By KYAE GOE – The Mon National Democratic Front (MNDF) has welcomed the formation of the Federal Union Army by the United National Federal Council (UNFC).
“The Federal Union Army should have already been formed earlier, but it did not happen. It’s great that now it is formed,” said Nai Ngwe Thein, the joint chairman of the MNDF.
The MNDF commented on UNFC’s statement, after a meeting on May 14th, that “The Federal Union Army is being formed to build a Federal Union and to protect the lives of ethnic people.”
Nai Ngwe Thein explained, “Though ethnic groups in Burma have advocated to the UN Secretary General for peaceful transformation very often, but it did not turn into action.”
“If we have to fight for peaceful transformation, we must,” he added.
The MNDF was disbanded in 1992 after the party’s leaders were put into prison. The party won five seats as parliamentary representatives in the 1990 elections, when Burma’s pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi’s party, the National League for Democracy, won in a landslide.
Nai Hongsa, the secretary of the UNFC, as well as the general secretary of the New Mon State Party (NMSP), said, “We want to solve the political conflicts through dialogue between ethnics and the government as it will never end if we have to solve the conflicts with arms.
We will prepare ourselves to protect our people and their properties if the government does not accept solving the problems politically.”
“Every ethnic-armed group includes in the Federal Union Army will perform military offensive actions accordingly,” he added.
The Federal Union Army has formed with 12 ethnic armed groups, including the Kachin Independent Organization, Kachin National Organization, Karen National Union, NMSP, Karen National Progressive Party, Palaung State Liberation Front, Lahu Democratic Union, National Unity Party of Arakan, Shan State Progressive Party, PaOh National Liberation Organization, Wa National Organization, and Chin National Front.