Monday, 18 November 2019

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Hurdles in reuniting with DKBA: KNU

New Delhi (Mizzima) – A senior Karen National Union (KNU) leader is of the opinion that it is still difficult to reunite with its breakaway faction the ‘Democratic Karen Buddhist Army’ (DKBA).

The reaction of KNU General Secretary Naw Si Pho Ra Sein follows the news of the meeting between KNU-KNLA Chief of Staff Maj. Gen. Mutu Sae Pho and Myaingyi Ngu Abbot U Thu Zana from DKBA on the Thai-Burma border on October 19.

“It is still difficult to reunite with the DKBA but we will persuade and mobilize them gradually. Now many of them are convinced about the SPDC’s (junta) ways,” the KNU General Secretary said. But she could not confirm the news about the secret meeting between KNU and DKBA.

Even if such a meeting between them actually took place, it must be because of the KNU’s position and initiative, she added.

KNU will maintain its three conditions for dealing with and mobilizing the DKBA.

“There are don’t do’s as the junta says; don’t oppose the people, don’t get involved in drug trafficking. We have set these preconditions in dealing with the DKBA since they split from our organization,” she said.

“The DKBA is serving as a Border Guard (under the junta). They are launching military operations against KNU outposts at the behest of the regime. Now they are divided and fissures have crept in after being convinced about the junta’s activities,” she further said.

Ten DKBA soldiers have returned to their mother organization, KNU, since June this year.

The DKBA split from KNU in 1995 and arrived at a ceasefire agreement with the junta after which they were allowed to freely conduct some businesses including logging.

Like the ceasefire group, the New Democratic Army-Kachin (NDA-K), DKBA has already accepted the junta’s proposal of transforming into the Border Guard Force (BGF). The remaining ceasefire groups such as KIO, UWSA and Kokang troops are still refusing to accept the junta’s proposal.

Myainggyingu abbot from DKBA U Thu Zana sent a letter to KNU requesting both sides to stop hostilities and work for peace. The letter was distributed in the last week of the previous month.


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