The step-up military strategy in Karenni Region

Myanmar Spring Chronicle – June 24 Scenes

MoeMaKa, June 25, 2023

The step-up military strategy in Karenni Region

Military activities in the region, which has been officially called Kayah State since the era of Myanmar’s socialist government but which the region’s political and military organizations call the Karenni region, have escalated. The anti-military council forces such as KNPP, KNDF, and the former Border Guard Force, now called by its original name, KNPLF (Karenni National People’s Liberation Front), have adopted a strategy to militarily control the areas east of the Thanlwin River in the Karenni region and started attacking in those areas.

You can read in the news that the police station in Mese, which is on the road connecting with Mae Hong Son of Thailand, and the military council’s border posts on the Thai-Myanmar border have been seized in recent days.


Before the 2010 election, the NaAFa junta (State Peace and Development Council) regime transformed some of the ceasefire groups into Border Guard Forces (BGF), including the KNPLF based in the Karenni region. Along with the KNPLF, the armed group of the Kayan New Land Party also transformed into a BGF.


After the military coup, the KNPLF and the Kayan New Land Party, which transformed into the BGFs before the 2010 election, did not engage in joint attacks with the military council like the BGFs in Karen State. Later, it can be said that they started working together with the revolutionary forces.

The Karenni region, despite its small size and sparse population, is crucial to the armed resistance forces since it borders both Thailand and Karen State. On the other hand, there is a distance of only 40–50 miles from Mobye and Pinlaung to Nay Pyi Taw, so it is in a strategic position to threaten Nay Pyi Taw, the administrative capital of the military council. I am sure that the military council already knows this strategically important information. That’s why the military council has repeatedly mobilized its forces and carried out a 4-cut strategy, numerous offensives, and airstrikes in the Karenni region. Currently, under the intense offensives and cuts, it is possible that the armed organizations in the Karenni region are trying to step up to the level of camp capture battles from contact battles, and the battle to control the city of Mese. More than half of the Karenni region’s population has been fleeing the war for decades. If people are not able to work well in their livelihoods for years, the responsibilities of providing food in the refugee camps may become more difficult as the years pass. On the question of how long military activities will take, weapons and money are needed to fight the war, as well as food and health care for the locals, etc., which will be the responsibility of the armed organizations or administrative organizations, so the armed organizations will have to work out the refugee care.

On the side of the military council, instead of taking care of the local population and conducting operations cautiously so that they do not fall into danger, they consider the locals as the enemy’s supporters, and often adopt strategy and tactics to make them suffer. It is also seen that they are attacking not only militarily but also by blocking the transportation of food and medicine to make it difficult for the locals to move and collect food.

By looking at these facts, it is necessary to understand that there is no much time for revolutionary forces to make a major change, although the time needed for Karenni region liberation will only take 6 months to a maximum of 2 years, rather than taking many years as in other regions.