Myanmar junta troops returning from Chin State’s Matupi suffered heavy casualties after being ambushed, said the Chinland Defense Force-Mindat (CDF-Mindat).
CDF-Mindat attacked the military regime convoy comprising over 70 vehicles, including two tanks, on Monday as it traveled the twisting Matupi-Mindat Road, a CDF-Mindat commander told The Irrawaddy.
The convoy left Magwe Region in late March to reinforce junta troops in Matupi Township. Resistance groups repeatedly ambushed the convoy as it made its way to Matupi, inflicting casualties. The convoy left Matupi to return to Mindat on April 27 and has since been attacked a number of times.
“On Monday, we clashed from 11am to 1pm. We witnessed that ten junta soldiers were killed by us. More might have been killed in our subsequent mine attacks,” said the CDF-Mindat commander.
The resistance group also attacked the vanguard of the convoy consisting of 30 junta soldiers at a different location on Monday, he added.
“Mindat is over 100 miles from Matupi, and it takes less than a day to travel between those two towns. But they [the convoy] have been on the road for more than ten days now. So you can guess the intensity of our attacks. We can’t allow them to go back comfortably,” the commander told The Irrawaddy.
Since the convoy entered Mindat Township on April 30, CDF-Mindat has repeatedly ambushed it.
Over 1,000 people who live along the Matupi-Mindat Road have fled into the forest out of fear of junta raids. Regime troops have reportedly damaged their houses.
A Mindat resident who asked for anonymity said: “Villagers are still in the forest. They have not yet been able to return home. Junta soldiers didn’t torch their houses, but have damaged the roofs of their houses by firing at them. They also broke the walls of wooden houses and smashed the windows of brick houses. They also smashed furniture not only in houses but also in churches.”
Clashes continued on Wednesday on the road with the Mindat-based Light Infantry Battalion 274 firing artillery in support of the convoy as it moved along the road.
In March, successive ambushes also forced the convoy to spend over ten days traveling the 102-mile road as it made its way to Matupi.
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