Troubled by the use of air power against Kachin in Myanmar: US

Following the conflict between Myanmar and Kachin rebels, US expressed its concern for the use of air power in Kachin State and pressed the government to cease conflict and enter into a dialogue to address grievances of the people.

"We are troubled by the use of air power. We were not in a position to confirm it until the government confirmed it itself, and it's extremely troubling," the State Department spokesperson, Victoria Nuland told reporters yesterday at her daily news conference.

"We are just today getting confirmation that this has happened. I am sure that we will be formally expressing our concern about that kind of weaponry," she said in response to a question.

We are continuing to urge the Government of Burma and the Kachin Independence Organization to cease this conflict, to get to a real dialogue to address grievances as the Government of Burma has been able to do in virtually all of the other conflict areas," Nuland said.

"This is one of the last ones in addition to Rakhine State where we're still seeing difficulties. We have consistently raised our concerns about violence in Burma's ethnic minority areas. So it's very concerning obviously that these weapons are in use, and we will continue our discussion with the government about it," she said.

US Ambassador to Myanmar Derek Mitchell was up in Kachin State trying to talk to the various stakeholders about a month ago, she said.

"That was before this most recent uptick in violence, so he will continue to press the case," Nuland said.

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