At least 20 soldiers killed and 1,000 villagers displaced during clash near Sagaing capital 

Local resistance fighters killed at least 20 soldiers and suffered one fatality during a clash at a village about 16 miles outside the Sagaing Region capital of Monywa on Tuesday.

The fighting started hours after about 50 regime troops arrived at Htayaw Kyin village in Yinmabin Township at around 8am and raided people’s homes, inspected their motorbikes and checked their phones. 

The military flew surveillance drones over the area later in the afternoon. Then at around 3pm, members of the local People’s Defense Force launched an attack against the soldiers. 

Regime troops retreated from the village during the attack but returned half an hour later when they encountered more resistance fighters outside, a PDF fighter told Myanmar Now.

“When the clash began, they went outside the village because they thought there would be fewer of us,” he said. “But when they saw there were a lot of us, they went inside and stationed themselves in the village.” 

The resistance fighters held their fire while the soldiers took cover in the village, allowing residents to flee, he added. “Once we guessed that there was enough time for everyone to be out of the village, we surrounded it.” 

The soldiers took cover in a high school, a monastery and a pagoda as the two sides exchanged fire for about three hours. 

“The pagoda was damaged–some pieces fell off,” the PDF fighter said. “There were even holes in the roofs of buildings in the village.”

Two military trucks came from Monywa to bring reinforcements but PDF fighters attacked them with explosives, causing multiple casualties, the PDF said. 

Survivors from among the reinforcements then went and set fire to eight houses near the site of the ambush, locals said. 

At 6:30pm, PDF fighters retreated, allowing the military to also retreat to a site about two miles from the village.

“Our members who were involved in the fight say at least 20 soldiers were killed in two locations,” the PDF fighter said.

One PDF fighter was shot in the head and killed while two others suffered injuries to their hands and legs, he added. 

The military deployed snipers and mortars during the clash.

“We’ll keep fighting until we succeed. We don’t accept the terrorist military at all, so we’ll just keep going,” the PDF fighter said.

On Wednesday morning, over 200 soldiers arrived at the village and took up posts at the school and the monastery.

“No one dares to go near the village. They’ve already destroyed a home along the road to the village,” a local resident said.

More than 1,000 people from Htayaw Kyin and nearby villages have been displaced by the occupying soldiers.

Villagers in Yinmabin Township were among the first to take up arms against the junta in April. 

Related Articles

Back to top button