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1st US search since 2004 for MIAs in Myanmar ends

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March 19, 2013 08:44 AM EST | AP

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YANGON, Myanmar — A U.S. government team searching for bodies of American military personnel missing in action from past wars has finished its first mission in Myanmar since 2004.

The U.S. Embassy said Tuesday that a nine-person team from the U.S. Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command confirmed some previous leads and developed new ones on the fate of Americans unaccounted for in fighting against the Japanese in World War II. It said research and fieldwork was done from Feb. 21 to March 15 in three areas, including Yangon, Myanmar's biggest city.

The searches had been suspended because of Washington's chilly relations with Myanmar's former military regime. They resumed as a result of warmer ties after an elected civilian government took power in 2011 and initiated democratic reforms.