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Myanmar’s military and an alliance of ethnic rebel groups agreed to a Chinese-brokered ceasefire this week, after more than two months of intense fighting in the country’s northeast that has posed a major challenge for the ruling junta following its coup nearly three years ago, the Independent reported.
The ceasefire agreement came after representatives of both sides held talks last week in the Chinese provincial capital of Kunming, located around 250 miles from the border with Myanmar.
Chinese officials said the two sides agreed to a temporary ceasefire that would see the army halt its aerial bombing and artillery shelling in Myanmar’s northern Shan state, near the Chinese border.
For its part, the rebel groups, known as the Three Brotherhood Alliance, will cease its offensive and seek to capture more towns and army bases.
Even so, the truce would not apply to fighting in other parts of Myanmar and is not expected to impact the fate of imprisoned civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi or other political prisoners detained by the junta.
The agreement comes as the military junta is facing strong resistance from armed ethnic groups across the country since it ousted Suu Kyi and her elected government in February 2021.
Since the coup, Myanmar has been embroiled in a bloody civil conflict that has seen the junta crushing the rebels with both arbitrary detention and brute force.
The Three Brotherhood Alliance – which comprises the Myanmar National Democratic Alliance army, the Ta’ang National Liberation Army and the Arakan Army – intensified its attacks on the military in late October, including the seizure of more than 250 military posts and five major border crossing points controlling crucial trade with China.
Last month, the army and the alliance reached a similar deal following Beijing-mediated talks, but fighting continued after neither side honored that ceasefire, wrote Nikkei Asia.