ASEAN KEY DESTINATIONS
Myanmar rebel groups unite
Three of the groups had previously signed ceasefire accords with the junta, which faces renewed international criticism over the country's November 7 national election.
The alliance accord was made three days before the election at a meeting in Thailand, Gum Sang Nsang, a representative of the Kachin National Organization said following a meeting at the UN headquarters late Tuesday.
The Kachin National Organization is allied to the Kachin Independence Army (KIA), one of the signatories.
He said the others were the Karenni National Progressive Party (KNPP), the Karen National Union (KNU), the Mon New State Party (MNSP) and the Shan State Army-North (SSA-N). Together they could muster at least 30,000 fighters, he said.
The Kachin group, the MNSP and the Shan State Army had all signed ceasefires with the junta but had become disillusioned and rejected the outcome of the vote, said Gum Sang Nsang.
He warned that hostilities would increasingly be moved to urban areas. "The war will no longer be restricted to the jungle."
Gum Sang Nsang said the junta and ethnic rebel groups had both reinforced their troop numbers in disputed areas since the election.
The Myanmar government has battled ethnic rebels since the former Burma gained independence in 1948.
In border areas where civil war continues, rights groups have accused the junta of waging a brutal counter-insurgency campaign involving the rape, torture and murder of villagers whose homes are routinely destroyed.
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