Saturday, June 22, 2024

Sections of the Taunggyi–Loilem vehicle road closed by military council

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The SAC military council has blocked multiple sections along the Taunggyi–Loilem vehicle road in southern Shan state following an intensification of armed clashes in the area. The road has been closed at the entrance of Hopong town, Mongpon town and Loilem town, according to local sources.

A driver who regularly plies the road said that the military council has closed the bridge in Mongpon town.

“Mongpon bridge is yet to reopen. The Loilem road has already reopened. I heard the sound of heavy weapon firing in Mongpon. I had to sleep in my car on the road last night,” the driver told SHAN.

The driver said that a combined force of Burma army and Pa-O PMF has blocked the road near the Htam Jarng cave, which is situated between Hopong town and Mongpon town. Nobody was allowed to travel on the road, and many travelers and drivers had to sleep in their vehicles on the road.

Since February 20, the Burma army has launched airstrikes in Hopong Township of the Pa-O Self-administered Zone in southern Shan state. There have been intense ground clashes between a combined force of Burma army and Pa-O PMF troops and the Pa-O National Liberation Army (PNLA).

Khit Thit media group reported that an alliance of troops led by the Shan State Progress Party/Shan State Army (SSPP/SSA) had multiple armed clashes with the Burma army and Pa-O PMF near Mongpun town on 21 February.

Regarding the clashes near Mongpon town, SHAN repeatedly called the SSPP/SSA spokesperson for his comment but he didn’t respond. SSPP/SSA is one of the armed groups that have signed the nationwide ceasefire agreement.

On 20 February, military news sources told SHAN that the Burma army has prepared its troops, tanks and armored vehicles to attack the PNLA in Hsihseng town. The PNLA continues to control Hsihseng town in the Pa-O Self-administered Zone.

The Pa-O Self-administered Zone consists of three townships in southern Shan State: Hopong, Hsihseng and Pinlaung Townships.

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