Karen National Liberation Army sources confirm that in clashes on June 10 in the area of Lamphan village – 19 miles south of Kawkreik town, Karen fighters had killed eight Burmese soldiers and wounded seven.
The Burma army Light Infantry Brigade 201 operating in the Lamphan village area was ambushed by a combined force from the Karen National Liberation, Battalion 17 and soldiers from a breakaway faction of the Democratic Karen Buddhist Army Brigade 5.
Lieutenant Colonel Paw Doh, commander of KNLA Battalion 101 said.
“Our forces confronted the Burma army operating in Lamphan village, the fighting lasted about two hours. We killed eight of the enemy soldiers and wounded another seven. We had no casualties on our side.”
Unlike the Karen army the Burma army has yet to issue a statement.
A villager from Kaw Hsaing, close to Lamphan village, who asked not to be named, told Karen News that the fighting in the area has frightened villagers who worry for their safety. The villager said telephone lines in the area had been suspended and villagers were unable to communicate with the outside world.
“Karen forces have been waiting, near Lamphan village to attack the Burma army troops that are coming here. Yesterday there was fighting and everyone in the village is frightened. Because of the conflict, telephones are suspended.”
In recent months, Karen forces have been increasing their military activities in Kyain Seikgyi Township in response to the build-up of Burma army soldiers in the area. The Burma army has increased its
forces in an attempt to wage war against the recent reunification of different Karen forces in the region – as a result, fighting has increased in the area.
On June 6, combined Karen forces and the ABSDF, a Burmese student army, made a statement that they would counter the Burma army offensive by launching a joint offensive called ‘Ma Ner Soe’ [winning in advance]. Regional military specialists warn that the current situation is primed for more conflict erupting across Karen State.