Thousands flee strategic border town as control of vital trade hubs becomes focus of war in Shan State

The fall of yet another border gate to the Brotherhood Alliance is just the latest sign of the junta’s weak hold over a region that is essential to Myanmar’s struggling economy

One month into a major military offensive launched by ethnic armed groups against the Myanmar junta, both sides are now heavily concentrating their efforts on control of key border towns and transport routes in the country’s northeast near China.

The border towns of Laukkai, Chin Shwe Haw and Muse in northeastern Shan State are all vital to trade between Myanmar and China, which was worth about two billion dollars in the first half of the current financial year alone.

Since the Brotherhood Alliance—the Myanmar National Democratic Alliance Army (MNDAA), the Ta’ang National Liberation Army (TNLA), and the Arakan Army—began Operation 1027 on October 27, its forces have seized control of Chin Shwe Haw and encircled. . .

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