More than 100 Myanmar military troops died in August during fighting with the Karen National Liberation Army (KNLA) in its Brigade 5 area in Papun district, Karen State, according to the ethnic armed group.
The KNLA is the military wing of the Karen National Union (KNU), which has been fighting against Myanmar governments and previous military regimes for autonomy and equality for more than seven decades.
The KNU’s Mutraw (Papun) district information department said on Tuesday that 118 junta soldiers were killed and 68 were injured in more than 130 clashes between the junta and KNLA troops in their district. One of those injured was a battalion commander, it said.
The KNLA said five of its soldiers were injured but it sustained no fatalities.
The military launched 120 artillery attacks on civilians’ farms and cultivations, destroying a total of six houses, and three civilians were beaten, it said.
The KNU said the military conducted aerial reconnaissance above Brigade 5 areas five times within the month.
Outside Papun district, military tensions remained in other areas controlled by the KNU/KNLA in Mon State’s Thaton, Karen State’s Paan, Kawkareik and Kyarinseikgyi, and Bago Region’s Nyaunglebin and Taungoo in August, with at least 20 clashes reported.
Since the Feb. 1 coup, some KNLA brigades, including Brigade 5, have been sheltering striking civil servants and providing combat training to civilians volunteering to fight the junta.
KNLA troops inflicted heavy casualties on the military, in addition to seizing at least five military camps near the Salween River along the Thai border between March and May.
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