Myanmar Armed Rebels seize military outpost near Thai border.
An armed ethnic group in Myanmar known as the Karen National Liberation Army seized a military outpost near the Thai border on Tuesday in a sign that civil conflict will continue even as the junta pledged over the weekend. to end the violence.
The KNLA, the armed wing of the Karen National Union (KNU), Myanmar’s oldest armed ethnic group, attacked a military border post in Thaw Le Hta, near the city of Mae Hong Song, in northwestern Thailand, lo That caused several casualties, Saw Taw Nee, head of KNU’s Department of Foreign Affairs, said by phone on Tuesday.
The attack comes after Myanmar Army Chief Min Aung Hlaing, who orchestrated a military coup on February 1, agreed to an immediate cessation of violence during a special summit held Saturday by the Association of Southeast Asian Nations. of 10 members. Since overthrowing the civilian-led government, the junta has killed more than 750 protesters across the country with nearly 3,500 more arrested or sentenced to prison, according to the Political Prisoner Assistance Association.
There was no immediate comment on Tuesday’s attack by the Myanmar military.
Saw Taw Nee said more than 30,000 residents have fled to safe areas since the national army, or Tatmadaw carried out deadly airstrikes in March. At that time, the fighter jets came out in retaliation for a group attack on a military base in which 10 soldiers were killed and another eight were captured.
Earlier this month, close allies of Myanmar’s detained civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi joined ethnic groups to form a new unity government, increasing the chances of a protracted conflict with the junta. As part of their training, the members were also pushing for the formation of a union army to take on the military. Saw Taw Nee said at the time that such an army is “essential”, although it would take time as negotiations are ongoing.
“The junta is making people live in fear on the mainland as well as in the KNU-controlled areas,” he said. “We, the KNU, agree to form the federal army in principle, but it is not realistic for it to be formed in a short period of time.”