Fri 28 Jul 2006
Filed under: News,On The Border
Two civil servants were killed and five locals injured in an attack by suspected insurgents in eastern Myanmar, state media reported Friday.
The attack happened Wednesday as a group of local government workers was visiting a village in Bago division, some 160 kilometers (100 miles) north of Yangon, the official New Light of Myanmar newspaper reported.
The group hit a landmine and came under fire from the insurgents, the paper said. Two of the civil servants were killed and five villagers were injured, it added.
“The local battalion are in hot pursuit of the enemy,” the New Light of Myanmar said, adding that the injured were being treated at Taungoo People’s Hospital.
The paper did not say who was behind the attack.
The incident took place near a region that has seen heavy fighting since February, when Myanmar’s military government launched an offensive against ethnic Karen rebels.
The military has been battling the rebel Karen National Union (KNU) in an area around Taungoo in a campaign that rights groups say has displaced thousands of people.
UN rights experts have condemned the government’s offensive, accusing the military of targetting civilians in its attacks.
The KNU has fought the government for more than 50 years in one of the world’s longest-running insurgencies, seeking autonomy for its region near the Thai border.
The military has reached ceasefires with 17 other ethnic armed groups, but talks with the KNU fell apart two years ago and have yet to resume.