Saturday, 25 January 2020

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UN envoy to attend Kachin peace talks

The UN’s Special Adviser on Myanmar, Vijay Nambiar, will attend the May 28 peace talks between the Kachin Independence Organization (KIO) and the Myanmar government’s Peace Making Committee at Myitkyina, according to Kachin peace broker San Aung.

 Vijay Nambiar, Secretary-General’s Special Adviser on Myanmar. UN Photo/JC McIlwaine“Nambiar and a subordinate will attend the meeting. The Myanmar government doesn’t want the Americans involved. This is just a testing period. We have to wait and see whether the government can accede to KIO requests if the UN is included in the meeting. It depends on that,” San Aung told Mizzima.

On Friday, San Aung told Mizzima that, in fact, it was Beijing that had objected to the involvement of the US and Britain.

Nambiar travelled to Myitkyina on February 5. At that time, he spoke with government officers and representatives of community based organizations (CBOs), saying his goal was to promote peace within Kachin State. CBO representatives later voiced criticisms about being unable to question the visiting envoy.

Although the KIO asked the government to invite the observers from the US, Britain, China and the UN, the government rejected all but those from the UN.

Peace facilitator Hla Maung Shwe told Mizzima yesterday that Minister Aung Min, vice chairman of Peace Making Committee, did not invite any special observers to the meeting.

San Aung said that KIO representatives led by Swan Lut Gam will attend the meeting. KIO chief of staff Gen. Gum Maw may also attend as the topics to be discussed include force deployments and the holding of political meetings. Gum Maw attended the last meeting, which was held at Ruili in China on March 11.

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