Myanmar Peace Monitor

Ethnic Peace Plan

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Govt vs. Ethnic road map Panglong Agreement WGEC Political Framework EAGs proposal for nationwide ceasefire

 

 

 

All ethnic groups believe that only negotiations on the terms of the Panglong Agreement based on self-determination, federalism and ethnic equality will resolve the ethnic conflict in Myanmar. However there is no cohesive plan or body that represents all armed groups.

Presently the United Nationalities Federal Council (UNFC) is the most active ethnic alliance. However it does not represent all of the ethnic armed groups. Several of its members are involved in the Working Group on Ethnic Coordination (WGEC), which is administered and financed by the Brussels-based Euro-Burma Office (EBO). The EBO is the main organization responsible for liaising and coordinating with the MPSI.

Both the UNFC and WGEC have called for alternatives to the government’s BGF scheme and 2008 constitution. While the government claims that changes are possible by winning seats in parliament, ethnic armed groups are calling for political dialogue outside parliament.

Several of the ethnic armed groups’ main demands (excluding the government’s guiding principles that were previously mentioned) are: 

  1. Amnesty/legalization of ethnic groups
  2. International mediators, monitoring bodies, public consultation
  3. Panglong terms and pan-ethnic dialogue
  4. Cultural protection
  5. Human rights and a special commission to ensure these rights are protected
  6. Environmental protection
  7. Resettlement/integration of refugees and soldiers

unfcNATIONWIDE CEASEFIRE COORDINATING TEAM members:

1. Team Leader
2. Deputy Leader 1
3. Deputy Leader 2
4. Member
5. Member
6. Member
7. Member
8. Member
9. Member
10. Member
11. Member
12. Member
13. Member
Nai Hantha, General-Secretary, New Mon State Party
Padoh Kwe Htoo Win, Gen-Sec, Karen National Union
Maj. Gen. Gun Maw, Deputy Commander-in-Chief, KIO
Lt. Col. Kyaw Han, Arakan Army
Ms Mra Raza Lin, Central Committee, Arakan Liberation Party
Twan Zaw, General-Secretary, Arakan National Council
Dr Lian Sakhong, Presidium, Chin National Front
Col. Saw Lon Long, Democratic Karen Benevolent Army
Shwe Myo Thant, Joint Secretary, Karenni National Progress Party
Gen. Dr Timothy, Foreign Affairs, KNU/KNLA Peace Council
Hkun Okker, Patron, Pa-O National Liberation Organization
Sai Ba Tun, Central Committee, Shan State Progress Party
Ta Ai Nyunt, Secretary-General, Wa National Organization

Note: The Restoration Council for Shan State refrained from becoming a member of the NCCT, since the newly formed Committee for Shan State Unity (Oct 2013) of which it is a member, requires that it be consulted first.

unfcUnited Nationalities Federal Council (UNFC)

The UNFC is the latest coalition of ethnic armed groups. The UNFC is a transformation of the former Committee for the Emergence of Federal Union (CEFU) founded in November 2010. Currently, the UNFC are advocating for talks with the government as a united ethnic front. Their demands during negotiations with the government are based on the second draft of the 2008 Federal Constitution. pdf logo

Objectives:
UNFC’s objectives: establish a Federal Union (in Myanmar), form a Federal Union Army (FUA), protect ethnic areas.

Membership (11):
CNF, KIO, KNU, KNPP, NMSP, SSPP, LDU, NUPA/ANC, PNLO, PSLF/TNLA, WNO

Organizational structure:
Each member group appoints 2-4 individuals to act as representatives in the UNFC. Presently, there are 22 members that make up the UNFC Council, 10 have been elected to serve in the central executive committee.

Federal Union Army: formed in December 2011, Commander in Chief Gen. Bee Htoo (from KNPP)

International campaign:

nippon foundationThe UNFC works closely with the Nippon Foundation on its peace negotiation with the government. It secured a US$3million in emergency aid from the Nippon Foundation in Oct 2012, but their request for Japan to act as a mediator in negotiations with the government however has not received a response. A UNFC delegate also travelled to the US to talk about Myanmar's ethnic peace processes with US and UN officials in Sept 2012, but there has been no follow up news.

UNFC Six Point Plan:

(Sept 28, 2012) pdf logo

  1. to host a meeting with civil society and all ethnic armed groups
  2. a meeting between all ethnic armed groups and government representatives monitored by the international community
  3. referendums in each ethnic state to ratify agreements reached
  4. a meeting with all ethnic people to talk about peace
  5. tripartite dialogue between the government, democracy activists and ethnic people
  6. implementation of agreements reached within a set timeframe
UNFC's objection to GVT peace plan:

Points 5-8 --- "are measures to control our armed ethnic resistance organizations and mould them into an entity as desired by the government, before any political settlement is achieved."

UNFC Demands:

UNFC has requested discussion on five main issues with the government

  1. Planning a meeting between UNFC and the government in Japan under the moderation of The Nippon Foundation [rejected by the government, too far and expensive, should be inside the country at the MPC]
  2. How to solve the ongoing sectarian violence in Rakhine state
  3. The implementation of UNFC’s Six Point Ethnic Peace Roadmap
  4. Ending the fighting between the KIO and government troops
  5. Legalize armed groups - currently those that have signed new ceasefire agreements are still illegal organizations, although they are allowed to operate within government-controlled cities and towns [new demand]
Informal agreement: (Nov.9, 2012)​
  1. Resolve political issues by political means
  2. Government should hold political dialogue with armed groups collectively and not separately
  3. Discuss the following topics during the upcoming formal meeting in the Myanmar Peace Center (MPC) in Yangon: framework for political dialogue, “talking points” or agenda, timeline, technical assistance and logistics

Euro Burma Office & the Working Group on Ethnic Coordination

Euro-Burma Office
Director: Harn Yawnghwe

eu bur officeThe EBO has been a key figure in brokering peace talks between ethnic militia groups and the government. They convened a meeting of all ethnic groups involved in negotiations with the government and hosted monthly "Ethnic Coordination" meetings before the Working group on ethnic coordination (WGEC) was formed in June 2012 which it logistically and administratively supports. Several of the WGEC members overlap with the UNFC and Ethnic Nationalities Council (ENC).

norwayThe EBO is currently also the conduit for funds from the Myanmar Peace Support Initiative to the Working Group on Ethnic coordination. It aims to coordinate ongoing ceasefire negotiations and develop a common peace plan. Activities funded by the MPSI are primarily training and capacity building, provided by international NGOs of the Peace Donor Support Group (PDSG).

 

Working Group for Ethnic Coordination

The WGEC aims to coordinate ongoing ceasefire negotiations and develop a common peace plan. Activities funded by the MPSI are primarily training and capacity building that are provided by INGOs of the International Peace Support Group (IPSG).

The WGEC was conceived at a conference attended by ethnic armed groups that took place between Feb. 26-28, 2012; 6 months after President Thein Sein issued a formal invitation for peace talks. Leaders of 17 armed groups were gathered at the meeting, 9 of which had already made positive responses to the President’s call. These included 11 UNFC members and 6 UNFC observer groups RCSS/SSA, DKBA-5, KPC, non-BGF faction of the MNDAA (Peng Daxun, son of ousted leader Peng Jiasheng), KNLP and KNPLF (BGF).

The WGEC was created in June, 2012 and initially made up of representatives from ethnic armed groups and advisors from 7 states. Following the Ethnic Nationalities Conference in September, civil society organizations representatives (2 representatives each from youth, women and issue-based CBOs) were added. The WGEC meets once a month to work out a framework for upcoming political dialogue this includes: agenda, composition, mandate, structure, transitional arrangement and core principles, among others.

All of WGEC’s membership apart from advisers is derived from resistance and activist organizations. They do not receive salaries for their work and representatives from each group take turns in facilitating the monthly meetings. There are no permanent WGEC offices.

WGEC completed a draft of the framework for Political dialogue in April 2013 which they have submitted to the Myanmar Peace Center. However they are still waiting for feedback from all armed groups

Agreement on the following terms:
  1. the biggest challenge is to amend the 2008 constitution
  2. trying to amend it within Parliament is out of the question
  3. the basis for negotiations must be the 1947 Panglong Agreement through which the Union came into existence
  4. there needs be a common set of principles and plan for all the groups involved
  5. popular participation and cooperation with democratic forces are necessary to achieve working solutions
Two resolutions:
  1. 3-stage peace plan (ceasefire, implementation of agreements, and political dialogue)
  2. form a working group to develop common principles and plans for the peace process

20130418 dialogue and peace structure english

20130418 panglong graphic english

burma road_map in english

pdf logoENC 2012 statement​ (16 Sept 2012)

pdf logoENC 6-point program (16 Sept 2012)

WGEC MEMBERS
Resource Persons
  1. U Khuensai Jaiyen (SHAN)
  2. Daw Shelley Seng (KWAT)
  3. Lt. Gen. Tu Tu Lay (KNU)
  4. Salai Leng Hmon (ENC)
  5. Col. Khun Okkar (PNLO)
CSO
    women org. reps
  1. Daw Moon Nay Li (KWAT, WLB)
  2. Saw San Nyein Thu (RWU, WLB)
  3. youth org.reps
  4. Naw Seng (SYCB)
  5. Kya Yi Shay (NY Forum)
  6. issue based org.reps
  7. Ko Shwe (KESAN)
  8. Ko Sai Sai (Burma Rivers Network)
Ethnic States Representatives
  1. Daw Saw Mya Raza Lin (Rakhine)
  2. Sin Wah (Kachin)
  3. Si Poh Rasein (Karen)
  4. Nai Hong Sar (Mon)
  5. Khu Oo Reh (Kayah)
  6. Dr. Shwe Khar (Chin)
  7. Saw Lamon (Shan)
  8. Col. Perng Fa (Shan North)

Non-UNFC ceasefire groups​

UWSA, NDAA-ESS, RCSS/SSA, DKBA-5, KPC, AA, ABSDF and NSCN-K are not members of the UNFC, but generally follow the same guiding principles: ethnic rights and federalism.

RCSS/SSA, DKBA-5, KPC, KNLP, KNPLF and non-BGF faction of the MNDAA are observers of the UNFC. However an important issue raised by individual ethnic armed groups about the UNFC is that it works too slowly and is not as effective in achieving its goals as they would like.

UWSA, NDAA, RCSS/SSA did not join the UNFC as official members, which they see as too Western oriented. The three groups have good relations with each other and maintain regular contact.

UWSA already has a self-administered zone as stipulated by the 2008 Constitution which consists of 6 townships in Shan state: Hopang, Mongmao, Pangwaing (Pangwai), Namphan (Nahpan), Metman (Markmang) and Panghsang (Pangkham). Its official name was announced by decree on 20 August 2010. The division is set to be self-administered by the Wa people, but is administered by the UWSA aka the official Wa Special Region 2 of Shan state.

DKBA-5 and KPC maintain close relationships with their former mother organization KNU and generally follow its leadership. However, they have not joined the UNFC because they do not agree with all their principles and prefer to negotiate with the government on their own terms.

ABSDF and AA are also unofficially following UNFC policy.

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