China announces a "ceasefire" between Myanmar authorities and armed groups China announces a "ceasefire" between Myanmar authorities and armed groups

China announces a "ceasefire" between Myanmar authorities and armed groups

China announces a "ceasefire" between Myanmar authorities and armed groups

China announced on Friday that it had facilitated an "immediate ceasefire" between the ruling military group in Myanmar and an alliance of armed ethnic groups in the north of the country.

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Mao Ning said, “The two parties agreed to an immediate ceasefire and resolve differences and demands through peaceful negotiations,” explaining that the talks took place “brokered and facilitated by the Chinese side” in the city of Kunming, the capital of Yunnan Province, which is approximately 400 kilometers away. On the borders of Myanmar.

Myanmar has been ravaged by violence that broke out after the military overthrew the elected government of Aung San Suu Kyi in February 2021.

An alliance of three armed groups launched an attack against the army in October and took control of Laokaing, a major border city in Myanmar's Shan State, last week.

China is concerned about the escalation of violence and the safety of its citizens in northern Myanmar, where border trade between the two countries is active.

China has also launched campaigns against online scams that have led to Chinese workers being smuggled into Myanmar and forced to work, including in the city of Laokaeng.

Mao said that the army and what is known as the Three Brotherhood Alliance - which includes the National Democratic Alliance Army in Myanmar, the Tha Ang National Liberation Army, and the Arakan Army - agreed to an immediate ceasefire, disengage the military and settle their differences through negotiations.

"Both sides pledged not to undermine the safety of Chinese people living in the border area, Chinese projects and Chinese citizens in Myanmar," she added.

The two parties did not adhere to the previously announced ceasefire agreement.

Myanmar military junta spokesman Zaw Min Tun confirmed, "With China's help, a meeting was held in Kunming... and we reached a ceasefire agreement."

For his part, Tar Bhun Kyaw of the Ta Ang National Liberation Army said that they "agreed to reopen border trade" with China.


Japan: We intend to monitor Putin's promise to visit the Kuril Islands

Japan: We intend to monitor Putin's promise to visit the Kuril Islands

Japanese Government Secretary General Yoshimasa Hayashi said on Friday that Tokyo will closely monitor the situation regarding Russian President Vladimir Putin's intention to visit the Kuril Islands.

This statement comes after Putin pledged, during a meeting with businessmen in the Russian Far Eastern Federal District on Thursday, to visit the Kuril Islands.

"We know that President Putin, during his visit to Khabarovsk on January 11, said that he would definitely visit the so-called Kuril Islands. We cannot comment on the statements of representatives of the Russian government. The government will continue to closely monitor developments in the situation and will act appropriately," Hayashi said.

The official stressed that Japan will continue its sanctions policy towards Russia and provide assistance to Ukraine.

Since the middle of the last century, Moscow and Tokyo have been negotiating to sign a peace treaty after World War II. The main obstacle to this remains the dispute over ownership of the southern part of the Kuril Islands.

Moscow has repeatedly affirmed its position that the islands became part of the Soviet Union after World War II, and Russia's sovereignty over them is not in question.
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