A battalion of the Myanmar Army launched multiple attacks on civilians in several villages of Waingmaw Township, Kachin State, in the opening weeks of August. Four attacks over the course of five days damaged property and left villagers terrified.

On the evening of 3 August Light Infantry Battalion 58 shelled the village of Laban, damaging three houses and killing ten pigs. 

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A house damaged by artillery fire in Waingmaw Township [Image credit: Irrawaddy]

The following day further artillery fire on Laban destroyed a house, and villagers were forced to remove an unexploded shell between Laban and the village of Tharyargon. On 5 August other villages in the region were attacked.

On the evening of Sunday 8 August the battalion shelled at least four villages, including Laban, in a bombardment which lasted for 30 minutes, as well as firing at the villages with rifles. “We were breathless with terror,” said a villager from Laban. “We prayed for our lives.”

In May 2021 at least two people were killed and ten others injured in military strikes on villages near Momauk Township, Kachin State. The Myanmar military – also known as the Tatmadaw – has for many years persecuted the Christian-majority Kachin, Chin, and Karen ethnic groups, a situation which has worsened since the February 2021 military coup. An estimated 95% of Kachin people are Christians.

Related Countries

Myanmar (Burma)

This Article originally appeared on Barnabas Fund