Two people are dead, including a government servant, and seven people wounded after soldiers from Ta’ang National Liberation Army (TNLA) and the ruling State Administration Council (SAC) exchanged fire in the town of Namkham.
The fighting on Tuesday erupted in the afternoon when TNLA attacked SAC’s Sakhan Thit camp with heavy weapons after a transport plane dropped supplies to the besieged soldiers using parachutes. SAC then retaliated by firing shells back at the Ta’ang armed group.
A local source said a man and a woman, who were killed after a shell landed nearby, went to the municipal department office to observe the airdrop. Three of the victims who suffered serious injuries were sent to the hospital in Muse, while the other four are receiving treatment in Namkham.
Since TNLA and the other two members of Three Brotherhood’s Alliance launched its 1027 operation in northern Shan state, SAC has suffered numerous causalities and lost many bases. The regime has imposed martial law in northern Shan State and no one is allowed outside from 6 pm to 6 am.
“Our town is completely silent at night. Nobody leaves their home after 5 pm. TNLA soldiers are deployed in the market and in the police station in town,” another local man has told SHAN.
Since November, the Ta’ang group has seized most of the town, however fighting has continued with SAC troops. Some are stationed at Sakhan Thit base, which TNLA hasn’t been able to capture until today.
On Wednesday, in the town of Hsipaw, U Nyan Htay, aged 49 was killed by shelling between TNLA and SAC that struck his home in San Phueak Kwet Thit Ward. A total of seven homes in the ward were affected by the shelling, a local source said. Four others in the town were wounded on the same day, including two people in Ward 4, and one is in critical condition.
TNLA troops deployed at San Phueak Bridge at the entrance of the town and the graveyard are preventing anyone from crossing the bridge, which has trapped residents in San Phueak Kwet Thit Ward.
Kyaukme residents reported a 40 vehicle convoy, which includes a tank, arriving in the town. The vehicles left Pyin Oo Lwin in Mandalay Region the first week of November. 10 SAC vehicles are en route to Hsipaw.
TNLA destroyed Kyinthi Bridge between the two towns on the Union Highway road on November 12 in order to prevent SAC forces from advancing further into northern Shan State where Three Brotherhoods Alliance has surrounded regime soldiers or captured their bases.