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UNA and NLD Meet for Talks

Reported by: The National League for Democracy (NLD) and the United Nationalities Alliance (UNA), an alliance of ethnic political parties met to discuss three points on 18th January in Naypyidaw.

The three points they discussed were: how they could encourage meaningful political dialogue; how to amend the constitution or redraw a new one; and how to ensure that if elections are held in 2015 they are free and fair.

Min Pe Than the office head of the UNA said to IMNA: “After our leaders meet up again to discuss the details of these three points we will make a statement.”

Eight central executive committee members of the NLD led by Daw Aung San Suu Kyii and five leaders from the UNA met at Daw Aung San Suu Kyii’s house, Rose dwelling, in Naypyidaw.

Those attending from the NLD were: Daw Aung San Su Kyi, U Tun Tun Hein, Daw Nan Khin Htwe Myint, Daw Khin Htay Kywel, U Man Joney and U Win Oo. Those attending from the UNA were: Sai Nyunt Lwin the Secretary of the Working Committee, Dr. Min Soe Lin, Puijing KamLilang, Man Kyaw Nyein, and office head Min Pe Than.

Dr, Min Soe Lin the general secretary of Mon National Party said: “All the issues we discussed [at the meeting between the NLD and the UNA] will be discussed at a [future] UNA meeting and the NLD will also discuss them [amongst themselves]. Both sides’ working committees will then make compromises.”

The UNA held a conference in the last week of 2014 and decided on goals they would try to achieve. These included: the formation of a federal union; peace throughout the country as soon as possible; the signing of a nationwide ceasefire between the government and armed groups; to start political dialogue as soon as possible; and to meet with the NLD.

Before the 1990 elections the UNA consisted of 12 ethnic party members, all of whom contested the 1990 election. Some of those parties were abolished by the military government following the 1990 elections and some closed down.

Now the UNA has seven members. They are: the Shan National League for Democracy (SNLD), the Mon National Party (MNP), the Rakhine National Party (RNP), the Shan State Kokant Democratic Party (SSKDP), the Kayan National Party, the Kayin National Party and the Kachin National Democratic Network.

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