KAREN STATE, Myanmar - According to local sources and media reports, several junta offices in Karen State's Payathonzu town burned down Saturday night after being targeted in arson attacks by an area resistance force.
The military council's city development committee and general administration offices, which were located in front of an army base on Bayinnaung Rd, as well as those for immigration and military intelligence, which were located across from the town's market, were destroyed in fires set after 8 p.m., during which time locals heard gunfire.
"All of the torched places were reduced to ashes, and six or seven shops connected to the general administration office were also destroyed," said a resident of Payathonzu, which is located in Kyainseikgyi Township near the Thai border.
In an interview with the local press, the Payathonzu Guerrilla Force (PGF) claimed responsibility for the attack, urging members of the junta's administrative mechanism to resign and join the Civil Disobedience Movement aimed at overthrowing the regime.
Following the arson, more clashes erupted in the area. The Lion Battalion Commando, part of the new Kawthoolei Army led by deposed Karen National Defence Organisation leader Saw Nerdah Mya, ambushed multiple junta columns from Kyainseikgyi town towards Payathonzu.
A local woman told the press that shops in Payathonzu were closed until Sunday afternoon and that Myanmar army soldiers had been seen patrolling the town.