Signs are pointing toward a resumption of hostilities between Burma's ruling junta and the United Wa State Army, one of the largest armed ethnic groups to sign a cease-fire with Rangoon.
The Shan Herald Agency for News reported Tuesday that some elements of the junta are considering ending the cease-fire agreement, which was signed in 1989.
The agency said that hard-liners in the junta are hoping the move would project the image of Rangoon fighting an anti-drug war against narco-terrorist armies to distract international attention from the detention of democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi.
Thai military sources have confirmed the reports, saying leaders in Panghsan, the Wa capital, have held two emergency meetings in a month.
The Wa army has been accused of being a major producer and supplier of methamphetamines and heroin. The organization has denied the allegations.