Aid workers called on February 19 for a ceasefire to allow the evacuation of people trapped around a town at the centre of fierce fighting between Myanmar's army and ethnic rebels, after the deaths of two more civilians in an area cloaked by a state of emergency.
The Myanmar government and Kokang rebels are trading accusations over the February 17 attack on a Red Cross convoy, one day after the government declared a state of emergency in the northern region, according to Voice of America on February 18.
The Myanmar Journalist Network on February 18 issued a statement urging government troops, who are taking responsibility to provide security in the Kokang area, to protect media personnel who have been covering the fighting in the area.
In what is said to be the first attack against the Myanmar Red Cross, two Red Cross volunteers were shot when a convoy carrying war refugees was attacked on February 17.
Myanmar’s president has vowed “not to lose an inch” of territory in clashes with ethnic rebels in a region bordering China, state-backed media said on February 17, after intense fighting sent tens of thousands fleeing across the frontier.
Nay Pyi Taw – The Pyidaungsu Hluttaw has condemned the actions of ‘Kokang renegades’ who attacked civilians, government troops and local security forces in the Laukkai area of Kokang in northern Shan State.
China warned of a threat to border stability after the dramatic upsurge in conflict in a remote region in Myanmar's northeastern state of Shan, reports said February 16.