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Kachin-Yunnan Timber Trade Hampering Peace Process in Myanmar

Author: Rachel Vandenbrink, Radio Free Asia, Published on: 17 January 2014

Myanmar’s resource-rich Kachin state’s booming timber-led trade with China’s bordering Yunnan province is hindering the northern state’s peace process, already hampered by serious distrust between ethnic rebels and the military who have been fighting for decades, experts studying the conflict said…[P]rogress on ending the Kachin conflict is slowed by major political disagreement between the rebel Kachin Independence Organization (KIO) and the government, as well as by local groups with a vested interested in fueling the illicit timber trade, researchers said…Illegal loggers, many of them from China, sneak into the conflict zone and smuggle the timber across the border to Ruili in Yunnan, with the tacit agreement of local Kachin leaders and Myanmar military officers…

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