Burma

2,200 Myanmar Junta Soldiers Killed Since January: KNU

By The Irrawaddy 6 July 2022

More than 2,200 Myanmar junta troops have been killed in the first half of 2022 in Karen State, according to the Karen National Union (KNU).

Myanmar’s oldest and one of its most powerful rebel groups said in its monthly report released on Tuesday that its armed wings, the Karen National Liberation Army (KNLA) and the Karen National Defence Organization (KNDO) and allied resistance forces, have clashed with junta troops each day in June as the regime increased its activity.

The KNU reported 365 clashes with 410 junta and Border Guard Force deaths and 335 injuries in June.

The fiercest clashes were in late June at the junta’s Ukayit Hta outpost in Waw Lay, Myawaddy Township, which was under attack with 125 junta airstrikes launched against resistance forces.

The KNU said 17 resistance fighters were killed and 28 injured in June.

The KNU estimated 399 regime deaths in January, 311 in February, 429 in March, 356 in April and 303 in May.

Karen National Liberation Army and allied resistance forces after seizing the junta’s strategic Thay Baw Boe camp in Karen State on May 19. / Cobra Column

The Irrawaddy has not been able to independently verify the numbers.

Junta officers, including battalion commanders and majors, were among the dead.

The Maw Khee military camp in the KNLA’s Brigade 6 Dooplaya territory was captured on March 22. The KNLA and its allies also seized the junta’s Thay Baw Boe camp on May 18.

In June, the KNDO and its allies seized Waw Lay police station, where junta troops were based. Five regime soldiers were reportedly captured and nine detained resistance fighters were freed.

Amid its losses, the junta has aggressively escalated violence against civilians with shelling and airstrikes, torching houses and killing and using civilians as human shields across Karen State.

According to the KNU, the regime has killed at least 12 civilians, including children, and injured 28 others in June.

Around 200,000 displaced civilians in Karen State need emergency aid, the International Karen Organization said last week.

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