Thursday, 14 November 2019

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Wa issue appeal to new government for a political dialogue

Chiang Mai (Mizzima) – The United Wa State Party (UWSP), the political wing of the strongest ethnic armed group, says that it wants to begin a political dialogue with the new Burmese government.  

The United Wa State Army is the strongest armed group in Burma with an estimated 30,000 troops. Photo: AFPA member of the UWSP central committee told Mizzima the group is ready to talk, but it does not know how their proposal will be received.

On February 5,  UWSP chairman Bao Yu Xiang sent felicitations to newly elected President Thein Sein. In the message, Bao Yu Xiang urged him to work to end the armed conflicts in the country. 

However, Bao Yu Xiang said, ‘In the past, they wore military uniforms. Now, they wear Burmese traditional turbans in the Parliament. That’s all they changed’.

The UWSA has more than 30,000 troops, according to observers. During the UWSP’s party conference in March, chairman Bao Yu Xiang said that the group had the capaciy to defend its territory and would not give up even one inch of land.    

He said he believed that when Jia Qinglin, a member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China, recently met with President Thein Sein, they talked about Sino-Burmese border security issues. In the past, China has called for a peaceful resolution to the disputes between ethnic groups and the central government.

In the past year, both the Wa and Burmese government troops have been preparing for possible clashes.

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