Nay Pyi Taw March 12
Environmental and eco-system destruction occurred in the surrounding areas of Taungrapar in Tanai region, Kachin State due to illegal mining of gold and amber, valued national resources of Myanmar, by KIA insurgents. Hence the Tatmadaw columns launched area-combing operations on 15 November 2017.
In retaliation for the Tatmadaw’s operations to stop their illegal activities, KIA insurgents were capturing road workers on Myitkyina- Sumprabum-Putao road beginning 28 January 2018 as forced labours to cut off the road sections, blowing up bridges and heavy machinery, launching armed and mine attacks against Tatmadaw convoys doing the routine operations. So, transport and communication was cut off and traffic came to a stop alongside the termination of the local commodity flow and rise in the commodity prices. Panic spread in Putao District among the departmental personnel and locals because of the food shortage.
KIA insurgents sent threatening letters to road and bridge construction companies which were carrying out repair works on Myitkyina-Sumprabum-Putao road, to suspend their works on January 27; destroyed Zanan steel truss Bailey Bridge at milepost No.111 near Sumprabum Town and set fire to vehicles and machinery owned by Mannpyitagun Company on the morning and afternoon of January 28; forced road workers from Mannpyitagun Company to dig holes at milepost No.9/7 near old Hteinpaing Village, milepost No.86 near old Nankhamkha Village and milepost No.81 near Kawapan Village on the morning of January 29; set fire to the floor of Zanan steel truss of Bailey Bridge on December 31; destroyed and set fire to one backhoe owned by Lapyae Company which finished road and bridge construction tasks at milepost No.179 near Wadat Village on February 11; and committed mine blast at a steel truss Bailey Bridge at milepost No.147/6-7 on Sumprabum-Putao road in Putao Township on February 19. KIA insurgent groups carried out destructive acts and took control of the route.
In addition, KIA insurgents committed ambushed attacks and mine attacks two times at Tatmadaw convoys carrying out regular admini-strative works in Putao Township on February 22 and March 8.
As the Tatmadaw columns started the tasks of combing the environs along the route on 16 February, eight skirmishes happened between the Tatmadaw columns and KIA insurgents.
Insurgencies and destructions of KIA insurgents caused difficulties to transport of vehicles and food shortage of the people. Hence, Kachin State government and the military command reported to the President Office and the Com mander-in-Chief of Defence Services on transportation of welfare equipment and supplies with the use of Tat madaw airplanes. As such, the Tatmadaw managed transport of welfare equipment and provisions for departmental personnel and local ethnic people in Putao District with the use of Tatmadaw airplanes from Myitkyina Airbase to Putao five times on 28 February and 1 March.
As the Tatmadaw columns took security measures along the Myitkyina-Sumprabum-Putao route while Public Works and road maintenance companies repaired the damaged road sections and bridges on 5 March. Therefore, vehicles of the Tatmadaw carrying welfare equipment and supplies left Myitkyina on 7 March and arrived in Putao on 10 March. Departmental personnel and local ethnic people are satisfied with resumption of running the vehicles, regular flow of commodity in the region and declining of commodity prices thanks to secured transport facilities.