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The Kokang rebel attack kills seven Myanmar troops: National media
The Myanmar armed forces murdered seven Myanmar troops in an assault by ethnical insurgents on an Armed Forces post in the country's isolated north-eastern frontier area and injured 20 more, the state press said on Monday. The state-backed Global New Light of Myanmar reported that on December 10th, the Kokang tribe started the "unprovoked" assault, despite on-going discussions between the federal administration and insurgent brokers for a national ceasefire deal.
According to a statement by the state newspaper Myanma Ahlin, the heavy armoured insurgents invaded and besieged the military base near Kunlong, some 30 kilometres from the China frontier, for two whole-day. The Kokang are mainly indigenous to North Shan State and the group has a small force of about 3,000 soldiers known as the Myanmar National Democratic Alliance ("MNDAA").
In 1989, the MNDAA concluded a treaty of agreement with the Chinese authorities, but the group collided with Myanmar's army in 2009, resulting in the displacement of ten thousand of the country's southwest migrants. She is also an ally of the Ta'ang National Liberation Army (TNLA) and the Kachin Independence Army (KIA)-Myanmar's last large ethnically based militarized groups that have not reached a bi-lateral ceasefire with Naypyidaw since President Thein Sein's quasi-civilian administration took over from the former army in 2011.
Irrawaddy on-line magazine quotes Aik Kyaw, spokeswoman of Aik Kyaw of TNLA, as saying that a joint squad of Alliance forces engaged in fighting with the administration last weekend, but that the dispute took place about 100 kilometres westward of the place mentioned in the state press. A spokesman said there had been an increased number of goverment forces in the Tamoenye and Kutkai districts, which led to conflicts on 10 and 13 December.
"May Aik Kyaw said to the Irrawaddy, "There was no trap for our Allies, except for the fights in these townships. Aik Kyaw said to the Irrawaddy. ChristmasEfforts discussions for the signing of a national ceasefire by the Union Peace Working Committee (UPWC) negotiator of the federal administration and the Nationalwide Ceasefire Coordination Team (NCCT), which represent more than a dozen African Brazilian rebels, have not reached a settlement since a September summit.
Insurgent groups have demanded more independence under a federation system, but the army is pressing for a powerful centralised Myanmar administration built on the country's 2008 junta-backed state. Myanmar Peace Centre (MPC) in the Yangon Trade Centre and NCCT said on Monday that they had declared their readiness to restart the national ceasefire negotiations before Christmas.
NCCT high-ranking member Khun Okka said the administration had not fully declared the recent confrontations with insurgent forces, which included a mortuary assault on a KIA military trainings centre in Kachin State in the north of Myanmar, in which more than a dozen Kadets were wounded and 23 kill. The majority of the rebels were KIA allies, such as the NLA and the Arakan army.