Friday, January 8, 2016

Burma-Myanmar: Army clashes with ethnic Buddhist Arakan Army rebels

Arakan Army troops on parade in Laiza, Kachin State, in April 2014. (Photo: Moe Myint / The Irrawaddy)

Myanmar’s army says it has fought skirmishes against a Buddhist insurgent group in impoverished Rakhine state, losing several soldiers to sniper attacks.

The military, known as the Tatmadaw, has clashed 15 times with Buddhist Arakan Army rebels since 28 December, when it “cleared the area, acting on intelligence that AA insurgents were preparing to invade”, the army-run Myawadi news agency said, according to the government-owned New Light of Myanmar.

“Several Tatmadaw personnel, including one commanding officer, were killed in sniper attacks. Many others were injured,” Myawadi said, adding that it had seized 1,250 rounds of bullets and 44 mines. It said the army also confiscated tents, rice and medicine.

The Arakan Army was founded in 2009 and, like many other insurgent groups among Myanmar’s complex ethnic divide, says it is fighting for self-determination. It is closely allied with the Kachin Independence Army (KIA), one of the largest ethnic militant groups.

Rakhine, in western Myanmar, is also home to persecuted Muslim Rohingya, a stateless people. The Arakan Army is formed of Buddhist fighters and clashed in April with the Tatmadaw.

The News:
http://www.theguardi … akhine-rebels-killed



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