Akhas

   An ethnic nationality who live in Shan State, in the Keng Tung (Kengtung) region east of the Salween (Thanlwin) River. Known also as Kaw or Ekaw, they speak a Tibeto-Burman language and are also found in northern Thailand, Laos, and China's Yunnan Province, their place of origin. Living in settlements above 3,500 feet, they practice slash-and-burn agriculture on the hillsides, including cultivation of opium poppies. Most Akhas are animist, though some have been converted to Christianity by missionaries. Their lands were incorporated into the Northeastern Command of the Communist Party of Burma (CPB), but after the 1989 CPB mutiny, Akha contingents have served in the National Democratic Alliance ArmyEastern Shan State, a drug-financed armed group.

Historical Dictionary of Burma (Myanmar). . 2014.

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