Nay Pyi Taw, 23 Feb — A military funeral was held to bury the urns of bone ash of officers and other tanks who lost their lives while discharging national defence duties in Laukkai area was held at the Memorial for Fallen Heros in Lashio on Monday afternoon.
Present were Lt-Gen Aung Than Htut of the Office of the Commander-in-Chief (Army), Commander of North-East Command Maj-Gen Aung Soe, senior officers from the command, officers and other ranks from battalions, family members, members of Myanmar Veterans’ Organization and departmental officials.
First, the Guard of Honour saluted the fallen soldiers while the military band playing military bugles.
Then, Lt-Gen Aung Than Htut, the commander and officers laid the wreaths for fallen soldiers and buried the urns of bone ash of them.
In the morning, military helicopters transported food, medicines and other necessary household goods for officers and other ranks, their families, government employees and local people in Laukkai and two Japanese nationals who were stranded during fighting and rescued to a military camp in Kongyan, Dr Minoru Yashida and Mr Akio Takahashi of JICA, to Lashio where Commander of North-East Command Maj-Gen Aung Soe handed over them to the Ministry of Border Affairs.
Military columns of the Tatmadaw captured the strategic hills of Kokang insurgent groups near 18-mile junction on Laukkai-Kongyan road on 22 February and combed the area for insurgents on Monday, leading to the seizure of one M-21, 7 M-22s, one Winchester, 14 M-22 magazines, 508 rounds of M-22, two plastic landmines, one landmine, 25 grenades, three uniforms, 2 four-wheel vehicles and 7 motorcycles.
In the afternoon, fighting erupted between military columns and the insurgents near border post 127 and Tatmadaw personnel captured six bodies of insurgents and 4 M-22s. Three Tatmadaw personnel died and 7 others injured during the fighting.
Kokang insurgents also attacked the convoy of prisoners from Ceaw prison, displaced locals and government employees leading to Lashio and withdrew when Tatmadaw columns responded them with the help of air support. A staff from the correctional department, 44 female prisoners and a Tatmadaw personnel were injured in the fighting.
In Yangon on Monday, families of 30 Comrades, Union Minister for Culture U Aye Myint Kyu and wellwishers donated K 220,751,200, US$ 2,500, S$ 300, Baht 1,000 for Tatmadaw personnel discharged duties in Laukkai and Yangon Commander Maj-Gen Tun Tun Naung and officers accepted the cash and goods worth K 5,591,920. A total of K 754,655,700, US$ 5,000, S$ 300, Baht 1,000 and goods worth K 17,189,120 have been received for the personnel since 14 February.
As stability has been restored in Laukkai area after Tatmadaw personnel combed the area for insurgents, local people who fled to border and Lashio are beginning to their villages. A total of 796 people including 539 people from 155 families and 257 migrant workers returned to Laukkai up to 22 February.—Myawady