“The military regime will come to an end, not the country. We are re-establishing the country.”

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The miliary council recently convened an emergency meeting of National Defence and Security Council, which is normally organized at the end of  term for state of emergency as they have suffered losses in ‘Operation 1027’ of the Three Brotherhood Alliance’. 

At the meeting, junta chief Senior General Min Aung Hlaing said that the MNDAA (Kokang) launched Operation 1027 to resume their influence with using profit from drug trafficking.

This interview with Li Kyarwen, spokesperson of MNDAA is about their response to the military’s accusation, ongoing armed conflicts and the military’s loss in their outpost.

TLT: The junta chief has said that the armed clashes in northern Shan state were carried out by the Kokang army to resume narcotic drug trade trafficking and influence, and the Kokang army has also involved in online scan (Kyaphyan). What is the response of MNDAA?

Li Kyarwen: We have totally eradicated narcotic drug under the leadership of our leader U Peng Jiasheng since 2000. It was a historic success. The poppy plantation has been substituted with cultivation of tea plant and sugarcane. But the military chief has accused us of getting profits from drug production. We wonder if there are still narcotic drug in this area. If it is, puppet Kokang group  is likely to operate in this area. They cannot do it without the assistance of Myanmar military. It is also needed to inspect these revenues. In addition, the whole country has known about online scam which is widely spreading in Laukkai. The military’s action against these crimes happened only when we carried out the attacks. The miliary never did it before. Actually, the bosses of online scam have been rescued by flights, and their employees were sent back to China. We wonder where the boss are and they will resume it at another place.

   TLT: The military chief has also said that MNDAA launched attack to restore its power in Laukkai area, while the TNLA and the Kokang are trying to establish Palaung state and Kokang state respectively. What is your comment on this?

Li Kyarwen: These are just their assumption and accusation. The objective of this operation has been announced in our open letter and the declaration of our operation. So, we have no comments on this accusation.

TLT: Pro Tem President U Myint Swe said that   the country might be divided into pieces due to Operation 1027. What is your response to it?
Li Kyarwen: There are many questions about his status; what is his role at the meting, what is his situation after the coup and why he attended this meeting. We do not accept this idea. Our operation is to end military dictatorship, to establish a new federal Union and to eradicate online scams. In fact, the military regime will come to an end, not the country. We are re-establishing the country.

TLT: It has been two weeks of Operation 1027 of Three Brotherhood Alliance. How many towns and facilities of military have been controlled by the Three Brotherhood Alliance?

Li Kyarwen: We have already occupied nearly 150 temporary, small and major facilities of the military.

Li Kyarwen: The military is reinforcing its troops in northern Shan state, and there are regularly conducting aerial strikes and artillery shelling.

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