JMC needs to step up its work to help reduce clashes between Tatmadaw and RCSS

Writer: 
EMG reporter
The Joint Monitoring Committee (JMC) is required to step up its capacity for enabling Tatmadaw (defence services) and Restoration Council of Shan State (RCSS) to end armed conflicts between them, said Dr Min Zaw Oo, an executive director of Myanmar Institute for Peace and Security (MISP).
 
Tatmadaw, the RCSS, the Shan State Progressive Party (SSPP) and the Ta,ang National Liberation Army (TNLA) were involved in ongoing armed conflicts in northern Shan State. No dialogues mean no peace. If the situation keeps on going like so, there will be more clashes, said Dr Min Zaw Oo.
 
 The crisis in southern Shan State is not as big as that in northern Shan State. The northern Shan State is more likely. This is because the problem is located there. We need more bilateral meetings. Tatmadaw and the RCSS should hold more bilateral meetings. The RCSS is a signatory to the NCA. For that reason, Tatmadaw and the RCSS should step up JMC process, said Dr Min Zaw Oo.
 
The data of Township-based Conflict Monitoring System Database showed that armed incidents broke out for 17 times in June and 29 times in July during 2018. 
 
Armed incidents broke out in 11 townships in June, in 14 townships in July in 2018 and therefore armed conflict area made wider. The townships suffering the most severe armed conflict during July in 2018 are Hpakant in Kachin State and Mongkai in Shan State. These two townships faced at least a five-time clash, according to the MIPS.
 
“There has been a mounting military tension between Tatmadaw and the RCSS since June. More clashes occurred. If the situation keeps on going like so, there will be more clashes between Tatmadaw and the RCSS. Military tension will be likely to rise,” said Dr Min Zaw Oo.
 
The clashes continuously broke out between the RCSS and the combined group of the SSPP and the TNLA in Namtu, the northern Shan State. As regards, the RCSS and the SSJAC met in Taunggyi on August 9 and 10.
 
The SSPP and the SNLD are members of the SSJAC. Although they discussed with the SSJAC, the clashes broke out for three consecutive days from August 11 to 13. Moreover, the RCSS was in clash with the combined group of the SSPP and the TNLA, according to the information department of the SSPP.
 
“The RCSS, the SSPP and the TNLA should hold bilateral meeting for peace. Bilateral meetings play an important role in the reduction of the clashes. If not so, there will be more clashes between Tatmadaw and ethnic armed groups or among ethnic armed groups,” said Dr Min Zaw Oo.
 
Translated and Edited by Win Htut