An escalation in fighting between the Myanmar National Democratic Alliance Army and the Tatmadaw near the town of Mong Ko on the China border has emptied villages, while inflaming longstanding tensions over who controls the area.
Senior General Min Aung Hlaing has attracted ridicule for airing grand development plans at a time when the economy is in crisis, but even the regime’s more rational economic goals are unlikely to be achievable.
The military regime has struggled to achieve international recognition since taking control of Myanmar, and it said that only eight international delegations attended Saturday's event, including China and Russia.
A University of Oslo sociologist called the Civil Disobedience Movement an exemplary response to the military's power grab that could "inspire other non-violent pro-democracy movements elsewhere at a time when democracy is under pressure from authoritarian forces".
The Kayin State Border Guard Force has come under intense pressure from the Tatmadaw over its extensive, controversial business interests and there’s concern the ultimatum could trigger fresh hostilities in one of the country’s most war-torn areas.