Seven Burmese government soldiers were killed and 20 others injured when their column was ambushed by ethnic rebels, according to state media on Monday.
According to a report in the Global New Light of Myanmar, a Burmese army column was conducting security operations in villages about 10 miles north of Kunlong in northern Shan State when it was attacked on Saturday morning by “remnant Kokang insurgents”.
Fighting has flared in recent weeks in the Muse area. On Wednesday, clashes were reported between government forces and a combined force of Kokang, Kachin and Palaung battalions.
Maj. Ta Bhone Kyaw, spokesperson of the Ta-ang (Palaung) National Liberation Army (TNLA), which is fighting alongside the Kokang and Kachin Independence Army (KIA) units, confirmed Saturday’ s clash.
“It was not only our Myanmar National Democratic Alliance Army [Kokang army] troops involved, but a combined force with the TNLA and the KIA,” he said.
“A head-on clash broke out in Namsalat village on Saturday at 11am and went on until 12:30pm. We did not lose any casualties, but we do not know about the Tatmadaw [Burmese army].”
He said clashes had abated by Sunday; however Tatmadaw soldiers continued shelling rebel outposts in Namsalat and Tamoenye on the west bank of the Salween River every one or two hours throughout the day.