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.
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The recent spike in fighting in the north of the country appears to have dashed hopes that State Counsellor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi’s leadership could bring all ethnic armed groups into the Nationwide Ceasefire Agreement. China has expressed growing concern about the violence near its border and increased its support for Myanmar’s peace process, hosting a number of high-profile meetings.