Shan State Army (SSPP)

(Redirected from Shan State Army - North)

The Shan State Army (Burmese: ရှမ်းပြည်တပ်မတော် - မြောက်ပိုင်း; abbreviated SSA or SSPP/SSA), also known as Shan State Army – North (SSA-N)[a] or Shan State Army/Special Region 3 (SSA/SR-3) is a Shan nationalist insurgent group in Myanmar (Burma). It is the armed wing of the Shan State Progress Party (SSPP).[4]

Shan State Army (SSPP)
ပႃႇတီႇမႂ်ႇသုင်ၸိုင်ႈတႆး – တပ်ႉသိုၵ်းၸိုင်ႈတႆး
Dates of operation1971 (1971)–present
Group(s)Shan State Progress Party
HeadquartersWan Hai, Kehsi Township, Shan State
Active regionsShan State, Myanmar
IdeologyShan nationalism
Allies Communist Party of Burma (1971–1991)
Karenni Nationalities Defence Force (2024–present)
Pa-O National Liberation Army (2024–present)
Ta'ang National Liberation Army[2]
OpponentsState opponents:

Non-state opponents:

Battles and warsInternal conflict in Myanmar



The Shan State Army was founded on 24 April 1964 and the Shan State Progress Party was founded in 1971 as the political wing of the SSA. In 1989, the SSPP signed a ceasefire in 1989 after negotiations with the State Peace and Development Council and was able to obtain a degree of autonomy for the areas under its control, establishing the Special Region 3 of the Shan State. This area included Nam Kham, Langkho, Hsipaw, Kyauk Mae, Mong Hsu, Tang Yang, Mongyai, Kehsi and Lashio Township. The size of the armed group at that time was of about 4.000 fighters. Even after having signed a ceasefire, the Burmese military continued to attack the Shan State Army (SSPP) areas.[5]

Although the SSPP/SSA is more conciliatory towards the government than other armed Shan separatist groups, in 2005 it abandoned its base rather than disarm.[6] At one point the Burmese government wished the Shan State Army (SSPP) to join its border guard force. Two of the three brigades reportedly agreed to join the border guard, while the other refused.

Renewed hostilities


In 2014 the group has clashed with the Burmese army in Kehsi Mansam Township, home to the SSPP/SSA Wanhai headquarters.[7]

Beginning on 6 October 2015 a large scale offensive by the Tatmadaw comprising 20 Burma Army battalions has been launched in central Shan State. The aim of the military is to seize Shan ceasefire territories in Kehsi, Mong Nawng, Mong Hsu and Tangyan townships, using heavy artillery and with fighter jet and helicopter gunship air support to indiscriminately shell and bomb civilian areas. These attacks have displaced thousands of Shan, Palaung, Lisu and Lahu people causing a new humanitarian crisis.[8][9]

2021–2024 Myanmar Civil War


On 30 November 2023, SSPP/SSA declared a truce with Shan State Army (RCSS), with the SSPP/SSA stating that they intended to unite in the future.[3]

On 3 May, the Vice-Chairperson of the Shan State Progress Party announced that it and it's armed forces, the Shan State Army, would join revolutionary forces, and that a political solution to the conflict was "impossible". Later, on 5 May, the vice-chairperson retracted his statement, stating the decision to declare war on the junta was not made.[10]



The SSPP/SSA originally had three brigades: the 1st, 3rd, and 7th brigades,[11] but two brigades, the 3rd and 7th, surrendered in 2009.

See also



  1. ^ To distinguish it from the Shan State Army (RCSS) (SSA - South)


  1. ^ "Myanmar Peace Monitor". 10 January 2013. Archived from the original on 8 May 2019. Retrieved 12 December 2015.
  2. ^ Finney, Richard; Mar, Khet (2 August 2018). "300 Myanmar Villagers Flee Township as Ethnic Armies Approach". Radio Free Asia. Archived from the original on 3 August 2018. Retrieved 3 August 2018.
  3. ^ a b "Rival Shan armies declare truce as other ethnic armed groups gain ground". Myanmar Now. 30 November 2023.
  4. ^ Shan State Progress Party/ Shan State Army Archived 12 August 2015 at the Wayback Machine(ပႃႇတီႇမႂ်ႇသုင်ၸိုင်ႈတႆး/ တပ်ႉသိုၵ်းၸိုင်ႈတႆး ပွတ်းႁွင်ႇ)
  5. ^ "Elusive Nationwide Ceasefire Agreement Continues to Distract from Substantial Peace Talks". Archived from the original on 9 May 2015. Retrieved 12 September 2014.
  6. ^ "Uncertainty Reigns in Shan State". Archived from the original on 12 September 2014. Retrieved 12 September 2014.
  7. ^ "Shan State Army – North and govt discuss troop clashes". Archived from the original on 12 September 2014. Retrieved 12 September 2014.
  8. ^ Govt invasion of Shan state mocks ceasefire pact- Bangkok Post
  9. ^ "Attacks in central Shan State". Archived from the original on 28 April 2016. Retrieved 28 November 2015.
  10. ^ "SSPP NOT ENTERING CIVIL WAR FRAY: Saber-rattling or lost in translation". Shan Herald Agency for News. 6 May 2024.
  11. ^ Shan Herald Archived 4 December 2014 at the Wayback Machine