Gov’t, ethnic armed groups open latest ceasefire talks, agree on 4 amendments

MPCYangon, 22 July — The government’s Union Peace-Making Work Committee and a senior delegation of ethnic armed organizations opened negotiations Wednesday in Yangon to finalize a draft national ceasefire accord, reaching agreement on four proposed amendments to the prospective treaty.
The meeting follows three rounds of informal talks in Chiang Mai, Thailand, during which the two sides managed to clear roadblocks to the resumption of truce negotiations.
In a press conference at the Myanmar Peace Center, spokespersons of both sides said four of 13 amendments to the draft NCA proposed by the ethnic side were finalized on the first day of talks, leaving two points pending for discussion on Thursday.
Pu Zing Cung, a deputy leader of the ethnic delegation, said it was “early to say” whether the NCA signing would take place before the 8 November general election.
“But we are hopeful of a final deal, and so we are here to see how far we can go,” he said.
A draft nationwide ceasefire accord between the two sides has remained unsigned since the ethnic side’s unexpected rejection of the draft deal in June at the Law Khee Lar summit involving all of Myanmar’s ethnic armed groups.
U Hla Maung Shwe, senior adviser at Myanmar Peace Center, said the government side aimed to finalize the draft deal during the current talks “to ensure the signing of the official NCA” as soon as possible.
According to the meeting’s agenda, both sides agreed to negotiate the amendments proposed by the ethnic side and discuss who the NCA signatories and international witnesses should be, as well as the number of ethnic armed groups to ink the ceasefire deal, the senior adviser added.
The inclusion of all ethnic armed groups in the signing process, a major point of contention between the two sides, will be discussed on the second day of the meeting.
At the press conference, the government side reiterated its willingness to sign the draft NCA with the 15 ethnic armed groups with which it has already reached bilateral agreements.
The ethnic side, however, insisted that the ceasefire must be signed by all ethnic armed groups, including the 16 members of the Nationwide Ceasefire Coordination Team.  GNLM

Share this post
Tags :
Hot News
Hot News