High-level peace talks moved to Nay Pyi Taw
A peace meeting between the country’s top leaders and the 10 armed ethnic groups that have signed the Nationwide Ceasefire Agreement has been moved to Nay Pyi Taw.
A High-level peace meeting scheduled for Monday next week at Mandalay’s Mount Popa has been moved to Nay Pyi Taw at the request of the leaders of the armed ethnic groups, a senior government official said on Thursday.
The meeting will be attended by State Counsellor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, Commander-in-chief of Defence Services Senior General Min Aung Hlaing and key leaders of the 10 armed ethnic groups that have signed the Nationwide Ceasefire Agreement (NCA).
The meeting was aimed at ironing out issues that have stalled the peace process.
“The armed ethnic groups asked us to hold the meeting in Nay Pyi Taw,” said U Hla Maung Shwe, an adviser of the government’s peace commission.
The Peace Process Steering Team (PPST), which comprises the leaders of the 10 groups, concluded a two-day meeting in Chiang Mai, Thailand, on Thursday, with the aim of coming up with a common stand on thorny issues besetting the peace process.
The groups’ leaders agreed to seek a solution to the deadlock that is delaying negotiations in the peace process, the PPST said in a statement on Thursday. It did not give further details.
The meeting between the country’s civilian and military leaders with the groups is expected to last five days.
Among the matters to be discussed is the Rakhine issue. There will also be bilateral or group meetings between the State Counsellor, Sen Gen Min Aung Hlaing and the groups’ leaders.
Political analysts said resolving the issue about the right of states and regions to draft their own constitutions would play a crucial role in moving the peace process forward.
The 10 armed ethnic groups want their states to be allowed to draft their own constitutions as part of a federal union.
So far, representatives of the government, military and the groups have failed to agree on that right as well as on guarantees against secession from Myanmar.
The disagreement centres on a provision that the charters cannot supersede any laws in Myanmar’s constitution.
State Counsellor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi (centre) at the 3rd session of the 21st Century Panglong Conference in Nay Pyi Taw in July.