Villagers Displaced by Violence Between Multiple Armed Groups

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Since the military coup, over one-thousand civilians have been displaced by fighting between multiple ethnic armed organizations (EAOs) and the Burma Army in three townships in Burma’s northern Shan State.

KME war victims Photo by Cherry Kham 1
Photo by SHAN- War Victims at Kyautme

The Restoration Council of Shan State (RCSS) are battling Shan State Progress Party (SSPP) and Ta’ang National Liberation Army (TNLA), both members of Northern Alliance, in Kyaukme, Namtu and Hsipaw townships. RCSS is also fighting Burma Army.

Hundreds of villagers who sought refuge at Pangsan and Pobbayon monasteries in Namtu town are running out of food.

“There’s only 7 rice bags left (at Pobbayon monastery) and we need to cook one bag of rice a day to feed everyone,” said Loung Ba Nyan, who’s helping the 340 people in Namtu affected by the fighting. They’re also short of onions, salt and cooking oil.

KME war victims Photo by Cherry Kham 2
Photo by SHAN – War Victims at Kyautme

There’s over 200 internally displaced persons (IDPs) in Hsipaw Township. And there’s 500 IDPs in Kyaukme Township, where fighting is still ongoing. A volunteer from a civil society organization in Kyaukme told SHAN new IDPs keep coming. “Most are seniors, and they need warm clothing, blankets, food and medicine.”

On February 15, in Kyaukme Township, a shell killed a pregnant woman in her eighth month and a man. Six others in the house where the shell landed were wounded.

According to a SSPP statement, TNLA and SSPP have captured nine RCSS soldiers and the bodies of nine enemy soldiers, as well as weapons and equipment.

RCSS confirmed an unknown number of its soldiers were detained during battle with SSPP.

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