A powerful TNT bomb planted by Burmese military agents in Myitkyina, in Kachin State, Northern Burma, was removed on Thursday (Aug. 25) before it exploded, according to witnesses.
The mine was put on the main electrical transformer near the Kachin Baptist Church, Quarter Administrative Office and Quarter Market, which is a crowded area, residents said.
According to night security guards in the area, they found the mine planted on the transformer after they checked a man with a motorcycle stopped in front of the quarter office about 1:30 a.m.
While they were questioning the man, two other men suddenly appeared on the road, one from transformer and another from quarter office. Then, the three men quickly drove away on one motorcycle, said sources from the guards.
Before the three military agents left, the man on the bike told the guards that he stopped there to refuel. The guards rejected his story and forced him to leave because there was no fuel shop, the sources added.
A piece of wire and a TNT mine was soon discovered at the transformer.
The Quarter Administrative Office confirmed to the Kachin News Group the mine was removed by a bomb squad from the Burmese Army’s Northern Regional Command, based in Myitkyina on Thursday.
The Myitkyina Police Station No. 1 declined to answer questions from the Kachin News Group concerning the event and suggested people can go and ask questions at the police station, not by phone.
The nominally civilian government, formed in March, keeps denying the KIO is a political armed group and officially labeled it as an insurgent (or a terrorist group), at its first press conference in Naypyidaw, on August 12.
The new civil war between the government and KIO started in Kachin State and Northern Shan State when the Burmese Army attacked the Kachin Independence Army (KIA) at Sang Gang on June 9 under the pretence of protecting the Taping (Dapein) dams in N’mawk (Momauk) Township, Manmaw (Bhamo) district, in eastern Kachin State.