KIA, PDF seize two Myanmar junta outposts in Kachin State within a week

Combined forces of the Kachin Independence Army (KIA) and People’s Defense Force (PDF) have seized two junta military outposts in Hpakant and Mansi townships in Kachin State in less than a week, the KIA said, The Irrawaddy reports.

Forces under Brigade 9 of the KIA, the armed wing of the Kachin Independence Organization, and the PDF under the National Unity Government launched attacks on the junta’s Nam Tin outpost near Lone Khin town on the Hpakant-Kamaing Road on the evening of Feb 2.

Residents of Lone Khin confirmed that the KIA and PDF captured the outpost at around 11 a.m. on Feb. 3.

“The junta’s military troops had been cut off by the KIA and resistance groups for a couple of weeks. They were not able to leave or get any supplies, and with the troops in a weakened state, the resistance was able to seize it successfully,” said a Lone Khin resident.

The residents and KIA sources on the ground in Hpakant said the seized outpost is one of three located in and around the Nam Tin Village area, where troops of the junta’s Light Infantry Battalion 120 were stationed.

The KIA has not revealed details of casualties but residents and KIA sources on the ground said the junta military suffered heavy losses.

Also on Feb. 2, another combined force of KIA and PDF troops seized a junta military outpost near Ba Laung Dein Sar Village in Mansi town, Bhamo District, according to Kachin-based media outlets.

Citing KIA spokesman Colonel Naw Bu, the Kachin media reported that the ethnic armed group and PDF attacked the outpost on Feb. 1 and seized it at around 7 a.m. on the next day.

The KIA and the Kachin People’s Defense Force (KPDF) have reported using both artillery and drone strikes in the attack. The Irrawaddy has not been able to verify the reports, and Col. Naw Bu could not be reached for comment.

On Jan. 20, the KIA and PDF seized a police station and two hilltop outposts from the junta military in Hway Khar Village, Hpakant Township. Junta troops who fled the outposts were found and arrested by the resistance in the following days.

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