Heavy Violence Continues in Hpakant Township, Kachin State: Burma Army Attack Report in Northern Burma, January 2023
1 February 2023
Kachin State, Northern Shan State, and Sagaing Division, Burma
The Kachin Independence Army (KIA) reported a total of 79 military clashes during the month of January 2023, in Kachin State, northern Shan State, and Sagaing Division, Burma, due to the Burma Army’s presence in this region. The amount of overall activity increased from the previous month’s 68 military clashes. In January, the Burma Army attacked the ethnic armed organizations’ (EAOs’) controlled regions on 38 occasions, predominantly using indirect fire from artillery and mortars 25 times and air strikes seven times.
Apart from the 79 military clashes, the KIA recorded a total of five human rights abuses committed by Burma Army soldiers. Of note, the Burma Army bombed four villages in Kata Myo New, Maw Ta Gyi, Tet Kung (Mohnyin Township, Kachin) and Moe Da Lay (Shwegu Township, Kachin) on January 18, collectively killing 14 civilians and wounding over sixty other civilians.
Hpakant Township, Kachin State, was the most violent township with 27 military clashes, followed by Waingmaw township with eight events. Hpakant continues to be a major flash point as the Burma Army seeks to assert its control over the Hpakant jade mining sector, the most valuable jade mining area in Burma and in the world. Overall, the high volume of attrition attacks such as indirect fire and airstrikes, and the relative lack of ground attacks in the region indicate that the Burma Army seeks to retain key territory in northern Burma while prioritizing offensive campaigns in other areas, such as central Burma.
Military Incident Log
On January 2, 2023, approximately 20 Burma Army soldiers in five Pajero cars and one UD truck departed from their Military Operations Command (MOC 21) base and arrived at Tet Kale Hkazik (47Q LG 199 815). They seized a backhoe (operating in gold mining) and took it to their MOC 21 Base.
On January 17, 2023, at 1030 hrs, Burma Army soldiers from 364th Artillery Unit Base fired four 81mm mortar rounds to the outskirts of Nga Pyaw Taw village.
On January 1, 2023, at 1700 hrs, Burma Army Infantry Battalion (IB) 76 stationed at Mazup Yang prison fired two 81mm mortar rounds to the areas beside Sanghka and Mawbung cemetery.
On January 2, 2023, between 2245-2300 hrs, Burma Army soldiers stationed at Mazup Yang fired more than ten rounds of 60mm and 81mm mortars.
On January 2, 2023 Burma Army Light Infantry Battalion (LIB) 120 stationed at Tanggau Bum fired three rounds of 120mm mortar to the outskirts of Hpakai Bum.
On January 4, 2023, at 0300 hrs, the Burma Army fired one 60mm mortar round from Hpakant Tatma Hill (division base) to the area next to the cemetery.
On January 10, 2023, at 2125 hrs, IB 76 stationed at Hpakant Tatma Base fired one 60mm mortar round to the area beside Gwihka Jam Gap.
On January 11, 2023, at 0605 hrs, six Burma Army soldiers drove in a car from the monastery at Mawmau Layang village and were attacked with an Improvised Explosive Device (IED) by KIA soldiers, between Nba La Hka and Tawng Hpyu village, leaving one wounded.
On January 15, 2023, between 0307-0500 hrs, LIB 111 stationed at Gwihka fired two 60mm mortar rounds to area beside Sappya Chaung.
On January 15, 2023, Burma Army soldiers stationed at Hpakant Tatma Kawng (Division Base) fired two 60mm mortar rounds to the area beside of Nmaw Yang.
On January 16, 2023 between 2115-2130 hrs, LIB 12 stationed at Kamaing Byuha Kawng (Tactical Base) fired one 60mm mortar round to the side of Poilaw Pa, Nawng San.
On January 18 at 1225 hrs, Burma Army soldiers stationed at Hpakant Tatma Kawng (Division Base) fired 60mm mortar rounds that damaged the tent of the service school house near Uru Hka river, wounding Daw Nyu Nyu, 50.
On January 18, 2023, at 1400 hrs, 15 security forces of IB 76 and No. 30 Police Station shot Mr. Lahpai Seng Naw (from Hpakant Block 4) to death who passed by on a motorcycle near Hpakant Hkrai Noi (at the suspension bridge).
On January 19, 2023, at 1840 hrs, LIB 12 stationed at Kamaing Byuha Kawng (Tactical Base) fired three 60mm mortar rounds and more than 50 rounds of small arms to the area next to Lawa road intersection.
On January 19, 2023, LIB 116 arrested eight civilians and took them to Shanni Nationalities Army (SNA) base and killed five of them. On January 22, the three other civilians escaped and appeared at KIA 26th BN base. They were undergoing treatment at Tung Pin village.
On January 20 at 2240 hrs, LIB 120 fired one 120mm mortar round to the outskirts of Taw Maw from Hpakant Tatma Kawng (Division Base).
On January 21, 2023, at 1600 hrs, KPDF fired an RPG at Burma Army’s Hpakant joint checkpoint, wounding four.
On January 22, 2023, at 1630 hrs, IB 76 fired two 82mm mortar rounds to the outskirts of Maw Wan, Sai Wan block from their Division Base at Hpakant Tatma Kawng.
On January 23, 2023, at 1710 hrs, KIA soldiers from 6th Battalion dropped a bomb with a drone on IB 76, which was positioned at Chinese Buddhist Temple Hill, Mashi Kahtawng village.
On January 24, 2023, at 1507 hrs, LIB 120 positioned at Ginsi Byuha Kawng (tactical base) fired four 60mm mortar rounds and LIB 120 positioned at Tang Gau Bum fired four 60mm mortar rounds to the area beside KIA’s Uru Hkahku, Man Den Outpost.
On January 26, 2023, at 1026 hrs, a Burma Air Force jet fighter from Myitkyina dropped three bombs near Sezin village, damaging civilian houses.
On January 26, 2023, at 0630 hrs, fighting broke out when KIA soldiers from 44th Battalion fired at an estimated 40 Burma Army soldiers from LIB 12 led by Capt. Kyaw Thu stationed at Namsheng Bum base. Burma Army soldiers also fired 12 rounds of 120mm and 60mm mortars to the site.
On January 26, 2023, between 0630-0700 hrs, KIA soldiers from 44th Battalion fired six 60mm mortar rounds at Kamaing, Byuha Base; the Burma Army soldiers returned fire with 24 60mm mortar rounds.
On January 27, 2023, at 1500 hrs, there was a small arms engagement between KIA soldiers from 26th Battalion and an estimated 65 SNA soldiers led by U Sai Pan coming from Sezin village.
On January 27, 2023, at 1800 hrs, Burma Army troops positioned along Sezin village engaged in fighting with KIA soldiers from 26th Battalion.
On January 27, 2023, at 0343 hrs, LIB 12 stationed at Nam Sheng Bum fired one mortar/artillery round to the outskirts of the north-west of Nam Sheng village.
On January 27, 2023, at 2150 hrs, LIB 12 stationed at Kamaing, Byuha Base fired two 81mm mortar rounds to the area beside Manden village road.
On January 2, 2023, a 12-wheel truck carrying rice and barrels of fuel and one Pajero car traveled to Mung Hkawng Base (LG 215 515). On the way back, the two vehicles were attacked by KIA soldiers from 27th Battalion with remote mines at coordinates LG 199 599 near Pat Kwi.
On January 14, 2023, at 1109 hrs, KIA soldiers from 12th Battalion fired at an estimated 100 combined forces from LIBs 319 and 601operating at LG 082 524 near Man Na between Manta and Tan Tada.
On January 15, 2023, between 1340-1350 hrs, more than 70 combined soldiers of IB 223 and LIB 348 coming from Jehkam were attacked by KIA soldiers with three remote mines and small arms at coordinates LG 055 321 between Jehkam and Namlim.
On January 17, 2023, KIA soldiers from 12th Battalion engaged in fighting with an estimated 80 Burma Army combined troops of IB 74 and LIB 348 coming on foot from Namlim Pa – along Man Gau Danam (LG 128 264) between Namlim Pa and Man Gau.
On January 19, 2023, at 1610 hrs, KPDF fired two 60mm mortar rounds at the IB 121 Base and two rounds in the vicinity of Nga Oo bridge.
On January 3, 2023, at 1330 hrs, LIB 390 stationed at Dumbung fired four rounds of 60mm mortar to the area beside Lawa.
On January 10, 2023, at 1420 hrs, an estimated 35 Burma Army soldiers led by IB 42 Commander, Lai Bwar Tun, came from Mai Nawng village and were engaged in fighting by Kachin Independence Army (KIA) soldiers from 26th Battalion in vicinity of 47R KH 214 710.
On January 11, 2023, between 1030-1329 hrs, the Burma Army soldiers arrived at Mai Nawng village and fired four rounds from a 79mm grenade launcher at a KIA outpost of the 1st Company of 26th Battalion.
On January 18, 2023, at 1630 hrs, three Burma Air Force jets dropped bombs on Kata Myo Ney, Maw Ta Gyi and Tet Kung village, killing six civilians and injuring thirty others.
On January 19, 2023, between 1215-1720 hrs, two Burma Air Force jets from Myitkyina dropped three bombs: one at 1215 hrs, one at 1655 hrs and one at 1720 hrs on combined student forces encircling Burma Army troops from IB 77 around Moe Da Le.
On January 22, 2023, between 0700-0755 hrs, a car carrying four Burma Army soldiers, coming from Lungtung Police Station, was attacked with an IED by KIA soldiers from 26th Battalion, killing one and wounding two.
On January 26, 2023, at 0425 hrs, combined troops of KIA 9th Brigade, 26th Battalion and 31st Battalion attacked Namlik, Pak Kala and Panse Shwe Pyi Mit areas where SNA and Pyitutsit (PTT) were stationed. The combined KIA troops seized some arms and ammunition and set fire to the outposts, located along Panse and Nam Pada.
On January 7, 2023, between 0940-1040 hrs, LIB 437 fired more than ten rounds of 105mm howitzer and 120mm mortar an orange orchard (LG 358 867) and Chyinghtawng Bum (LG 376 862).
On January 10, 2023, at 1015 hrs, Burma Army soldiers fired five rounds of 105mm howitzer along Lungja Bum between Chyinghtawng Bum (LG 376 862) and an orange orchard (LG 358 867).
On January 24, 2023, between 2130-2230 hrs, Burma Army soldiers stationed at Hpakawn Outpost – Manda Outpost fired more than 20 rounds of 60mm mortar and 81mm mortar to the area beside Hkapra Krung (LG 486 887) and fired MG-42 machine guns outside of their base.
On January 29, 2023, between 1422-1522 hrs, an estimated 100 combined soldiers of IB 47 and LIB 348 traveling by foot from Loihkam – Bang Htan clashed with KIA soldiers from 27th Battalion near Dunghkung Bum (LG 324 264).
On January 31, 2023, at 1730 hrs, an estimated 100 combined Burma Army soldiers of IB 236 and LIB 438 arrived at Law Mun village set fire to the wooden house of Mr. Lasang Ahpu (from Lawdan village).
On January 31, 2023, at 0500 hrs, over 100 combined Burma Army soldiers of IB 236 and LIB 438 were attacked with three sets of IEDs along coordinates: LG 437 835 near Lawdan by KIA soldiers from 15th Battalion, killing one and wounding seven. The troops headed to Sinlum from Law Mun village at 1910 hrs.
On January 3, 2023, at 1520 hrs, two Burma jet fighters and one helicopter from Myitkyina dropped bombs and strafed at civilian-operated gold mining boats along Mali Hka river (LH 081 525) near Nyawng Pin Tar village, leaving four seriously wounded. A gold mining boat was also destroyed. The wounded included Daw Hkin Aye, 43, Daw Noi Noi Win, 26, Ko Lin Htet Oo, 28, and U Hkin Zo Oo, 42. After the bombing they underwent treatment at Nyawng Pin Tar Clinic.
On January 17, 2023, at 2000 hrs, IB 40 fired four rounds of mortar/artillery to the outskirts of Hupin Chya Ji Kwin.
On January 18, 2023, a jet dropped a bomb at civilian gatherings (while celebrating for the donation) at Moe Da Lay village, killing eight and wounding 30 civilians.
On January 18, 2023, there was an armed engagement between combined forces of KIA and KPDF and more than 70 Burma Army soldiers from IB 77 around Naungcho-Sik Ta (new village), leaving IB 77 Commander Tsan Shwe, 2/IC Min Zaw, and more than ten Burma Army soldiers killed and ten Burma Army soldiers wounded.
On January 19, 2023, Burma Army troops operating around Sik Ta village clashed with KIA soldiers from 8th Brigade. A Burma Air Force jet fighter dropped a bomb at the clash site at 1300 hrs and again at 1400 hrs.
On January 20, 2023, Burma Air Force jets drop bombs around Sik Ta.
On January 22, 2023, at 0840 hrs, Burma Army soldiers stationed at Shwegu Police Station fired four 60mm mortar rounds at Sin Tat (47R KG 767 814).
On January 6, 2023, between 1140-1150 hrs, an estimated 30 Burma Army soldiers from IB 46 carrying food ration, heading to Sumprabum on foot from Mali Yang, were attacked with thirteen remote mines, 40mm mortar, 79mm grenade launchers and small arms at coordinates: 47R LK 597 380 by KIA soldiers from 10th Battalion, leaving six dead and fifteen others wounded. Burma Army soldiers stationed at Sumprabum fired mortar/artillery rounds to the flighting area.
On January 2, 2023, at 1740 hrs, IB 297 fired three 120mm mortar rounds from the side of Jahtu Hkahku at an unspecified target. Between 1740-1800 hrs, IB 297 fired eight rounds of 79mm launcher and small arms as well.
On January 3, 2023, at 1230 hrs, PTTs from Kai Taw gold mining area dropped one bomb from a drone near KIO’s Wara Zup, Administrative Office. At 1330 hrs, the PTTs fired five 60mm mortar rounds to the frontline area where KIA soldiers were present.
On January 9, 2023, at 1930 hrs, two jets dropped two bombs on the Department of Health Office and Medic School in the compound of KIA 2nd Brigade H.Q, leaving one dead, civil administrator, Galau Bawm Ting, wounded and a new medical student, Lahpai Nang Seng, seriously wounded. Lahpai Nang Seng later died at the hospital at 2045 hrs.
On January 4, 2023, at 0930 hrs, an estimated 20 Burma Army soldiers coming from Hpau Daw were attacked with four mines and three rounds of 79mm grenade launcher at Daga Yang (LH 684 793) by KIA soldiers from 3rd Battalion.
On January 5, 2023, at 0830 hrs, an estimated 70 combined forces of IB 58, LIB 385 and Dulay PTTs operating around Ding Kum Yang were attacked around coordinates LJ 699 159 on the way back by KIA soldiers from 3rd Battalion.
On January 5, 2023, at 1645 hrs, PTTs led by Min Zin Thant from Jahtu Zup village dropped a bomb from a drone at KIO’s Township Administrative Office near Awng Len Ja Maw (gold mining market area). Between 1630-1625 hrs, PTTs from the Kai Taw Ja Maw outpost dropped two bombs from a drone at KIA Kanoi Tu outpost.
On January 6, 2023, nineteen military trucks carrying supplies and food rations en route to Chihpwi road from Myitkyina were attacked with a remote mine at coordinates 47R LJ 668 117 between Mahkrai Hkyeng and Num Maw Yang at 1400 hrs by KIA soldiers from 3rd Battalion.
On January 6, 2023, at 1500 hrs, Burma Army soldiers stationed at 13-Mile, Sadung-Chihpwi road junction arrived and fired mortar rounds at a detonation site. On the way back, the nineteen military trucks were fired upon by grenade launchers and M-79 at coordinates: LJ 803 258 near Numli Hka by KIA’s militiamen of the 6th Company. LIB 521, stationed at Wa Kak Bum, and Bawm Lang PTTs fired six 60mm mortar rounds to outskirts of Zupra village.
On January 10, 2023, at 1630 hrs, the minors played with a hand grenade dropped by Wuyan Shwe Min PTTs and it exploded, blowing off both arms of Hkaw Si (nine year-old son of Mr. Hpyi Htoi), wounding Ah Lu Di (eight year old son of Mr. Ah Lu), in the leg, and wounding Bya Sar (eight year old boy), in the body.
On January 18, 2023, at 1220 hrs, Burma Army soldiers stationed at Nwan Yang school (47R LJ 758 047) fired one 60mm mortar round to the Law Pum front line area. At 1500 hrs, Burma Army soldiers fired four rounds again at KIA soldiers, from Laga Kawng Outpost (47R LJ 780 023).
On January 24, 2023, at 0750 hrs, an estimated 50 Burma Army soldiers coming from Sadung were attacked at coordinates LJ 830 064 by KIA soldiers from 3rd Battalion. Between 1420-1430 hrs, the clash continued at coordinates: LJ 780 067, leaving two Burma Army soldiers wounded. The Burma Army troops retrieved their two wounded soldiers and traveled to Bum Tawng (19-Mile) through Machyang Bum.
Northern Shan State
On January 2, 2023, at 1858 hrs, Burma Army soldiers stationed at Marau Kawng near Kuthkai Asia World gate fired five 81mm mortar rounds to the outskirts of Sahpyu (LF 906 981).
On January 12, 2023, at 1130 hrs, fourteen trucks – an estimated 20 Burma Army soldiers on each – coming from 105-Mile Base (LG 966 522) were attacked by KIA soldiers from 9th Battalion. At 1330 hrs, the convoy of trucks reached their Namhpakka IB 123 Base (LG 811 200).
On January 18, 2023, at 1952 hrs, IB 241 fired one 120mm mortar round from Amat Thaya Kung Base to the outskirts of Balawng Nam Hkum (LF 874 956).
On January 25, 2023, between 1025-1040 hrs, fighting broke out when an estimated 40 Burma Army soldiers coming from Man Nawng (LF 918 874) were attacked at the head of Nam Bachi village (LF 920 863) by KIA soldiers from 8th Battalion. The Burma Army fired two rounds of 105mm howitzer from Kuthkai Byuha (LF 893 941, Kuthkai Tactical Base) to the clash site, one round at 1059 hrs and one round at 1110 hrs.
On January 19, 2023, at 1500 hrs, Burma Army soldiers stationed at IB 256 Se Ji Base (LF 247 582) fired two 81mm mortar rounds to the area beside Byu Ban (LF 177 640).
On January 9, 2023, at 2205 hrs, Burma Army soldiers stationed at Munggu Byuha (tactical base, MG 315 652) fired two rounds of 105mm howitzer in vicinity of Nawng Hkam Bum (MG 344 581); one round towards Loi Ngu Bum (MG 474 660).
On January 24, 2023, at 0210 hrs, Myanmar National Democratic Alliance Army (MNDAA) soldiers arrived by car and attacked IB 290 and Myoma PTTs on patrol near LG 889 543 at Muse, wounding two Myoma PTTs.
On January 13, 2023, between 1300-1500 hrs, there was a fighting engagement between approximately 200 Burma Army soldiers coming from Nam Jarap Base (MF 198 832) and approximately 50 MNDAA soldiers from 203rd Battalion, 211th Brigade – at Loi Chyan (MF 223 780).
On January 14, 2023, between 1100-1130 hrs, there was a fighting engagement between an estimated 80 Burma Army soldiers from IB 68 coming from Lashio and Arakan Army (AA) soldiers between Na Noi (LF 977 518) and Bang Man (MF 025 958).
On January 29, 2023, between 1500-1730 hrs, an estimated 50 Burma Army soldiers from LIB 504 coming from Bang Shau clashed with Ta’ang National Liberation Army (TNLA) soldiers from 595th Battalion at Man Kawng Hkyet (MF 068 551), outside of Ja Yang. Burma Army soldiers stationed at Mung Jet fired mortar rounds towards the clash site.
On January 22, 2023, between 1200-1400 hrs, an estimated 20 combined forces of IB 272 and police shot one civilian from Machyang Hka village – around Namsi Bum.
On January 5, 2023, at 1430 hrs, four Burma Army soldiers stationed at Lung Tung village in a car were attacked with two IEDs by an unidentified armed group on their way back from Nyawng Pin village.
On January 9, 2023, at 1600 hrs, two Burma jets from Myitkyina dropped three bombs at KIA Mai Kawng outpost and Bum Run outpost.
On January 26, 2023, between 1200-1435 hrs, Burma Army soldiers stationed at the Katha LIB 309 Base fired eight rounds of 120mm mortar to outskirts of Chyauk Tung Gyi village. One shell landed near school, killing one civilian and wounding one.
On January 28, 2023, at 1020 hrs, Burma Army troops were attacked with two IEDs by KPDF in vicinity of Nyawng Pin Shu (47R KG 368 697).
Thank you and God bless you,
Free Burma Rangers