced an of­fen­sive against a Tat­madaw-aligned Border Guard Force ear­lier this month. Tat­madaw troops have since re­in­forced the BGF and heavy-weapons fire has been re­ported. Vil­lagers in the af­fected area were in­formed be­fore the fight­ing broke out and fled to the safety of the monastery.

A num­ber of Karen eth­nic armed groups, in­clud­ing the Karen Na­tional Union, the KNU/KNLA Peace Coun­cil and the DKBA, as well as gov­ern­ment­con­trolled BGFs, have sparred in Kayin State over who con­trols the Asia High­way – and the right to col­lect il­le­gal tolls along the road.

Photo: EPA

A Border Guard Force sol­dier pa­trols the Thai-Myan­mar border.

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