The Karen National Union (KNU) announced on Saturday that it has seized control of the junta’s Thee Mu Hta military base in Kayin state’s Mutraw (Hpapun) district.
The exact number of casualties from the clash was not known at the time of writing, but photos released by the KNU show at least five bodies and eight captives.
The KNU’s armed wing, the Karen National Liberation Army (KNLA), is fighting to overthrow Myanmar’s fascist dictatorship along with students and other citizens, said Saw Htoo Ka Shaw, the tactical commander of the KNLA’s Brigade 5.
“Their bullying and killing of unarmed civilians across Myanmar is against our revolutionary force’s beliefs. We cannot accept inhumane acts, not only in Kayin state, but also in other areas,” he said.
“In our area, we do not want the [junta’s] army and soldiers that commit such acts. There should be no place on earth for those who commit inhumane acts,” he added.
“We all have to fight in any way we can. This time it must be a decisive revolution. Young people are losing their lives because of their [the junta’s] inhumane acts, so we don’t want to forgive them,” the KNLA’s vice chief of staff, Lt-Gen Saw Baw Kyaw Heh, said.
The attack on the base came as the junta was holding a brief Armed Forces Day celebration in the capital Naypyitaw on Saturday morning.
On March 15, another ethnic armed group, the Kachin Independence Army (KIA), seized the regime’s Alawbwam base, located near the town of Dawhponeyang in Kachin state’s Momauk township.
The KIA and KNU have both declared that they reject the military’s February 1 coup, which has met with massive protests around the country.
At least 114 civilians were murdered by regime forces Saturday, in the worst day of violence since the junta launched a steadily escalating campaign to crush resistance to its rule.