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April 13, 2023, 04.14 PM

JAKARTA, - The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) "strongly condemns" recent air strikes in Myanmar in which dozens of people were reported killed, said a statement issued Thursday, April 13 by Indonesia, the current ASEAN chair.

"All forms of violence must end immediately, particularly the use of force against civilians", said the statement.

A statement from the ASEAN chair does not necessarily indicate the agreement of all member states.

The official death toll from Tuesday morning's strike on the remote Kanbalu township in Myanmar's central Sagaing region remains unclear, though at least 100 fatalities have been reported by the BBC, The Irrawaddy, and Radio Free Asia.

The junta confirmed Wednesday it had "launched limited air strikes" after receiving a tip-off from locals about an event marking the opening of a local defense force office connected to the military government's opponents.

Also readMyanmar Conflict Can End If Russia Stops Weapons Supply: US

The attack drew swift condemnation from the United Nations and Western powers, with UN rights chief Volker Turk saying he was "horrified" by the deadly strike.

One villager told AFP on Wednesday that it was difficult to identify the dead.

"We can not identify anymore who is who among the dead because they all became pieces," he said.

Indonesia - Southeast Asia's biggest economy - is serving as the 2023 chair of ASEAN and will host the 10-member bloc's annual leaders' meetings in May and September.

Source AFP

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