FROM THE DVB NEWSROOM
Military plane used to airlift soldiers crashes in India
At least 12 people were injured when a military plane overshot a runway and crashed at Lengpui Airport in India’s Mizoram State capital on Jan. 23. It arrived in Aizawl to airlift 92 Burma Army soldiers that had fled recent attacks from the Arakan Army (AA).
An official from the Airport Authority of India told AFP that four of the injured are in serious condition. At least 276 Burma Army soldiers crossed into Mizoram after the AA seized control over neighboring Paletwa Township in southern Chinland on Jan. 14.
A previous airlift on Jan. 22 returned 184 of the 276 Burma Army soldiers from India. India’s army chief General Manoj Pande said on Jan. 12 that at least 416 soldiers have crossed the border into India since November.
Brotherhood Alliance blames regime for ceasefire violations
The Brotherhood Alliance stated on Jan. 22 that the Burma Army has repeatedly broken a China-backed ceasefire agreement since it was reached on Jan. 11.
It claimed that the Burma Army has been conducting offensives, airstrikes and firing artillery shells in Mogok, Mandalay Region, as well as in Mongmit, Kyaukme, Mogok, Namkham and Lashio townships in northern Shan State since the truce began.
The Brotherhood Alliance added that it is being “patient” despite the alleged ceasefire violations. Fighting between the AA and the Burma Army in Arakan State is expected to intensify over the next few days as the navy has sent reinforcements.
Border Guard Force splits from Burma Army
The Karen Border Guard Force (BGF), which operates along the Thai-Burma border, communicated its decision to no longer accept salaries and other benefits from the Burma Army on Jan. 11, Thai PBS reported.
The BGF announced it will maintain neutrality in fighting between the Burma Army and resistance forces. It is now reportedly withdrawing its 300 troops to the Karen State capital, Hpa-An.
But its leader Chit Thu stated that the BGF will keep control of Shwe Kokko in Myawaddy Township. This split comes after Naypyidaw and Bangkok held talks on how to crack down on criminal activity in Shwe Kokko.
Three brigadier generals sentenced to death
A military court in Naypyidaw handed death sentences to three brigadier generals and life sentences to another three on Jan. 12. The six were accused of surrendering to the Myanmar National Democratic Alliance Army (MNDAA) in Laukkai, capital of the Kokang Self-Administered Zone of northern Shan State, on Jan. 4 and 5.
“Brig. Gen Tun Tun Myint, Moe Kyaw Thu and Zaw Myo Win received death sentences and Brig. Gen Thaw Zin Oo, Aye Min Oo and Aung Zaw Lin received life sentences under the Defence Services Act,” said an unnamed source from the military.
News by Region
KAREN—At least 60 houses were damaged due to a fire in Kawkareik on Jan. 21. The fire broke out during fighting between the Karen National Liberation Army (KNLA) and the Burma Army. But its cause remains unknown.
“The fire started in just one house but quickly spread as there were no people to extinguish it,” a Kawkareik resident told DVB. Around 20 people have been killed, and 100 houses have been destroyed as a result of Burma Army artillery attacks in Kawkareik since December.
MAGWAY—The Gangaw People’s Administration claimed that the National Unity Government (NUG) provided 20 million kyat on Jan. 20 to repair the Maw Chaung bridge in Gangaw Township, which connects it with Pakokku Township, after it was destroyed by Cyclone Mocha last May.
“We asked the [NUG] government to cover the costs and it provided for the first round. They will provide more later to cover the costs,” said Soe Lwin, a People’s Administration spokesperson.
SAGAING—Four bodies, including an NUG legal clerk, were recovered by villagers in Let Yat Kone village, Depayin Township, on Jan. 19. “Khin Hnin Htay’s body was burned and the other bodies were cut into pieces. Residents of the village are also afraid to stay in the village,” said a Depayin resident.
The four victims are among six civilians from Mae Oh village that were arrested by the Burma Army on Jan. 18. The PDF claims to control half of Depayin Township.