1. According to paragraph 20 (1) of the Nationwide Ceasefire Agreement (NCA), the Ethnic Armed Organizations (EAOs) shall be allowed to join the Union Peace Conference only after signing of the NCA. Signing of the NCA by any EAO is a must before joining the Union Peace Conference (UPC). The NCA does not have any exception clause saying, ‘EAOs can be invited as special guests, even those which have not yet signed the NCA.’
2. The invitation of the seven ethnic armed groups – informally dubbed the Panghsang Allies, led by the UWSP – by the NLD government and the Myanmar military rulers is a total contradiction of this core provision of the NCA. As such, the government and the Myanmar military rulers are obliged to formally and officially declare that the NCA has already been dissolved and the peace seeking process will be conducted independently without being bound by any prior agreement. If not, it implies that they are ignoring the rule of law by doing whatever they want without regard to core provisions of the NCA, which they have adopted formally, whenever they want.
3. In regard to the three ethnic armed organizations – the Ta’ang National Liberation Army, Arakan Army and the Myanmar National Democratic Alliance Army– the policy of the Myanmar military rulers led by Min Aung Hlaing, the Commander in Chief of the Myanmar Armed Forces, was that these three groups would be allowed to attend the Union Peace Conference (UPC) after taking two steps: one was to officially declare that they would renounce their policy of armed struggle; and another was to sign the NCA. Now, this has not been put into practice. Without needing to comply with any prior conditions, these three groups have already been invited to join the UPC. As such, the Myanmar military leaders are obliged to formally and officially declare that their former policy has already been given up, and that they will welcome all EAOs – including the UNFC members – for political dialogue, but not simply for watching the event – without practicing any discrimination between them.
4. The government authorities and the Myanmar military leaders are also obliged to allow all EAOs including Panghsang Allies – comprising seven ethnic armed groups, led by the UWSP – to freely take part in political dialogue during the process of the UPC. If not, it would imply that their invitation to the latter is simply a fraudulent pretence, intended to facilitate the legitimacy of the Conference but not to seek genuine peace.
5. In furtherance of this UPC – also known as the 21st Century Pang Long Conference – the NLD government and the Myanmar military leaders shall formally and legally recognize the Pang Long Accord, executed on February 12, 1947, as the most important Nation Building agreement, particularly the two paragraphs which guarantee full autonomy for internal affairs of the frontier areas, in terms of ethnic states, and which also enshrine democratic rights – already recognized in democratic countries – of the ethnic nationalities inhabiting in those frontier areas. Only when implementation of that Accord is ensured on the ground, this Conference may be legitimate.
For more information, please contact:
Mr. Aung Htoo (Human Rights Lawyer & Founder of the LAN)
(Tel) (66) (0) 327 45 713 E.mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Download this statement in English HERE.
ထုတ္ျပန္ေၾကညာခ်က္ ျမန္မာဘာသာကုိ ဤေနရာတြင္ ရယူႏုိင္သည္။