January 31, 2024. (Than Lwin Times)

The Karen National Union (KNU) has announced the downing of a Junta helicopter near Thinganyinaung village in Myawaddy Township, Karen State on January 29th.

The helicopter crashed resulted n 5 fatalities, including a Brigadier General, and the video of this epic event has been shared on social media.

On January 29th, around 2:00 PM, a Mi-35P attack helicopter and Euro-copter 365, belonging to the Junta’s joint task force departing from the Headquarters in Mawlamyine Township, Mon State, were ambushed and fired upon by Karen National Liberation Army (KNLA) troops, the armed wing of KNU and the Cobra PDF column.

KNU’s released video depicts joint resistance forces led by KNLA firing a .5 machine gun at an airborne Military Council helicopter. A frontline source reported

“We shot at it with machine guns, sniper rifles and other weapons.

This chopper downed in Karen State is the third aircraft the junta has lost to resistance attacks in January. So far anti-regime resistance forces across the country have shot down three fighter jets and five choppers since the coup.

According to the KNU’s statement, the helicopter crash resulted in the fatalities of 5 Military Council officers: Brigadier General Aye Min Naung, three majors, and a captain.

It is known that the deceased Brigadier General had been appointed the commander of the 44th Division, and another casualty included the commander of the 9th Light Infantry Battalion stationed in Bilin Township.

The KNLA confirmed the success of its strategic ambush, reporting the downing of the Euro-copter 365 in the vicinity of the operations base of KNU’s 6th Brigade and PDF allies in Dooplaya District .The other helicopter the Mi-35P escaped back to its base in Mon State.

The KNU resistance stronghold Karen State, is also home to several PDF groups that were trained by the KNLA, an armed wing of the Karen National Union. Since 2022, they have fought together against junta troops in Karen, which borders Thailand.

Brigadier General Aye Min Naung ‘s was on his way to assume his new assignment being flown to Light Infantry Battalion 355 in the Thingan Nyinaung area in Myawaddy when the KNLA/ Cobra PDF shot down his helicopter.

The former -commander Brigadier General Win Naung Soe had been demoted over his failure to defuse the conflict the Junta’s BGF ( Border Guard Force) who had declared the BGF no longer wanted to be a part of the Myanmar military.

This is another major landmark in the Junta’s string of military setbacks in trying to stem the advancing resistance on many different fronts.

Now the military’s grip on Myawaddy has been shaken up by the BGF’s withdrawal from the frontline in battling the KNLA’s 6th,and its corresponding loss of authority in the Shwe Kokko casino cyber-scam nexus.

This changing configuration of forces can only weaken China’s confidence in the long-term durability and longevity of the Military Council and consolidate the strength of the resistance in Karen State.

News – Than Lwin Times
Photo – KNU

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