Potential Hot Spots: May 24, 2001


The United Wa State Army, an ethnic militia force in Burma (Myanmar) which is allied to the Rangoon government, has recently obtained a stock of Chinese-made shoulder-fired HN-5N anti-aircraft missiles. The UWSA had previously used old Russian-made SA-7 Grails bought on the black market in Cambodia. The UWSA finances its operations by running about 50 laboratories which produce methamphetamines for the illegal recreational drug market in Thailand. The UWSA has about 20,000 armed troops, but has recently increased the number of these along the Thai border from 3,500 to 8,000.--Stephen V Cole


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