Myanmar Army launches attacks on ethnic rebel forces in north-east
Myanmar government forces have started launching attacks on the headquarters of the military wing of one of the country’s ethnic rebel groups, the group said on Saturday.
Tang San, a battalion commander for the Kachin Independence Army, said government forces have been using “fighter jets and heavy weapons continuously” on the headquarters in northeastern Myanmar since early on Friday.
Ethnic rebel groups in the north-east have been waging attacks on government forces since last month.
They have said that the attacks are in response to military pressure, but that they are still interested in peace talks to try to end decades of fighting between the government and ethnic minority groups.
Lamai Gum Ja, a member of the Peace Talk Creation Group, a committee of businessmen and community leaders from Kachin state involved in the peace process, said there have been reports of casualties on both sides from the military’s most recent attacks, though the numbers are unclear.
He also said his group has written letters to the country’s leader, Aung San Suu Kyi, but has not heard back from her. “She has been quiet about it, but the fighting is getting more and more serious,” he said.
Khin Maung Myint, a lower house member of parliament from a constituency in Kachin, said that the military is doing whatever it wants. “The military doesn’t want to change,” he said.
Government officials were not immediately available for comment.