the recent escalation of tensions in northern Myanmar – resulting from the military’s crackdown on illegal logging – once again brought Myanmar to the top of China’s list of foreign policy priorities.
Myanmar is the second-largest country in Southeast Asia. It became an independent nation in 1948, although the conflicts between the dominant Burman population and ethnic minority groups have persisted. Myanmar was under military dictatorship from 1962 to 2011, which led to major political crises and chronic economic failures. Following controversial general elections in 2010, a nominally civilian government was installed in 2011. Since then, Myanmar has improved its relations with the West.
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