Myanmar's coup brings war back to remote frontier

Troops scuttling around the steep hilltops of this remote mountain frontier haven't been seen for 25 years, but Myanmar's coup has brought war back to the remote Southeast Asian region.

And it’s sending a new generation of villagers in both Myanmar and Thailand running for their lives from bullets and bombs.

Including Amin, a villager from Mae Hong Son province in Thailand.

"I fled my house around 4:55 a.m. yesterday. The clash that happened was so loud and everyone was so scared. I brought my whole family to a safer spot and I came back to watch the situation."

From his vantage point he’s watching heavy clashes between Myanmar's oldest rebel force and its military.

An army border outpost crackles in the distance. Ethnic minority Karen insurgents with the Karen National Union (KNU) said they captured it the day before.

The group and other autonomy-seeking ethnic minority forces based in frontier regions are backing the largely city-based pro-democracy opponents of the junta that seized power on February 1st.

The Myanmar military has held this outpost since 1995, but new tensions are setting alight old rivalries.

The KNU agreed to a ceasefire in 2012, ending an insurgency that began soon after Myanmar gained independence in 1948.

Now war has returned the Myanmar military has greater might from the air.

It’s launched repeated air strikes against KNU positions sending some 15,000 villagers fleeing into the forest.

Several thousand briefly seeking refuge on the Thai side of the border.

Thailand says it's here to provide humanitarian help but it's staying out of the fight.