1. At least 7 people, including a 51-year-old Myanmar refugee in Zokhawthar village, were killed.
2. The casualties occurred during intense fighting between the Tatmadaw and combined militant groups in the region.
3. The casualties include 7 cadres of the KIA, CNA, and CDF – a local resistance group.
Aizawl, Nov 13: At least 7 people including a 51-year-old Myanmar refugee taking shelter in Mizoram-Myanmar border Zokhawthar village in Champhai district were killed in an intense fighting between the Tatmadaw (Myanmar army) and the combined militant groups near Myanmar-Mizoram border areas.
Village council president (VCP) of Zokhawthar Lalmuanpuia told The Print over the phone that 7 cadres of the Kachin Independent Army (KIA), Chin National Army (CNA) and Chin Defence Force (CDF) a local resistance group were killed in the clashes. The combined forces of the KIA-CNA-CDF attacked the Myanmar army camps at upper Khawmawi and Rihkhawdar villages situated just across the Indian border and the firing began at dusk on Sunday.
Chungthianmawia (51) who has been taking shelter in Zokhawthar for a year was instantly killed when bullets fired from Khawmawi village by the Tatmadaw hit his eye on Monday morning.
Rev. Laldeihpau of the Evangelical Baptist Church led Chungthianmawi’s funeral at Zokhawthar Young Mizo Association (YMA) hall at 1 pm. He is survived by his wife, being treated for ailments at Tahan in Sagaing division of Myanmar and 7 young children.
Reports on the Myanmar army casualties are yet to be received while 6 Tatmadaw members were captured by the combined forces from the Rihkhawdar army camp.
The conditions of 5 persons out of 21 injured people were stated as critical and were referred to Aizawl where they will be admitted in different hospitals.
Those injured were first admitted at the Mercy Medical Health Centre at Zokhawthar while some of them were treated by doctors working under the Geneva-based Doctors Without Borders (Médecins Sans Frontières) before being taken to Champhai district hospital.
Lalmuanpuia said that the Myanmar army camp at Rihkhawdar was overrun by the KIA-CNA-CDF combined forces on Monday morning while efforts were being made to capture the Khawmawi camp.
Myanmar air force jet fighters and combat helicopters attacked Khawmawi and Rihkhawdar villages on Monday morning which resulted in more people being injured, YMA 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, Rihkhawdar and surrounding villages entered Zokhawthar and nearby villages in the 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 are only a distance of 30 metres divided by the Mizoram-Myanmar border small river Tiau while Rihkhawdar is around 4 kilometres from Zokhawthar.