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NMSP chairman urges heads of state, Tatmadaw to stop military offensives

The New Mon State Party (NMSP) chairman Nai Htaw Mon urged the heads of state and the Tatmadaw to stop the military offensives with magnanimity in order for all ethnic armed organizations(EAOs) to participate in the nationwide ceasefire agreement (NCA).

“They (the EAOs) have the desire to cooperate in this peace process even though they have doubts and concerns, which are based on ethnic history and experience. As they have truly suffered from the civil war and they are still suffering, they want to stop the war and have firm peace,” said the NMSP chairman.

New Mon State Party chairman Nai Htaw Mon speaking at NCA inking on February 13, 2018

The NMSP chairman gave the remarks during the NCA signing ceremony of the NMSP and the Lahu Democratic Union (LDU) held at MICC-2 in Naypyidaw on February 13.

“When it comes to peace, three methods are considered: ceasefire, development of ethnic area, and resolution through political means. Actually, all of the three approaches are correlated. That’s why we consider peace as having two facets: ending armed conflicts and building a federal union that has equality and self-determination,” Nai Htaw Mon said.

In her opening speech, State Counsellor and the National Reconciliation and Peace Center’s chair Daw Aung San Suu Kyi said federalism can build and sustain a united union that will last long and endure for our country and our people.

She also said that there is no such thing as a federal system which fits all countries in this world and we have to build according to the country, its history and, its society, as needed.

We have to design the federal system of the future Union collectively and through discussions and consultations, she continued.

“The time has come for all of us make concerted efforts for a federal system for establishment of a Union which our founding fathers yearned for; a Union with Justice, freedoms and equal rights, and untainted by political ideologies. Our country has borne the brunt for long; and the hopes of our people have dimmed and diminished for more than 70 years. That is why I wish to solemnly state hear that we should bring forth the NCA which is the prelude to National Unity,” she said.

State Counsellor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, the Tatmadaw Commander-in-Chief Senior General Min Aung Hlaing, and the NMSP chair Nai Htaw Mon delivered speeches during the ceremony.

President U Htin Kyaw, the State Counsellor, the Tatmadaw Commander-in-Chief, the heads of state, the NMSP chair Nai Htaw Mon and party leaders, and the LDU chair Kyar Khun Sar and leaders signed the NCA.

Leaders of ethnic armed organizations that have signed the NCA, Hluttaw MPs, Union Peace Dialogue Joint Committee (UPDJC) members, and foreign representatives from the U.S., China, India, and Thailand signed the agreement as witnesses.

Ten out of 20 ethnic armed organizations have signed the NCA now.

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