Explosion Hits Central Laiza Near KIA Headquarters

By Steve Tickner 23 January 2013

LAIZA, Kachin State — A heavy explosion rocked central Laiza at midday today, only a hundred meters from the hotel used by the Kachin Independence Army as it headquarters.

A mother and child suffered cuts from flying debris as an unknown projectile tore through the roof and an upper bedroom of their home before exploding on the ground floor.

The home backs onto the stream running through Laiza that forms the border with China.

The mother, Ji Ji, had been sitting less than 10 meters from where the explosion occurred with her one-year-old child, Awng Ngai, in a baby pouch on her back. At the time she was working at her sewing machine producing vests for KIA soldiers.

Both suffered abrasions and cuts from flying debris, but no serious injuries. At this time the exact cause of the explosion was not known, but was suspected to have been a mortar or artillery round fired by the Burmese army.