Nine policemen from Myanmar security forces were killed during what believed to be a coordinated attack on the country’s three guard posts along the border near Maungdaw, the state of Rakhine on Sunday.
In the 1.30am (local time) incident, four other policemen were injured and one missing and in addition, 8 gunmen were killed in counter attack, Police General Zaw Win told reporters at a press conference in Hanoi.
In the attack, the assailants looted more than 50 guns and thousands of bullets from the guard posts, he said.
Zaw Win claimed the attackers came from the Rohingya Solidarity Organisation (RSO), a small armed group which operated in 1980-1990 and remained silent over nearly 20 years.
Communal violence in Rakhine state in 2012 left scores dead and displaced more than 100,000.
Rakhine has seen simmering tension between its Buddhist and Rohingya Muslim populations.
Although the RSO has been blamed by the government for other attacks in recent years, some observers believe they have been dormant for some time.
Former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan is heading an advisory commission looking into sectarian divisions in Rakhine state.
Buddhist nationalists in Myanmar see the country’s estimated one-million Rohingya as Bangladeshi intruders, despite many having lived in the country for generations which the government of Myanmar-previously known as Burma refuses to grant them citizenship.