Mon Party start ‘peace talks’ with government

The New Mon State Party and a government delegation headed by Burma’s Minister for Railways, U Aung Min held preliminary ‘peace talks’ in Thailand on the 22nd December.

The New Mon State Party confirmed to Karen News that the meeting with the Burma government representatives took place in Thailand.

“The meeting was only at the preliminary stage. We will try to find ways to reopen liaison offices between us and the government, start the necessary talking needed for a long-term political solution, initiate a ceasefire, and to hold national talks similar to the historical ‘Panglong conference’.”

The meeting in Sangkhalburi, Kanchanaburi Province was attended by NMSP Executive Committee members and Naing Han Tha, the secretary general said.

“They [government] propose to meet next with us in January, but we have not decided yet if it is possible to meet or not. We have to have time to discuss with our people first.

The government’s delegation led by U Aung Min has recently met with other ethnic groups, such as the Karen National Union, Shan and Kachin for ‘peace talks’, but this is the first time the senior national delegation has met with the Mon party. In previous meetings in October the NMSP met only with state level delegates in Ye Town and in November at the NMSP headquarters — at the talks the NMSP proposed for a national.

The NMSP say they will discuss the ‘peace talks’ at their 8th party conference to be held at their headquarter starting on the 21st December – sources say it is expected that as many as one hundred members will attend.

The NMSP signed a ceasefire with the Burma military dictatorship in 1995 and it was broken after the Burma Army exerted pressure on the NMSP to surrender its arms in September 2010.

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