Burma’s government praised China on Wednesday for suspending a Chinese bank account used by ethnic rebels fighting Burmese troops, in a move to prevent potential damage to diplomatic ties.
One of China’s biggest state-owned lenders has suspended an account used to fund ethnic rebels fighting government troops in Burma, halting an arrangement that could have stoked diplomatic tensions between Beijing and Naypyidaw.
Dozens of Burmese soldiers have been killed in several clashes between ethnic rebels and the army in Kokang along the border with China, state media reports.
China’s Foreign Ministry said on Thursday more than 20,000 people from Burma are seeking refuge in China from fighting in northern Shan State, as fighting threatens Burmese leader Aung San Suu Kyi’s top goal of reaching peace with minorities.
China on Tuesday called for an immediate ceasefire between ethnic rebels and Burmese security forces in the restive border area of Kokang, urging the two sides to resolve their differences through peaceful means instead.
“Arakanese people would never join such a demonstration. It is damaging to ethnic unity and we denounce it,” said a senior monk.