Ethnic Ta’ang and local resistance forces launch offensive against junta in Mandalay’s Mogok Township

During a one week advance in Mogok Township, allied resistance armed groups claim to have seized a military camp, stormed a police station, and intercepted an army convoy

The Ta’ang National Liberation Army (TNLA) and the local People’s Defence Force (PDF) have together launched a renewed offensive against the Myanmar army in Mandalay Region’s Mogok Township over the past week.

The advance, named Operation Moe Lone Hmine—Burmese for “overcast sky”—was launched on September 11 with the resistance’s seizure of a military camp in Kone San village, where most of the 70 households’ residents had fled to the surrounding forests and Mogok town.

In the battles since, some 80 junta soldiers are estimated to have been killed, according to La Yaung, commander of the Mogok PDF’s Battalion 1223, which was involved in the clashes. Myanmar Now was unable to independently verify his claim, and there have been no photos or video provided to reinforce the figure.

Fighters from PDF Battalion 1223 on the frontline in the Mogok area (PDF Battalion 1223)

Amid the intensified fighting, he told Myanmar Now that junta aircraft attacked the area on September 15 and again on Sunday to provide support for the Myanmar army’s ground troops. 

The PDF commander added that “the aerial bombings didn’t hurt us.” 

On the night of September 15, the joint TNLA-PDF forces reportedly stormed the junta police station in Kyat Pyin village tract in western Mogok, causing the military to launch a counter-attack to recapture the site. Heavy artillery was fired in the direction of Kyat Pyin from junta units based in the township’s administrative centre, killing a PDF member, La Yaung said.  

A PDF fighter in Kyat Pyin in western Mogok (Red Wolves Of Mogok / Facebook)

On Monday, the PDF battalion commander said that resistance forces intercepted a military convoy bringing reinforcements to Mogok, destroying two of the four vehicles en route and killing eight junta soldiers. 

Through its official Facebook page, the TNLA has reported that intense clashes had been taking place in Muse, northern Shan State, as well as Mogok, but did not mention collaboration with PDFs from Mandalay, which it has been clandestinely arming and training since their emergency after the February 2021 coup.

The ethnic armed organisation is also active in Nawnghkio, Shan State, which is adjacent to Mandalay Region. 

According to an announcement on September 13 by the publicly mandated National Unity Government’s defence department, more than 80 junta personnel have also been killed during fighting in recent months on the Shan-Mandalay border, including in Nawnghkio. In mid-July, the Mandalay Region PDF, which fights under the NUG, and the TNLA, launched Operation Kanaung there, a joint military initiative named for the 19th century Burmese Prince Kanaung of Mandalay.

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