Resistance forces overrun main junta police station in Chin State town under martial law

Local anti-junta forces attacked and seized the central police station from regime troops in Thantlang, Chin State on Wednesday night, despite the town being under martial law.

Leading the assault was a coalition that included the Chin National Army/Front (CNA/F)—an ethnic armed organisation—and the Chinland Defence Force (CDF), a guerrilla group that formed in the aftermath of the February 2021 military coup. 

According to CNA spokesperson Salai Htet Ni, the resistance fighters confiscated some 40 guns—including anti-drone weapons—in the two-hour battle, driving out nearly 40 junta soldiers and police officers who had been stationed in the compound in question. 

At least four regime troops were killed in the attack, he said, along with one member of the resistance coalition. Another guerrilla fighter was reportedly injured. 

The Myanmar military responded by deploying fighter jets to open fire on the area around the police station on Thursday morning. 

Further details of the airstrike could not be confirmed at the time of reporting. 

On February 2, the military council declared martial law in 37 townships across the country, most of which are known resistance strongholds; seven of these townships were in Chin State, including Thantlang. 

Junta forces that had been occupying the privately-owned Cooperative Bank in Thantlang were also ambushed by a coalition of CNA and CDF troops on February 1, leading to the capture of six military personnel, including an army lieutenant, and the seizure of eight guns.

A series of brutal Myanmar army offensives targeting Thantlang in late 2021 forced the town’s 10,000 residents to flee. Junta soldiers proceeded to burn down some 1,600 buildings, including two-thirds of Thantlang’s residences and more than 30 Christian religious sites. 

Since then, only Chin anti-junta resistance forces and regime soldiers remained in and around the abandoned town, with frequent clashes breaking out in the area. 

Salai Htet Ni said that following Wednesday’s attack by the CNA and CDF on the police station, the junta only had one remaining base in Thantlang.

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