Myanmar - Civil War

Rebel groups in Myanmar See summary

Recent articles:

foxnews.com Chinese military conducts training drill near Myanmar border 03/29
scmp.com Myanmar’s Rohingya Muslim militants deny terrorist links 03/29
mizzima.com State Counsellor discusses concerns in Kachin State 03/29
mizzima.com Myanmar stumbles on path to democracy under Aung San Suu Kyi 03/29
reuters.com A year on, regal Suu Kyi struggles to move Myanmar on from conflict 03/28
reuters.com China army drills on Myanmar border amid tensions 03/28
dnaindia.com China holds military exercises at Myanmar border amid tensions 03/28
foxnews.com Myanmar's armed Rohingya militants deny terrorist links 03/28
globalsecurity.org Chinese military stages drills near restive Myanmar border 03/28
nationmultimedia.com Myanmar army chief defends military campaign in Rakhine 03/27
mizzima.com Myanmar rebuffs UN probe of crimes against Rohingya 03/27
globalsecurity.org Myanmar army chief defies UN calls, defends crackdown on Rohingya 03/27
zeenews.india.com Myanmar rebuffs UN probe of rape, murder crimes against Rohingya Muslims 03/25
mizzima.com Thai Government to ask 70,000 refugees to go home 03/24
newmandala.org Religion continues to divide Myanmar 03/24
mizzima.com China vows to respect Myanmar’s sovereignty 03/23
reuters.com Myanmar praises China for suspending rebels' bank account 03/22
nationmultimedia.com Key issues on agenda as Prayut meets UNHCR 03/22
cnn.com UN: 'Crimes against humanity' could be unfolding in Myanmar 03/21
reuters.com Exclusive: China's AgBank suspends account being used to crowdfund Myanmar rebels 03/21
dnaindia.com FACTBOX - The MNDAA: Myanmar's crowdfunding ethnic insurgent group 03/21
cnn.com UN official: 'Crimes against humanity' may be unfolding in Myanmar 03/21
dnaindia.com WIDER IMAGE-Rohingya newborns offer frail hope in face of Myanmar violence 03/20
mizzima.com Bridge name makes troubled waters for Myanmar’s Suu Kyi 03/20
mizzima.com Protest held against government plan to give citizenship to some Rohingya 03/20
nzherald.co.nz Myanmar hard-line Buddhists protest citizenship for Rohingya 03/19
dnaindia.com Bridge name makes troubled waters for Myanmar's Suu Kyi 03/19
scmp.com Bridge name creates troubled waters for Myanmar’s Suu Kyi 03/19
globalsecurity.org Myanmar extremist Buddhists protest Rohingya citizenship plan 03/19
mizzima.com MNDAA base taken by Myanmar Army 03/17
dw.com EU calls for UN fact-finding mission to Myanmar to probe rights abuses 03/16
dnaindia.com Kofi Annan calls on Myanmar to allow access to troubled area 03/16
reuters.com Exclusive: Children among hundreds of Rohingya detained in Myanmar crackdown 03/16
voanews.com As Civilian Displacement Surges, Myanmar Limits Aid Access 03/15
mizzima.com KNU’s 16th Congress begins 03/15
aljazeera.com Persecution path: Following Myanmar's fleeing Rohingya 03/15
voanews.com China Meets with Myanmar's Ethnic Armies in Attempt to Quell Fighting 03/15
reuters.com Dozens of Myanmar soldiers killed in rebel clashes near China border 03/14
scmp.com Myanmar may be trying to ‘expel’ all Rohingya in latest purge, UN human rights expert says 03/14
nationmultimedia.com Myanmar may be trying to 'expel' all Rohingya: UN expert 03/13
timesofindia.indiatimes.com Balochis want UN probe on rights violations by Pak 03/13
reuters.com Refugees surge into China as Myanmar ethnic border conflict escalates 03/13
aljazeera.com UN: Myanmar 'may be trying to expel' all Rohingya 03/13
bbc.co.uk 'Crimes against humanity' in Myanmar - UN rapporteur 03/10
mizzima.com Deadly clashes in Kokang affects people from both Myanmar and China 03/10
bbc.co.uk Hounded and ridiculed for complaining of rape 03/10
globalsecurity.org Over 20,000 Myanmar refugees enter China amid fighting between army, rebels: Beijing 03/09
mizzima.com Clashes empty out Myanmar town on China border 03/09
reuters.com China says more than 20,000 from Myanmar seek refuge across border 03/09
scmp.com More than 20,000 flee Myanmar conflict and cross border to China 03/09
aljazeera.com Thousands flee to China to escape Myanmar violence 03/09
bbc.co.uk Myanmar violence: 20,000 people seek refuge in China 03/09
mizzima.com More than 20,000 Myanmar refugees enter China 03/09
mizzima.com Thousands flee Myanmar border town after rebel raid 03/08
dw.com Thousands cross from Myanmar to China amid border violence 03/08
reuters.com Myanmar set to dodge full U.N. probe on Rohingya abuse 03/08
reuters.com Thousands flee Myanmar army clashes with insurgents near China border, official says 03/08
nzherald.co.nz Myanmar military calls for ethnic rebels to join peace talks 03/07
in.reuters.com Ethnic group attacks Myanmar army near China border, 30 dead - government 03/06
scmp.com 30 dead as intense fighting breaks out in Myanmar-China border town 03/06
nzherald.co.nz Myanmar says ethnic rebels stage raid on northeastern town 03/06
nationmultimedia.com Myanmar army accuses rebels of deadly Kokang attack 03/06
aljazeera.com Deadly clashes hit Myanmar's border with China 03/06
mizzima.com UN envoy calls for highest level Myanmar probe 03/03
globalsecurity.org Into Myanmar's Stalled Peace Process Steps China 03/02
newmandala.org A turning point in the Rohingya crisis 03/02
mizzima.com Myanmar govt swats away ‘biased’ UN abuse claims 03/01
thejakartapost.com Myanmar human rights activist denied bail for second time 03/01
mizzima.com No ethnic armed organisation seeks political change through armed struggle - CNF 02/28
globalsecurity.org 160 have died in clashes between Myanmar military, ethnic armed groups 02/28
dnaindia.com Myanmar army defends operation against Rohingya Muslims, denies reports of abuses 02/28
dnaindia.com At least 160 killed in clashes on Myanmar-China border: army 02/28
stripes.com Myanmar army: Charges of abusing Rohingya unsubstantiated 02/28
dnaindia.com Senior Myanmar police jailed for negligence over Rohingya attacks 02/24
globalsecurity.org No peace with Myanmar government in sight, powerful rebel group warns 02/24
mizzima.com Non-ceasefire Ethnic Groups release statement on 21st Panglong Conference 02/23
nationmultimedia.com Myanmar's powerful Wa militia warns no peace in sight 02/23
mizzima.com Myanmar security forces probe Rohingya prison deaths 02/23
csmonitor.com As world's support ebbs, Myanmar refugees feel pushed back to unsafe homes 02/22
nationmultimedia.com Myanmar probes murder of 4 people in Rakhine 02/21
reuters.com Exclusive: Myanmar probing police 'cover-up' of deaths of two Rohingya Muslims 02/21
irinnews.org Humanitarian situation worsens in Myanmar despite Aung San Suu Kyi 02/21
dnaindia.com Rohingya activist says 1,000 refugees returned to Myanmar 02/20
reuters.com Myanmar soldiers injured in clash with militants in troubled Rakhine 02/19
scmp.com Hundreds of Rohingya who fled to Bangladesh to escape persecution in Myanmar have returned home 02/19
globalvoices.org Fleeing the Shells of War, Kachin Civilians Struggle Against Freezing Cold in North Myanmar 02/19
mizzima.com Myanmar army ends operations in north Rakhine: govt 02/17
reuters.com U.N. wants to negotiate with U.S., Canada to resettle Rohingya refugees 02/16
foxnews.com Myanmar says army ends operation in troubled Rakhine state 02/16
dw.com Myanmar military ends crackdown against Rohingya 02/16
nationmultimedia.com Ex-colonel allegedly plots murder of Myanmar lawyer 02/16
aaj.tv Malaysian aid ship for Rohingya arrives in Bangladesh 02/14
impunitywatch.com Global Centre for the Responsibility to Protect: Atrocity Alert: Myanmar, Syria and Central African Republic 02/13
nzherald.co.nz Suu Kyi urges Myanmar armed ethnic groups to sign cease-fire 02/12
mizzima.com Shan National Day held at Loi Tai Leng 02/11
aljazeera.com Week in Pictures : From Yemen air raids to Manila fire 02/10
news.com.au Horror the world isn’t watching 02/10
csmonitor.com Malaysian boat with aid for Rohingya arrives to protests in Myanmar 02/09
mizzima.com Bangladesh rebukes Myanmar for ‘unprovoked aggression’ 02/09
mizzima.com Anti-Rohingya protests greet Malaysia aid ship in Yangon 02/09

Summary

Myanmar (aka Burma) has been in a state of constant civil war since independence in 1948. Powerful elements within the Burman (or Bamar) ethnic group, who constitute about 60% of the population and 40% of the land mass, have felt that they should dominate the country’s social, economic, and political realms. However, Myanmar is one of the most ethnically diverse countries in the world with key non-Burman ethnic groups demanding equality with the Burmans in the three public realms, specifically the protection of ethnic culture, language, and religion, the devolution of tangible executive, legislative, and judicial power to the ethnic states within a true federal union, and a democratic form of government. With their demands unmet, the ethnic groups turned to armed insurgency. Despite many political and military alliances among them, they have been unable to use these alliances to best advantage because of cultural differences and diverse agendas.

The civil war and the perceived threat of secession by ethnic states from Myanmar led in 1962 to a military coup. Since then, the military has dominated the affairs of the country seeing itself as the sole force capable of holding the country together. The military’s dictum is “one country – one army.”

The major non-Burman ethnic groups are the Arakanese, Chin, Kachin, Shan, Karenni, Karen, and Mon, all of which have their own states in which they are the dominant ethnic group. All these states have ethnic insurgent activities of varying intensities against the Myanmar military (aka Tatmadaw). The Tatmadaw has been employing a “Four Cuts” counterinsurgency strategy which attempts to deny the ethnic insurgents access to food, funding, information, and recruits. Also the Myanmar regime policies have led to the impoverishment of and human rights abuses toward the ethnic peoples leading hundreds of thousands of them to seek safety in adjacent countries – Thailand, China, India, and Bangladesh, through resettlement in other countries, and as internally displaced persons in the jungle inside Myanmar.

The following are the current most active ethnic armed groups fighting against the Myanmar regime for ethnic rights, federalism, and democracy and to stop human rights abuses against their respective ethnic groups:
Arakan (aka Rahkine) State: Arakan Liberation Army (ALA) and the Arakan Army (AA).
Chin State: Chin National Army (CNA).
Kachin State: Kachin Independence Army (KIA)
Shan State: Kachin Independence Army (KIA), United Wa State Army (UWSA), National Democratic Alliance Army (NDAA Mongla), Shan State Army - South (SSA - S), Shan State Army - North (SSA - N), Wa National Army (WNA), Myanmar National Democratic Alliance Army (MNDAA), Lahu Democratic Front (LDF), Palaung State Liberation Front (PSLF), and the Pa’O Peoples Liberation Army (PPLA).
Karenni (aka Kayah) State: Karenni Army (KnA) and the Kayan New Land Party (KNLP).
Karen (aka Kayin) State: Karen National Defense Organization/Karen National Liberation Army (KNDO/KNLA) and the Democratic Karen Buddhist Army (DKBA).
Mon State: Mon National Liberation Army (MNLA).

Additionally in Arakan State, the Rohingya National Army (RNA), is fighting against the regime for religious rights and the recognition of the Rohingya people as an ethnic group with special geographic areas set aside in Arakan State for them to institute Islamic laws and practice their culture as Muslims. These aspirations are a source of conflict between them and the Arakan Buddhists who consider the Rohingya as migrant Bengali Muslims with no legitimate claim to ethnicity in Myanmar.