DVB: Peace marchers approach Mandalay division

Peace marchers approach Mandalay division (click to view article)

Activists marching 800 miles from Rangoon to the Kachin rebel stronghold in Laiza arrived in Pegu division’s Yadashe township yesterday morning.

Yan Naing Htun, an organiser in the march joined by more than 60 people said authorities briefly stopped the group upon entering Yadashe town.

“It’s just a routine sign-in upon entering towns – acknowledging we won’t give public speeches, carry flags or distribute leaflets. Now we’re in the town,” said Yan Naing Htun.

The group began marching from Rangoon’s City Hall on 21 January to Laiza in Kachin state, where the Kachin Independence Army (KIA) have been repelling a massive ground and air offensive from the Burmese military. They are scheduled to arrive today in Yeni town on the border with Mandalay division.

The activists have pledged to walk 14 hours a day to protest the government’s ongoing conflict with the KIA. The trip will take approximately two months to complete.

The Burmese army is on the outskirts of the rebel stronghold after capturing the KIA’s final hill station outside of Laiza last weekend.