Jury Chai– The NMSP will join with other ceasefire groups to participate in the coming political dialogue with the government, according to party sources.Nai Hong Sar, the General Secretary of the NMSP, said, “Waiting to have all the armed groups get ceasefire agreements (with the government) will take too long (for us). Therefore, even if other armed groups haven’t been included (in the political dialogue) yet, we’ll develop the political dialogue (with the government).”
He added the NMSP would like to be a mediator between the government and the ethnic armed groups who haven’t reached ceasefire agreements.
The Union Government and the NMSP agreed on February 25, that December, 2012, was the deadline to develop a political dialogue between the ceasefire groups and the Burmese government.
The NMSP demanded the government allow both ceasefire groups and other groups to participate in the political dialogue, however, the government would not accept the groups with no ceasefire agreements.
The NMSP agreed it would have a political dialogue with the government within 45 days after signing the ceasefire agreement.
On February 25, the NMSP and the Burma Peace Committee signed the ceasefire agreement at the Strand Hotel, in Moulmein, Mon State.
The NMSP reached its first ceasefire agreement with the military government in June 29, 1995, which collapsed on September 1, 2010, when it refused to transform its troops into the Border Guard Force (BGF).
Cooperating ethnic armed groups formed the United Nationalities Federal Council (UNFC) in February, 2011, of which the NMSP is a member.
The armed groups of the UNFC without ceasefires include the Kachin Independence Organization (KIO), Karenni National Progressive Party (KNPP), Arakan National Council (ANC) and the Pa-O National Liberation Organization (PNLO). They will also attempt to negotiate ceasefire agreements this month, according to Nai Hong Sar.
The armed groups who have ceasefire agreements with the incumbent Burmese government are the United Wa State Army (UWSA), Shan-State-based National Democratic Alliance Army (NDAA), the Restoration Council of Shan State (RCSS, the Shan State Army (SSA), the Democratic Karen Buddhist Army (DKBA), the Shan State Army – North (SSA-North) and the Shan State Progress Party (SSPP), the Chin National Front (CNF), the Karen National Union (KNU) and the New Mon State Party (NMSP).