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Myanmar govt and KIO sign 7-point agreement


After three days of peace talks in Myitkyina, the Myanmar government peace delegation and the Kachin Independence Organization (KIO) on Thursday signed a seven-point preliminary agreement in the presence of UN and Chinese government observers.

Media scramble to take photos of the Kachin and Myanmar government delegations as they sit down to sign a preliminary 7-point agreement on Thursday, May 31, 2013, in Myitkyina.  (Photo: Mizzima)
Media scramble to take photos of the Kachin and Myanmar government delegations as they sit down to sign a preliminary 7-point agreement on Thursday, May 31, 2013, in Myitkyina.  (Photo: Mizzima)
No ceasefire was declared, though both sides agreed to further dialogue.

An official statement signed by both parties read:

1. The Union Peace Working Committee delegation led by H.E. U Aung Min held peace talks with the Kachin Independence Organization (KIO) delegation led by U Sumlut Gam between May 28, 2013 to May 30, 2013 at the Majoi Gawk Nu on Manau Wang in Myitkyina.

The peace meeting was also attended by the following observers: Mr. Vijay Nambir, Special Advisor to the Secretary General of the United Nations on Myanmar; Mr. Lu Zhi, Deputy Chief of Mission from the Embassy of the Peoples’ Republic of China; representatives from eight ethnic armed groups; and 10 Kachin community leaders.

2. With an aim of achieving political agreements that guarantee the building of lasting peace, representatives from both delegations agree to the following terms in the presence of witnesses:

(a) The Government of Myanmar and the KIO agree to hold political dialogue.
(b) The Parties agree to undertake efforts to achieve de-escalation and cessation of hostilities.
(c) The Parties agree in principle to establish Joint Monitoring Committees.
(d) The Parties agree to continue to undertake relief, rehabilitation, and resettlement of the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in consultation with each other.
(e) The Parties agree to continue discussions on military matters related to repositioning of troops.
(f) The Parties agree to the establishment of a Myitkyina-based
KIO technical team in order to undertake necessary measures for the peace process more effectively.
(g) The parties agree to continue to allow the participation of representatives of all observer groups that are present in the peace meeting held on May 28-30, 2013 for the upcoming meeting. If either Party wishes to invite additional observers, the Parties also agree to invite these additional observers in consultation with each other.

Ah Dau, a Kachin observer at the negotiations, said, “This is a preliminary agreement ahead of further steps. It is neither a ceasefire agreement nor a ‘peace agreement’. I would say that this is just an agreement to continue political dialogue.”

It has been learnt by Mizzima that the Joint Monitoring Committee will comprise military officers from both sides, community leaders and reliable experts and scholars.

The Myanmar government peace delegation and KIO held a joint press conference on Thursday evening.

“The government peace delegation discussed matters frankly in the presence of media and international observers,” Zai Du, a young Kachin observer, told Mizzima. “Intentions appear sincere to implement the points of the agreement. There are no impractical points, so we hope this leads to better things.”

Another observer said that the KIO delegation will visit refugee camps in the Myitkyina area.

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