Burmese army making Kachin war from political to racial in nature

Burmese army truck carrying artillery

On May 18, Burmese army soldiers of 320th LIR under MOC-21, who are currently stationed at Tapaing bridge on Bahmo-Laiza road, asked passenger cars crossing on the bridge whether there is any Kachin inside the car. The soldiers said Kachin women should be raped and all Kachin men should be killed because they think Kachin State is theirs, said a passenger. Passengers said Burmese soldiers who are providing security along Bahmo-Laiza road repeatedly asked that question.

Burmese Army’s 438th LIR under MOC – 21 has forced Kachin villagers in Numlang village to carry ammunition and food rations to frontline areas. Numlang village is located on Laiza-Bhamo road and villagers are ethnic Shan and Kachin. Local sources say that Burmese Army discriminates against Kachin villagers to serve as porters while most Shan villagers are not forced to do so.

KIO Chairman Lanyaw Zawng Hra mentioned in a letter sent to UN Secretary General on May 15 that the Burmese Army is not only waging war against the KIO/KIA but also against the Kachin population as a whole and the government’s Army is now engaged in ethnic cleansing and conflict has now turned from one of political to racial in nature.

Fighting between the two sides show no signs of abating. Kaw Mai, an IDP at Jeyang camp, told KLN that if Burmese government really wants ceasefire, all they have to do is stop offensive and withdraw their troops as KIA is not engaged in an offensive war.

UN and international community shower Burmese government with praises for on-going reforms but government’s soldiers blatantly commit many heinous crimes in the Kachinland and Shan State in the eyes of governments and observers.

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