|Girish Shetti |||Nov 21, 2016 08:08 AM EST|
(Photo : Getty Images) China's Defense Ministry has put its army on high alert following the ethic violence in the border towns of China and Myanmar.
China has put its army on high alert after fighting broke out in Myanmar's town of Muse and Kutkai last weekend. Both of these towns are located near China's border areas and are known to be prone to insurgent activities.
According to state media Xinhua news agency, three armed groups simultaneously ambushed several security posts located on border towns earlier on Sunday. Both of these towns are located in Myanmar's north-eastern Shan state.
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There are conflicting reports about civilian and military causalities. Agence France-Presse, an international news agency, reported that two Myanmar civilians were found dead, and at least 25 others were injured. Reports from Chinese state media outlet, on the other hand, revealed that there have been severe causalities without giving any further details.
China's Defense Ministry issued a statement on its official website following the violence in border areas.
"The Chinese army is on high alert and will take the necessary measures to safeguard the country's sovereignty and safety, as well as protect the lives and property of Chinese citizens living along the border," Defense Ministry said in a statement.
The Chinese embassy in Burma has also immediately issued a statement on its official website calling for an immediate ceasefire on Sunday and hoping that stability resumes in the border areas.
The Chinese government has temporarily given shelter to an undisclosed number of Myanmar citizens who crossed over to China to avoid injury during the fighting, the statement said.
The border state of Shan has been plagued by decades of insurgent activities, leaving thousands displaced and an equal number of people dead as well as injured.
Last year, five Chinese civilians were killed after fighting spilled over into Chinese territory. The incident had left leaders in Beijing immensely furious.
The ethnic group's insurgent activities in border areas were apparently one of the talking points during Aung San Suu Kyi's historic visit to China earlier this year. The sensitive issue assumed a lot of importance, as Beijing wields considerable influence over ethnic groups settling near border areas.
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