Fifty-five ethnic armed groups to attend summit in Kachin State


A TOTAL of 55 invited ethnic armed groups will attend a summit of ethnic armed organisations (EAOs) to be held in the northern Kachin State town of Maijayan, according to U Saw Than Myint, secretary of the Shan Nationalities Democratic Party.
The summit will be held between 26-29 July, while U Saw Than Myint says efforts will be made to allow for the primary focal point of talks be held over federal policies.
“The results of this summit will be discussed during the conference of ethnic parties. The main thing is to know the stance of those EAOs which have yet to sign the Nation-wide Ceasefire Agreement (NCA). Ethnic groups have armed themselves because they haven’t yet secured a federal system which they desire. There’s no disagreements on that issue.” said the secretary.
Preparations are reportedly being made for those EAOs, which are yet to sign the NCA, to attend the summit, while the main topic for discussion will reportedly concern the installment of a federal system in Myanmar.
“We will attend the summit and have finished making our necessary preparations. It will be a very important summit for ethnic armed groups.” said U Khine Thu Wai, information official of the Arakan Army (AA).
U Hla Maung Shwe, secretary of the preparation committee for the 21st-Century Paglong Conference, announced in Naypyidaw that prior to the summit, to be held within the territory of the Kachin Independence Army (KIA),State Counsellor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, will convene a meeting with leaders of the United Nationalities Federal Council (UNFC) during mid-July.
“The NLD has not said it will not allow for a federal system. Consultations must be made with ethnic groups as to in what manner a federal system would be employed in Myanmar. As the NLD is the incumbent government, it will make ways to ensure the country can be governed through a federal system.” said U Htun Htun Hein, chair of the Pyithu Hluttaw Bill
Daw Aung San Suu Kyi addressed the public during her campaign trail in Kachin State capital of Myitkyina on 2 October 2015, in the run up to the general election, that the objective of the National League for Democracy (NLD), should it be voted into government office, would be to ensure the country be governed through a federal system in the manner of the Panglong agreement.

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