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Fire in Shan Gem Town Wa - Junta Co

Subject: Fire in Shan Gem Town Wa - Junta Conflict led To The Blaze: 

8 May 1999 <br>
<b>Fire in Shan Gem Town Wa - Junta Conflict Led To The Blaze: <br>
</b>Thousands of houses and shops were destroyed in a fire which erupted
late last March in the booming Shan gem town of Monghsu, according to
sources coming to the border. <br>
On 30 March, the Maniyadana Gem Market in Monghsu, Southern Shan State,
burst into flame which consumed &quot;not less than a thousand
buildings&quot;, according to eye witnesses. <br>
The fire was reported to have started at a discotheque operated by an
officer from the United Wa State Army. According to the sources, both the
Burmese and the Wa soldiers have been accusing each other of starting the
fire. <br>
Although few were sure how the blaze started, most of them were certain
it began with the growing tension between the SPDC and the UWSA. <br>
In February, a dispute arose between the two sides, when the Was stopped
an SPDC convoy and released their officers who were arrested easier by
the Burmese Army. It resulted in the ransacking of the Wa community in
Monghsu and forced relocation of several Wa families back into Wa
territory across the Salween. (Monghsu is on the western side and the Wa
Territory is on the eastern side). <br>
&quot;So it could have been either one&quot;, said one source. &quot;Only
time will tell which was the real culprit&quot;. <br>
Shans had joined Burma in 1947 under the treaty called Panglong Agreement
which guaranteed Full Autonomy, Human Rights and Democracy for them. They
have been fighting against successive Rangoon governments since the terms
of agreement were violated. Their main party is the Shan Nationalities
League for Democracy that won the General Elections in the Shan State in
1990 and their central armed movement is the Shan States Army. <br>
/// END \\\ <br>
For further information, please contact S.H.A.N. at: <br>
Shan Herald Agency for News. <br>
P.O. Box. 15 <br>
Nonghoi P.O., 50007 <br>
Chiangmai <br>
Thailand <br>
Ph/Fax: (053) 807 121<br>
e-mail: &lt;shan@xxxxxxxxxxxx&gt; <br>