19 people killed in clash between Myanmar army, ethnic rebels, says Military

Some 32 people, including 27 civilians, three policemen, and two local paramilitary forces were injured in the attack led by the Ta'ang National Liberation Army, or TNLA, on Muse town, a major border crossing with China, he added.

Rights defenders say clashes in the north near the main border gate with China have ramped up since January as the global community focuses on the Rohingya crisis in the west of the country.

The clash occurred between the armed forces and militants of the National liberation army TA ang, one of several rebel groups of Myanmar Pro-autonomy on the North of the country.

A statement posted on the page of Myanmar's commander-in-chief said military columns were in pursuit of the "terrorist insurgents".

Suspected ethnic minority insurgents have launched attacks in eastern Myanmar, leaving 19 people dead and 29 wounded.

He challenged the government statistics about the civilian toll from Saturday's violence, saying it was much lower.

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The TNLA spokesman said he believed some residents had fled over the border.

In 2017, Chinese authorities estimated a flare-up of violence to have sent more than 20,000 refugees across the border, and fighting in 2009 and 2015 displaced tens of thousands of people. It has to conduct minor military operations due to the deployment of large number of troops by Tatmadaw and intensified offensive attacks on its ally, the Kachin Independence Army (KIA).

The insurgency in the northeast - which is separate from the Rohingya crisis to the west - is one of some two dozen ethnic minority rebellions that have roiled Myanmar's border regions since independence in 1948.

The latest attack was a setback for the country's civilian leader, Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, whose stated priority amid a stuttering transition from full military rule has been to usher in peace.

Reverend Hkalam Samsun, chairman of the Kachin Baptist Convention, said the Kachin people were "disappointed" with Suu Kyi.

(Copyright © 2015. All Rights Reserved.)
 
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