Lack of dialogue events in Shan and Rakhine States could affect next peace conference meeting

Kyaw Zin Win
Possible difficulties may arise in the Third 21st Century Panglong Union Peace Conference as the government has not yet held national-level nationality political dialogues in Shan and Rakhine States, said Lt-Colonel Sai Maing, a spokesman for the RCSS/SSA, which signed the NCA with the government.
The political dialogue framework stated that the Union Peace Conference, also known as the 21st Century Panglong Conference, must be held twice a year. The next conference will be held in the coming December.
Asked if Shan State couldn’t hold nationality political dialogue and why that is, Sai Maing replied that EAOs might face difficulties at the December peace conference. That is because the RCSS cannot hold a nationality political dialogue in Shan State, and the same goes for the ALP.
The government would not give permission to the ALP because of the conflicts in Rakhine. The government should consider deciding where the nationality political dialogue of the ALP could be held in Rakhine State because conflicts are not cropping up everywhere in Rakhine State.
The ALP sent a letter in early September saying it would hold the nationality political dialogue to the Government Peace Commission in early September. It has not been confirmed yet, said Saw Mya Yazar Lin, CEC member of the ALP.
The RCSS/SSA got permission from the government to hold the nationality political dialogue, but the government has yet to allow the RCSS to hold its nationality political dialogue in Taunggyi. Therefore, the RCSS has unable to hold its dialogue up until now.
“We demand to hold the nationality political dialogue in Taunggyi. Therefore, we would like the government to review the venue of holding the dialogue. It is not a meeting on a military subject,” said Sai Maing.
“We mainly think of the people. We need to discuss things with the people. We must consider the travel and accommodation of the people. Some are old people. Therefore, we demand Taunggyi be held. Only if we hold the nationality political dialogue, can we seek the desires of the people. If not, we will have nothing about the desires of the people to submit to the third conference when it is held”, said Sai Maing.
NCA signatories are working as a group. If an NCA signatory has a difficulty, it will have the effect on others, he said