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Agenda 2020: Myanmar Ethnic Peace Process

Published Dec 24, 2019
Updated Feb 05, 2020

The Government delegation and Nationwide Ceasefire Agreement -Signatories (NCA-S) held a preliminary coordination meeting on 23 December at the National Reconciliation and Peace Centre (NRPC) in Yangon, and agreed to organize the 8th Joint

Implementation Coordination Meeting (JICM) on Nationwide Ceasefire Agreement in January 2020.

State Counsellor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, as a Chairperson of NRPC, disclosed the three points of future the peace process at the 4th anniversary of NCA held in Nay Pyi Taw in October.

The broad framework for peace has been first to proceed rapidly with the 21st Century Union Peace Conference also known as the Panglong Conference.

The second was to attract all the stakeholders into the peace process, to reduce conflicts with the armed organizations which have not signed the NCA and the third is to ensure all the people enjoy the fruitful results of peace and to fulfil the needs of people in conflict-affected areas.

While a number of formal and informal discussions were held between the NRPC and the the ethnic armed organizations (EAOs), both signatories and non-signatories to the NCA, yet no tangible gains were made on the ground and fighting broke out in the Shan, Kachin and Rakhine states throughout the year and more recently in Mon State.

The government and the military do not appear to be on board which has possibly resulted in the latter not being present in talks at a number of times during the year with the ethnic groups unwilling to reach a finality before the military was on board.
This may also be an outcome of the differences that have emerged between the government and the Tatmadaw over amendments to the Constitution.

Meanwhile situation in the Rakhine State which has also been a witness to large scale outflow of the Rohingya in 2017, 2018 has deteriorated considerably with the Arakan Army (AA) taking on the Myanmar Army in intense contests resulting in large number of casualties on both sides.