Nagaland: NSCN (K), Indian Army clash along Indo-Myanmar border
DIMAPUR, June 29, 2018: Indian Army commandos on Wednesday clashed with members of the NSCN (K) along the Indo-Myanmar border in Mon district, with the army reportedly claiming that it attacked an NSCN (K) camp in Myanmar, inflicting some casualties.
While the Indo Asian News Service (IANS) quotes an army source saying the Indian Army crossed the international border and inflicted casualties on the NSCN (K), this could not be independently confirmed.
Police sources from Mon district while confirming the Wednesday firing incident said the Assam Rifles reportedly conducted some sort of 'exercise' along the Indo-Myanmar border area on Wednesday afternoon. The firing which started at 1:40pm lasted for around 40 minutes.
Quoting reports from the police team from Mon HQ, who went to monitor the situation, a police official said the firing appears to have taken place near settlement called Ganyu, which is a breakaway of Chenmono village, the last village under Indian territory. The area falls under Chen sub division, Mon district.
"There were around 5 or 6 houses at Ganyu. However, its inhabitants had ran away when the firing took place and therefore we could not find any witness to ascertain what actually transpired," the police official said.
After Chenmoho, just across the border there is a check post of the NSCN (K) and some kilometers ahead, a Burmese village called Throillo.
While it could not be confirmed whether the firing took place inside Indian Territory or across the international border, the police source said there have been no reports of any casualties. It also cannot be confirmed whether the firing was one sided or there was counter-firing, the police official added.
The IANS report however quoted their army source as stating that "a team of 12 Para Commandos attacked a check post of the NSCN-K (National Socialist Council of Nagaland-Khaplang) situated in the vicinity of its Shwelo camp inside Myanmar on Wednesday."
"The gunfight continued for half hour," an army official was quoted as stating. "The rebels suffered at least four to five casualties," he said, adding there was no casualty on the army side, according to the report.
The commandos were reportedly equipped with rocket launchers, mortars and automatic grenade launcher to carry out the strike, adding the operation lasted for two hours after being started at 2 p.m.
According to the official, the area of operation was 3 km beyond border pillar 151 on the India-Myanmar border across Nagaland's Mon district.
The pursuit of the rebels was undertaken after three Assam Rifles personnel and three others were wounded in an ambush by the NSCN (K) in Mon on June 18.
Meanwhile NSCN (K) Deputy Kilonser, Colonel (Retd) Isak Sumi confirmed that Indian Army "in huge numbers" crossed Chenmoh village and arrived at the international boundary some kilometres away from the Naga Army forward post, but were detected.
"On realisation that their presence has already been detected they resorted to blank firings randomly for several minutes to which the Naga Army responded and prevented any further advance. Casualties could not be ascertained," Sumi wrote on his Facebook page.
With IANS inputs
The NSCN (K) on Thursday stated that "the only guarantee to peace and calm is for India to abort military operations, unconditional withdrawal of her forces from Naga country and allow peaceful political process to take place."
"Armed clashes between the Naga Army and occupational Indian Army have been occurring since the past six-seven decades owing to illegal invasion and militarisation of Naga country by the Indian Government. Caught in the vortex, the Naga civil population has borne maximum brunt in collateral destruction and desperate backlash by Indian armed forces," a press note from NSCN (K) Deputy Kilonser, MIP, Col (Retd) Isak Sumi stated.
It said that the hostilities would cease as soon as the Government of India "withdraws her Armed Forces from Naga territories."
It also said that the present generation of Nagas "must realise the irrevocable fact that India is solely responsible for the volatile situations and the safety of Nagas lives and properties being imperiled."
The NSCN (K) added that peace and stability will remain evasive "as long as India resorts to her age old and double standard colonial 'carrot and stick' policies."
It also asked the "section of Nagas" blaming the Naga Army and NSCN for the recent armed violence to "understand that history cannot be twisted for their vested convenience."
The NSCN (K) stated that the citizens of Mon district "presently undergoing the terror and violence must ask the Indian Forces to vacate the civilian areas and village vicinities." It further alleged that the Indian security forces have been "trespassing international boundary every time to provoke and encounter the Naga Army as a result of which series of attacks and counter attacks has been occurring."
The NSCN (K) meanwhile cautioned against "deliberately misinterpreting or misrepresenting the scenario."
TNT New with Morung Express inputs