An alliance of ethnic armed groups that has been fighting the Myanmar military in the northeast and west of the country has extended its unilateral ceasefire until the end of this year, it said in a statement on Friday.
The alliance comprises the Myanmar National Democratic Alliance Army (MNDAA), the Ta’ang National Liberation Army (TNLA) and the Arakan Army (AA).
The move came one day ahead of the expiration of the Myanmar military’s own truce on Sept. 21. Observers described the armed groups’ ceasefire extension as a shrewd political move.
The groups “gain a political advantage by announcing the ceasefire,” said U Maung Maung Soe, an ethnic affairs analyst. “While we can’t say for sure whether the fighting will totally stop, the military tensions in Rakhine and northern Shan states are easing,” he said.