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Myanmar Army camp overrun in clash with militant forces near Mizoram

Rising smoke envelops Khawmawi village in Myanmar, captured from the vantage point of Zokhawthar village in India


Aizawl: In the latest update on the clashes between Tatmadaw (the Myanmar army) and combined militant forces at villages adjoining Mizoram, the latter successfully overran and captured the Khawimawi Tatmadaw camp. This development forced 39 members of the Myanmar army to seek shelter at the Myanmar border Zokhawthar Police Station in Champhai district on Monday evening.

According to Zokhawthar Village Council President (VCP) Lalmuanpuia, the 39 Myanmar army personnel fled Khawmawi army camp towards Mizoram after it was overrun by the combined forces of Kachin Independent Army (KIA), Chin National Army (CNA), and the Chin Defence Force (CDF), a local civil militia group. “In desperation, they surrendered to the nearest Police Station (Zokhawthar) along with all their arms and ammunition,” stated Lalmuanpuia.
A senior state police official informed Zoram Chronicle that the Ministry of Home Affairs has been notified, and the MHA has instructed that the Tatmadaw personnel be handed over to the Assam Rifles, responsible for guarding the 404-km-long Mizoram-Myanmar international border. 
The official added, “It is most likely that the Ministry of External Affairs will make arrangements to hand over the Myanmar army personnel to the Myanmar military government through the Assam Rifles.”
Regarding the Tatmadaw personnel in the Rihkhawdar camp, the VCP mentioned that the KIA-CNA-CDF combined forces have captured the nearby Rihkhawdar camp, where they took seven Myanmar soldiers into custody. The fate of the remaining soldiers in the camp is uncertain, with the VCP stating, “The rest might have been killed in the attacks on the camp, and we cannot have any information on how many Myanmar soldiers died.”
As previously reported, eight people, including a 51-year-old refugee in Myanmar border Zokhawthar 
village, were killed in the clashes that began on Sunday night. The KIA-CNA-CDF combined forces lost seven cadres, with 19 cadres and two civilians injured at Zokhawthar (Mizoram) due to bullets fired from the Myanmar army camps.
Out of the 20 people injured at Zokhawthar, seven have been referred to Aizawl for medical treatment, while the rest are receiving treatment at the Champhai district hospital.
The firing began at dusk on Sunday.
“Myanmar air force jet fighters and combat helicopters attacked Khawmawi and Rihkhawdar villages on Monday morning which resulted in more people being injured,” a Young Mizo Association leader at Zokhawthar said. 
He said that the KIA cadres arrived in the area from Kachin state last week and were planning a joint attack against the two Tatmadaw camps
Around 5,000 refugees from Khawmawi, Rihkhawdarand surrounding villages entered Zokhawthar and nearby villages in Champhai district following the intense battle in Khawmawi and Rihkhawdar.
Champhai sub-headquarters YMA made appeals to members of its branches to be ready to donate blood at the Champhai district hospital for the people injured in armed clashes near the border. YMA members from 7 branches have donated 49 units of blood and the donors included 12 women.
Zokhawthar in Mizoram and Khawmawi village in Chin state of Myanmar only a distance of 30 metres divided by the Mizoram-Myanmar border small river Tiau while Rihkhawdar is around 4 kilometres from Zokhawthar.

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