KNU, allies seize Myanmar military base in Myawaddy, Karen State

Allied resistance forces fighting under the Karen National Union (KNU) overran a junta base in Karen State’s Myawaddy Township on Sunday evening, an official from the ethnic armed organisation said. 

Padoh Saw Liston, KNU secretary for Dooplaya District, said that the military camp is located between Myawaddy and Lay Kay Kaw towns, west of Mitta Lin Myaing, an area dominated by the junta-allied Border Guard Force. 

“We had to seize control of that base because the soldiers there were always shooting at our people passing through. Let’s just say that conditions were in our favour this time,” he told Myanmar Now. 

Two regime soldiers were reportedly killed and three were injured in the attack, but Myanmar Now was unable to independently confirm these figures. 

The KNU and its allies—the Cobra and Black Panther Columns, both special operations units of the KNU and People’s Defence Force, and the Federal Wings, a drone force formed under the publicly mandated National Unity Government—began renewed assaults on junta forces in the area on July 5. 

A battle also broke out near Lat Khet hill in Myawaddy Township on Monday evening in which a civilian was injured, according to a statement released by Cobra Column that evening. 

Resistance forces in Karen State have destroyed several roads and bridges in an effort to block the military’s supply routes. 

Most recently, they used explosives to target a bridge at the intersection of Bayintnyigu and War Bow Taw roads in Hpa-An Township on Monday morning. The route also connects to Thaton Township in Mon State, a known resistance stronghold where the KNU is active. 

The Shwe Yaung Pya bridge on the Yangon-Mawlamyine highway was blown up in a similar manner in Mon State’s Bilin Township. Maj Saw Kyaw Myint, KNU chairperson for the Thaton District alliance affairs supervision committee, told Myanmar Now that they had destroyed the site because it was critical to the military’s logistics route. 

In June, resistance forces also destroyed five bridges in Bago Region’s Kyaukkyi Township, including the Nat Than Kwin, which crosses the Sittaung River. The area is considered part of the KNU’s territory, as well. 

In an attempt to sabotage resistance movements, the military has also bulldozed several stretches of highway, including the Taung Kya Inn road, 10 miles south of Kawkareik.

In the first half of the year, more than 2,400 battles broke out between anti-junta forces and the military in KNU territory. According to a statement by the ethnic armed organisation released on Sunday, more than 70 KNU troops and 2,600 Myanmar army soldiers had been killed in the clashes.

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