YANGON, Jan. 23 (Xinhua) -- Small armed clashes have occurred between the government troops and the Kachin Independence Army (KIA), leaving one dead in the border town of Muse, Myanmar's northern Shan state, Myanmar News Agency reported Monday.

The KIA attacked the government troops from about six kilometers east of Mawtaung village in the township Sunday when the latter were conducting area clearance operation.

The government troops returned fire to the armed group which withdrew to south-west direction.

The government troops claimed one KIA body with the seizure of some guns, cartridges, bullets, mortar rounds and grenades.

In late last December, Myanmar government troops seized an outpost, Point-768, of the KIA and surrounding minor camps.

The outpost, called by KIA as Lai Hpawng, lies on communication route to KIA headquarters -- Liza.

Earlier of the month, Myanmar government troops had also occupied Gidon Outpost, a KIA stronghold in Waingmaw, in its attack with artillery power.

Military conflicts erupted in border area of northern Myanmar's Shan state on Nov. 20 last year after an alliance of three armed groups launched attacks on government's military outposts and police stations in Muse and Kutkai towns as well as a border trade zone.

Sporadic clashes between the government troops and the three armed groups -- Kachin Independence Army (KIA) , Ta'ang National Liberation Army (TNLA) , Kokang's Myanmar National Democratic Alliance Army (MNDAA), continued up to date.