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Tatmadaw demands immediate Defence and Security Council meeting

Published Dec 11, 2019
Updated Feb 05, 2020

Tatmadaw (Defence Services) MPs called for a Defence and Security Council meeting which has never been held during the rule of incumbent government led by National League for Democracy (NLD) party, at the earliest date, in the Union Parliament.

Tatmadaw MPs pointed out that the government should hold the Defence and Security Council meeting for the security of Rakhine State and northern Shan State where Tatmadaw and ethnic armed groups especially the northern alliance are fiercely fighting.

This Tatmadaw MP called for the meeting during deliberations on a report submitted by the Constitution Amendment Joint Study and Scrutiny Committee on a draft amendment bill submitted by a group of MPs led by opposition Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP) MP Sai Than Naing.

Tatmadaw MP Brig. Gen. Kyaw Sann Linn said that the government should declare three ethnic armed groups of northern alliance namely Arakan Army (AA), Ta’ang National Liberation Army (TNLA) and Myanmar National Democratic Alliance Army (MNDAA) as ‘terrorist insurgents.’

Similarly, another Tatmadaw MP, Maj. Min Min, deliberated in parliament session that this matter must be decided through negotiation and discussion at the Defence and Security Council meeting to protect the lives, wealth and shelters of local people in Rakhine State and northern Shan State.

Political analyst Than Soe Naing said, “National unity and solidarity are very important at this time as our State Counsellor is going to The Hague to face trial at International Court of Justice (ICJ). So, I don’t like Tatmadaw MPs are demanding to call and hold Defence and Security Council meeting at this crucial time.”

In the constitution amendment bill jointly drafted and submitted by opposition USDP MPs led by Sai Than Naing and Tatmadaw MPs, the amended provision reportedly stipulates to hold Defence and Security Council meetings regularly once every two months and also it must be called when five members of this council called for holding an emergency meeting.

The draft of this amendment bill also stipulates, as one of the functions of this council, the council shall give suggestion to President for consideration of dissolving parliaments when the check and balance between legislative and executive branches are deteriorating.

The Defence and Security Council is constituted with 11 members in ex-officio positions of President, two Vice-President, two speakers of lower and upper house, Tatmadaw C-in-C, Vice Tatmadaw C-in-C, Minister of Defence, Minister of Home Affairs, Minister of Border and Security Affairs and Minister of Foreign Affairs.