Resistance fighters claim they have taken key Myanmar border town from military

Resistance fighters claim they have taken key Myanmar border town from military
  • PublishedApril 12, 2024

After days of intense fighting over the township of Myawaddy, the Karen National Liberation Army claims its soldiers have captured the last remaining military base – and is warning civilians of potential incoming airstrikes by government forces.

Resistance fighters in Myanmar’s civil war say they have taken control of a key town on the border with Thailand, in what would be another major defeat for the country’s military.

Following days of intense fighting over the township of Myawaddy, the Karen National Liberation Army (KNLA) claimed its soldiers had captured the last remaining government military base on Thursday morning.

The ethnic armed group posted photos on its social media account, showing their men next to dozens of seized weapons, and warned civilians of potential incoming airstrikes by government forces.

Myawaddy is a major trading town with Thailand and is strategically important because of its links to highways that run to parts of central Myanmar.

A soldier on the frontline with the People’s Defence Force (PDF), which has allied with the KNLA in Myawaddy, told Sky News that government armed forces had fled overnight but that there had been a number of airstrikes today.

A bloody civil war has ravaged Myanmar since 2021, when the armed forces took control of the country in a coup, ousting the democratically elected government of Aung San Suu Kyi.

Since then, fighting has broken out on several fronts between the military government and pro-democracy militias, as well as long-established ethnic armed organisations.

The military, has suffered a series of recent setbacks, losing territory in several states, including Shan, which borders China, and Rakhine, which borders Bangladesh.

Large losses have led to the introduction of mandatory conscription, causing many Burmese to flee across the border, and there are fears the ongoing fighting in Myawaddy could cause another mass exodus.

A Thai soldier in Mae Sot, which borders Myanmar. Pic: Steven Note/picture-alliance/dpa/AP
Image:A Thai soldier in Mae Sot, which borders Myanmar. Pic: Steven Note/picture-alliance/dpa/AP

Thailand has beefed up its military security on the border in Mae Sot, and on Wednesday foreign minister Parnpree Bahiddha-Nukara said the country was prepared to accommodate at least 100,000 civilians if the conflict on the border escalated.

SOURCE: SKYNEWS

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