The Burma Army accused the Restoration Council of Shan State/Shan State Army (RCSS/SSA) of detaining two of its military officers near Tawng Shay village in northern Shan State.
Tatmadaw leaders said the ethnic armed organization (EAO), which it is fighting with in Kyaukme Township, detained the officers on October 6 and released them on October 22.
RCSS/SSA spokesperson Lt-Col Oum Khur told SHAN he had heard nothing about it. Tatmadaw frequently publishes fake news about the EAO, he said, while suggesting if the Burma Army really wants peace with RCSS/SSA it shouldn’t invent stories.
Tatmadaw Information Team reported that RCSS/SSA agreed to remain in the Homung and Mong Hta areas as part the Union-level ceasefire RCSS/SSA signed in 2012. After the EAO signed the Nationwide Ceasefire Agreement (NCA) in 2015, it made a new base in northern Shan State.
Lt-Col Oum Khur denied making any such agreement about the “demarcation” of troops, while explaining to SHAN they’re “closely monitoring the situation” in Kyaukme Township.
RCSS/SSA fought with Tatmadaw troops between October 2 and October 13, after the latter entered their area in the township.
Although the Burma Army has not withdrawn from Kyaukme Township, fighting has not been reported for nearly two weeks. Currently, the armed groups are standing off.
The Union Election Commission announced on October 16 that the election would be canceled in 12 village-tracts in Kyaukme Township due to “regional instability.”
Several EAOs based in northern Shan State said if the Burma Army withdrew from the area, the fighting would cease and the election could proceed peacefully.