Military chief promises no sound of guns if all groups wishing for peace observe agreement

Soe Min Htike

Commander-in-Chief of Defence Services Senior General Min Aung Hlaing said all should be aware that the military is actively working together with the government for Myanmar's peace efforts not because it is weak, and there would be no sound of guns if all groups with the true wish for peace observe the prescribed agreements, the Office of the Commander-in-Chief reported.

The military chief made the remark at the opening of the third round of the Union Peace Conference also known as the 21st Century Panglong Conference held in Nay Pyi Taw on July 11.

In December 2015, Union Parliament which represents the entire people unanimously approved the Nationwide Ceasefire Agreement (NCA) in accord with democratic procedures. So, every ethnic armed group is to sign the NCA. Talking about no necessity to sign the accord because there is no fighting and already-existing agreements may go against the current democratic ethics, he pointed out.    

"In the interests of the country and the people, we want to end the armed conflicts which have been burning throughout successive periods.  During our term, we want to build a modern, developed, united and strong, new democratic nation in accordance with the wishes of people" said the military chief.

He called for continued talks until sustainable results come out as the situation has frequently changed after the talks were halted before producing a solution.

"If the peace process takes longer than it is necessary, there could be instigation, interference and manipulation, thus undermining hard-earned trust and agreement. Therefore, I would like to urge the stakeholders to negotiate thoroughly with genuine goodwill during the conference in the interests of the State and national ethnic people," said Senior General Min Aung Hlaing.

He said bold steps must be taken without delay in implementing the peace process, stressing the need to continue it till completion at the 2nd Union Peace Conference due in 2020.

The military chief said under the present National League for Democracy-led government, the military has joined the Union Peace Dialogue Joint Committee and joint monitoring committees at various levels. The military, applying its experience, is doing its utmost for the success of the government’s peace process.

He commented that servicemen really wanted peace as they are the ones who have to fight battles unavoidably. So the military wants to achieve real peace as quickly as possible in such a way that cannot harm the Union, national unity, independence and sovereignty, he added.