Battles escalate across Chin State 

Clashes have again intensified between the military and armed resistance groups since Thursday morning in multiple locations across Chin State, according to representatives of the anti-junta People’s Defence Force (PDF) and the Chinland Defence Force (CDF). 

A member of the PDF chapter based in Kalay Township, Sagaing Region—which shares a border with Falam in northern Chin State—told Myanmar Now that his forces ambushed a military column of some 200 soldiers marching through the Waibula hills, which connects the two areas. 

Serious battles took place in the area near Mualzawl village in Falam at around 8am and de-escalated in the afternoon, Victor, the PDF member, said. 

“The battles started when our local defence force intercepted the military column. The shooting has stopped now after we fought the whole morning,” he said at around 3pm on Thursday.

The PDF-Kalay released a statement reporting that the junta troops stationed at the Kalay Technological University on the Kalay-Gangaw road had fired long-range artillery shells at them during the battle. They urged civilians to not use the road and to exercise extreme caution in the area. 

The number of casualties on either side could not be independently verified at the time of reporting. 

Members of the Kalay chapter of the People’s Defence Force (PDF-Kalay)

Also on Thursday, another serious battle took place between the CDF and the military in southern Chin State’s Matupi Township on the road towards Hakha at around 9am. 

Fighting was ongoing for at least eight hours between the villages of Kihlung and Lonhlaw, 20 miles north of Matupi town, a CDF-Matupi spokesperson said, with residents of both communities fleeing their homes. 

Further information about their condition and whereabouts was not known at the time of reporting. 

“The battle is still going strong. There could be some casualties on the military’s side but we haven’t gotten detailed intel yet,” he said on Thursday at around 5pm. 

Around 150 soldiers from the Light Infantry Battalion 140 and a military tactical unit—both based along the Matupi-Hakha road—were involved, but two junta bases nearby also fired shells in the direction of the clash, according to the CDF spokesperson. 

He added that one day prior to the battle, the military appeared to have been “regrouping” along the road and “getting ready to assault [the CDF].” 

On Monday, the CDF-Matupi launched a two-day attack on a military base housing 60 soldiers on the Matupi-Paletwa road. According to the group, five junta soldiers were killed and 10 were injured.  

In another clash along the road that day, the CDF reportedly took two Myanmar army troops captive. 

Thousands of people have also been displaced from the Kalay-Falam border region due to battles that broke out in late December, according to local news reports, with many staying in the Waibula area, where Tuesday’s first clash took place. The military allowed just 200 villagers to return to Kalay. 

Natchaung, a southern Kalay Township village across the border from Falam, was the site of a military airstrike on December 23. At least 22 civilians died in the attack, and some 50 homes in four villages were torched. 

The junta’s information officers have not answered Myanmar Now’s calls for comment regarding the battles in Chin State and the displacement of locals.

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