Civilians afraid of fighting between ethnic armed organizations (EAOs) in northern Shan State fled after Shan troops arrived near their village.
A villager from Kaw Pao, located in Kyaukme Township, told SHAN that Restoration Council of Shan State (RCSS) soldiers have been stationed close to the village since Monday, January 11. With the Ta’ang National Liberation Army (TNLA) not far away, the source explained that violence could erupt on a moment’s notice.
A civil society organization (CSO) brought the internally displaced persons (IDPs) to camps in the town of Kyaukme, where an estimated 1,070 are sheltering from the fighting. Additionally, some have fled to Mansan village, located in Namtu Township.
RCSS Spokesperson Maj Kham San told SHAN he hasn’t received an recent update on his troop’s movement but heard new territory was captured during over two-weeks of fighting with Ta’ang troops.
Mai Ah Ban, who’s helping the displaced civilians, told SHAN they don’t dare to return while the EAOs are stationed near their villages.
Nang Kham Aye, a parliamentarian in Namtu Township, said some villagers returned home after soldiers left, while others were staying at the monasteries waiting for the soldiers to leave. On January 10, there were 268 IDPs sleeping in Mansan monastery, she said.
Violence that resumed between the RCSS/SSA and TNLA in northern Shan State at the beginning of December has resulted in a number of civilian injuries. On January 5, a villager was killed and another wounded when a shell hit a home in Namtu Township. At least three women, including a pregnant woman, and a male teenager were wounded during clashes on December 10.