Most civilians choose to stay in TNLA-controlled areas despite worries after martial law declaration

Although the junta’s declaration has prompted concern that there will be more violence, residents of Namhsan, Manton, and Namtu have so far felt safe under the TNLA and are reluctant to leave

Since Myanmar’s military regime declared martial law last week in northern Shan State jurisdictions under the de facto authority of an ethnic armed organisation, locals fear the relative normalcy they have experienced for two months will soon be disrupted. 

The Ta’ang National Liberation Army (TNLA) seized control of the townships of Namhsan, Manton, and Namtu in December of 2023 as part of a coordinated offensive against the Myanmar military by the organisation and its allies, dubbed ‘Operation 1027.’

The junta announced on March 4 that they would impose martial law on the same three townships. 

One Namhsan resident told Myanmar Now that, notwithstanding widespread concerns that the declaration might signal the junta’s intent to launch air raids or other attacks on the town, most of the civilian population has chosen not to leave. 

“Some have already fled the town but about 90 percent are. . .

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