Myanmar – An ethnic rebel group stormed and seized a military installation belonging to Myanmar’s ruling junta along the Thai border on Tuesday morning.
According to Irrawaddy News, the separatist Karen National Liberation Army’s (KNLA) Brigade 5 stormed Myanmar’s military border station in Thaw Le Hta, near the border with Thailand’s Mae Hong Song, and seized the post at around 6 a.m. on Tuesday (2330GMT Monday).
According to a video released on social media by a resident of the country’s eastern border, fire overtook the military installation. Heavy gunfire was exchanged between the two sides.
“At first, several casualties were reported. “At least seven soldiers were seen attempting to flee,” the article added, citing local locals.
The Karen National Liberation Army (KNLA) is the armed wing of the Karen National Union (KNU), which acknowledged the attack.
Since 1949, the KNU has fought the Burmese government for self-determination. The ethnic group operates in mountainous eastern Myanmar and has underground networks in other parts of the country where Karen people dwell as a minority community.
The new operation comes a month after the KNLA took a mountaintop station manned by the junta’s Light Infantry Division 349 in Thi Mu Hta on March 27.
During the attack, at least ten soldiers were killed, including an officer, and eight other soldiers were taken as prisoners of war by the ethnic insurgents.
The seizing of the Myanmar junta’s military position comes amid large anti-coup demonstrations in the Buddhist country since the Tatmadaw – the official name of the Burmese military – seized over in February.
According to the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners, 3,441 people have been arrested and 79 have been convicted since the military occupation began on February 1. The ruling junta forces have killed at least 753 civilians.