Fifteen Myanmar military soldiers including a senior officer were reportedly killed on Monday in Demoso Township, Kayah State when a combined force of Karenni resistance groups attacked regime troops occupying a village.
Fighters from Karenni Revolution Union (KRU) and Demoso People’s Defense Force (PDF) attacked 70 junta troops from Division 66 stationed at the school and monastery of Konethar Village outside Demoso Town on Monday evening, according to KRU.
A KRU spokesperson told The Irrawaddy on Wednesday that resistance fighters attacked the junta troops from close range.
During an intense firefight, 15 regime soldiers, including one believed to be a colonel, were killed.
Resistance fighters witnessed junta soldiers calling out that their senior officer had been killed and retreating from the clash, said the KRU spokesperson.
Citing military sources, some media reported on Wednesday that Lieutenant Colonel Aung Ko Oo, the commander of Light Infantry Battalion 6 under Division 66, was killed in the shootout.
However, the KRU said that their forces was unable to confirm the rank of the dead officer.
Regime forces targeted the area with heavy weapons in the aftermath of the clash, preventing resistance fighters from retrieving weapons abandoned by the junta soldiers.
One KRU fighter, Khun Soe Paing Thu, died on Tuesday morning after being wounded in the clash.
Junta troops left Konethar Village after the battle. The village’s residents fled several months ago when regime soldiers first deployed there.
In the aftermath of the clash, KRU asked the parallel National Unity Government and Myanmar people at home and abroad to supply them with ammunition.
“We can support ourselves, but we can’t fight without ammunition,” said the KRU’s spokesperson.
On Tuesday, seven military regime soldiers were reportedly killed in Kayah’s Loikaw Township when snipers from the Karenni Nationalities Defense Force and Central Region Special Operation Force (CRSOF) ambushed junta forces stationed on a hilltop in the township.
CRSOF said resistance fighters escaped from the area, despite regime troops responding to the attack with machine gun and mortar fire.
Myanmar junta forces nationwide are suffering daily losses from attacks by PDFs and ethnic armed organizations.