Military


A top official in Burma’s President’s Office has urged the United States Congress not to block military cooperation between the two countries, warning that a bill under consideration would only increase the isolation of the Burmese army at a crucial time.
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Leaders of two Shan and Pa-O rebel groups that recently clashed because of a territorial dispute, held discussions on Thursday in an effort to resolve the argument, a rebel officer said.
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The leaders of Burma’s ethnic armed groups want President Thein Sein to get involved in peace talks, as negotiations toward a nationwide ceasefire deal continue.
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More than 30 political parties were represented at a meeting held in Yangon on September 3 for preliminary talks on the political dialogue due to begin after a national ceasefire agreement is signed.
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Armed members of the Karen Peace Council (KPC) confronted police in Karen State capital Hpa-an on Wednesday following the arrest of a high-ranking officer.
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The United Nationalities Federal Council (UNFC), an umbrella organisation of ethnic armed groups, is to hold an official meeting with the National League for Democracy (NLD) and other Burmese pro-democracy groups for the first time.
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The nationwide ceasefire accord, development projects and drug eradication were among the top issues discussed when Shan, Wa and Mongla army leaders met with Burma’s president and military chief earlier this week.
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The Tatmadaw has agreed to discuss the potential formation of a federal army, one of the ethnic armed groups’ key demands in the ongoing peace process.
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The Nationwide Ceasefire Coordination Team (NCCT)—a 16-member body which has been negotiating a nationwide ceasefire with Naypyidaw on behalf of most of Burma’s major armed ethnic groups—would like civil society organizations to refrain from participating in the upcoming tripartite peace talks on political issues, said NCCT leader Nai Hong Sar. The three-party peace talks will involve the NCCT, political parties, and the Burmese government.
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Leaders of ethnic armed groups say they want Daw Aung San Suu Kyi to observe the signing of the nationwide ceasefire agreement and the accompanying political dialogue. Nai Han Tha, leader of the Nationwide Ceasefire Coordination Team (NCCT), said on August 19 the groups wanted the NLD chairperson to take a larger role in the peace process as a leading representative of the public.
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The Burmese government’s Union Peacemaking Working Committee (UWPC) and ethnic rebel groups’ Nationwide Ceasefire Coordination Team (NCCT) met to discuss the signing of a nationwide ceasefire agreement in Rangoon last week.
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The Burmese government and ethnic leaders say they will hold another round of peace talks early next month to hammer out final disagreements before setting a date for the nationwide ceasefire accord.
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One civilian was shot dead and another hospitalized with a gunshot wound following a clash between government troops and the Ta’ang National Liberation Army (TNLA) on Monday morning in northern Shan State, according to the ethnic rebel group.
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In a move that a local politician has said was the first of its kind in Kachin State, the Burmese Army apologised to villagers displaced by recent clashes in Hpakant Township between government troops and the Kachin Independence Army (KIA).
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There is not a conversation or discussion on the Myanmar peace process that does not include two words: “trust” and “distrust”. As far as the peace process is concerned, no matter who speaks on any given occasion, the two words are either mentioned in passing or featured prominently.
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About 200 Kachin civilians in Kachin State’s Hpakant Township have been newly displaced by clashes between the Burma Army and the Kachin Independence Army (KIA) in recent days, according to local leaders and Kachin rebel sources, who said that the fighting erupted after government forces entered a rebel-controlled ruby mining area.
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Generally, a trip to this border town is not easy. Though Laiza is situated in Kachin State, visitors are not normally able to get here directly as the road is blocked by the Burmese military thanks to recent fighting with the rebel Kachin Independent Army, which calls the town its headquarters. Instead, travelers must take a roundabout trip to the Chinese side before crossing over and entering Laiza from Burma’s northern neighbor.
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The peace process undertaken by Burma’s government and the country’s ethnic armed groups could take several generations to complete, according to an analyst watching the negotiations closely.
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Several political parties in Myanmar said Tuesday that the government appeared to be rushing to conclude a nationwide cease-fire agreement with armed ethnic groups without enabling them to adequately address the key concerns of the groups.
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Villagers in Sagaing Division’s Kanbalu have reached an agreement with the Burmese army after negotiations over the return of their farmland, a local resident said on Monday.
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