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Myanmar peace hinges on powerful interests: Experts

Published on Apr 16, 2013 11:25 AM

YANGON (AFP) - Myanmar must negotiate a web of vested interests if it is to end conflict with rebels in its far north and bring a halt to civil wars that have wracked the country for decades, experts say.

Bloody unrest in Kachin State has displaced tens of thousands, killed an unknown number of fighters and civilians and undermined government reforms.

Recent ceasefire talks have included senior military and rebel figures, raising hopes that Myanmar's quasi-civilian regime could succeed in its quest to declare a countrywide peace.

But the region, rich in natural resources and of huge strategic interest to neighbouring China, is criss-crossed with conflicting interests that threaten to destabilise the peace efforts.

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