Zahkung Ting Ying, longtime leader of the now defunct New Democratic Army-Kachin (NDA-K) has predicted that government forces will completely “wipeout” the Kachin Independence Army. Ting Ying's comments were made during a recent meeting with military officials in Pangwa, according to sources in Kachin state.
During the meeting Brig-Gen Zeyar Aung, commander of Burma Army’s Northern Regional Military Command, reportedly concurred with the former NDA-K chief saying that the army's overwhelming firepower will spell the end of the KIA.
Despite these prediction troops from the KIA remain in control of much of countryside surrounding Pangwa, a town that for many years was the headquarters of the NDA-K.
On April 25, an estimated force about 400 KIA soldiers briefly took over Pangwa and overran bases belonging to the government's border guard force. The KIA troops later withdrew from Pangwa a few days later when Burmese military helicopters and fighter jets bombed KIA positions.
Currently Pangwa is controlled by Burma army troops who took over following large scale defections from the local border guard force which is made up of many ex-NDA-K troops.
Residents of north of Pangwa say that heavy fighting is still taking place nearby especially north at Hpre.
In 2009 the NDA-K officially ceased to exist when its standing army of about 1,000 troops was absorbed by the national border guard force. Many NDA-K soldiers were upset with their leader Ting Ying's decision to dissolve the group and join the border guard force.
The NDA-K was the successor to a KIO unit led by Ting Ying's that broke-away in 1968 to join forces with the Burma Communist Party (BCP). Ting Ying created the NDA-K following the dissolution of the BCP in 1989. The NDA-K ceasefire agreement with Burma's central government enabled the group to profit from the cross border timber trade at Kambaiti and Pangwa.
In November 2010 one year after dissolving the NDA-K Ting Ying was elected to Burma's parliament as Independent MP.
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