A Mon State MP has called for boosting government support and funding for Mon national schools.During the September 11 Hluttaw session, MP U Aung Naing Oo said ethnic language classes are not satisfactorily supported at the moment as the schools,…"
Continued peace negotiations between the government and representatives of an ethnic alliance have been delayed, likely until next month, according to an official. Full article here"
Fighting in southern Shan State’s Palaung territory has resumed after nearly a month-long cessation, according to an official from an ethnic armed group engaged in the clashes. Full article here"
Civil society groups in Kayin (Karen) State last week discussed concerns that the official ceasefire monitoring body may restrict their peace-related activities. Full article here"
The Joint Monitoring Committee-Union (JMC-U), the authorised body to monitor ceasefire breaches, said it will not support ceasefire monitoring activities by civil society groups (CSOs) and community-based organisations (CBOs) because they create confusion in the official monitoring mechanism. Full article…"
The Restoration Council of Shan State (RCSS) has sent a high-level delegation to Nay Pyi Taw to hash out alleged disagreements over the ceasefire implementation, the organization’s chair said. Full article here"
State constitutions: a necessary step forward
A very positive development at the recent 2nd 21st Century Panglong Conference was the agreement that the states making up the future federal union of Myanmar should have the right (?) responsibility (?) to draw up state constitutions.
Ultimately, however, this very constructive development was put on hold due to the demand from the Tatmadaw that such constitutions must not contravene the 2008 constitution.
There is an important federal principle at stake here, namely that state and federal constitutions cannot be contradictory.
But Myanmar does not at present have a federal constitution, the 2008 constitution is that of a ‘union’, not a federal union’.
If the current political dialogue is truly federalist, then clearly states must be allowed and encouraged to freely draw up state constitutions, so that national dialogue can then focus on how draft state constitutions, and the existing 2008 constitution, can all be adapted to meet the needs of a federal union and a federal union constitution.
The Secession Issue
At the recent 2nd 21st Century Panglong conference, the Tatmadaw demanded a non-secession agreement. The predicable response was that some ethnic leaders demanded a secession clause. It would have been better at this stage if no mention was made of secession!
It would be good for all to keep in mind that a secession right was included in the 1947 constitution, precisely because all knew that the new Union of Myanmar was ‘on trial’. Clearly at that time the understanding was that ethnic peoples who had agreed to join the Union were unsure how they would be treated within the Union, so the secession clause was to reassure them.
If the situation after 60 years, is that ethnic peoples in some cases are unhappy with the treatment they have received until now, i.e. not reassured, it is hardly surprising that some feel unhappy with the unilateral un-negotiable demand for a non-secession clause.
It is up to the Tatmadaw and the Government to demonstrate, that things will be different in the new federal union. Only then will the idea of secession die away.
Land and Law in Myanmar ethnic areas
In 2016, Ethnic Peace Resources Project (EPRP) conducted two land-rights awareness projects in Shan and Karen States taking land knowledge sharing forums through local partner organisations to many townships and villages. This demonstrated clearly the importance of land law to the many people making up the rural populations of the different ethnic areas of Myanmar. This short opinion piece argues how important it is to ethnic people that land laws ‘fit’ their own local situation and customs.
21st Century Panglong Conference: the sub-national context of ‘political dialogue’ – (continued)
There is an urgent need to establish State based dialogues that can channel local concerns into national political dialogue. Part 3 of the EPRP Opinion series on 21st Century Panglong Conference here.
Rebel armies to attend peace talks
7 non-ceasefire signatory armed groups leave peace conference without reaching agreements in Myanmar
NAY PYI TAW, May 28 (Xinhua) — Seven Northern Alliance non-ceasefire signatory armed groups have left the second meeting of 21st Century Panglong Peace Conference on Saturday for home, one day before the end of the conference in Myanmar, without reaching agreements. Full article here
Peace deal for all closer: govt
Union Peace Discussion Joint Committee members said the Union Peace Summit or 21st-century Panglong had agreed policies acceptable to all armed groups, regardless of whether they signed the 2015 ceasefire. Full article here
Alliance of Ethnic Armed Groups Positions Itself to Meet With Myanmar’s Aung San Suu Kyi
Representatives from Myanmar’s peace negotiating team on Thursday met with a delegation of seven ethnic armed groups from the northeast that did not attend the second day of the government’s key peace talks, the chairman of the administration’s Peace Commission said. Full article here
Banned rebel groups to attend Myanmar peace talks
Myanmar moved a step closer to ending one of the world’s longest-running conflicts on Tuesday when it emerged that three previously barred rebel groups had been invited to peace talks. Full article here
Peace conference opens amid UNFC boycott
Hundreds of delegates from the government, military, civil society and ethnic armed groups have gathered for the opening of the Second 21st Century Panglong peace conference, amid a last-minute boycott by members of a key peace negotiating bloc. Full article here
- Voluntary Return, Restitution And The Right To Land For IDPs And Refugees In Myanmar
- Building Critical Mass for Peace in Myanmar
- Voluntary Return, Restitution and the Right to Land for IDPs and Refugees in Myanmar
- China and Myanmar's peace process
- Housing, Land and Property Restitution in Myanmar
- Taking the Long View of Burma’s Conflicts
- Legal Review of Recently Enacted Farmland Law and Vacant, Fallow and Virgin Lands Management Law
- Land Administration in Myanmar
Opinion & Analysis
Following weeks of negative bad press stemming from the conflict in Arakan State, the Restoration Council of Shan State’s (RCSS)…
Citizenship is undoubtedly one of the more contentious issues in Myanmar today. But with so much focus on the boundaries…
Forum Urges Women’s Involvement in Peace Process
YANGON — Participants of the Women, Peace and Security Forum in Yangon last week urged for more women to be included in Myanmar’s peace process. Full article here
Breaking the Devil’s Silence: Sexual Violence in Myanmar
Reported rape cases have sky-rocketed in recent years in Myanmar, with the majority of rape survivors being under-aged girls. According to the national police records, there were approximately 1,100 reported rape cases in 2016, 670 of which involved victims who were underage girls. Full article here
Displaced Kachin Mothers Struggle to Feed Their Children
SADUNG, Kachin State — On a foggy evening, a few women trundled along the slope of a valley, grasping bundles of green leaves, and carrying their babies in slings on their backs. They entered a compound of dozens of bamboo homes roofed with blue tarpaulin, some displaying the UNHCR logo, in the backdrop of paddy fields lush with rain and leading to mountains. Full article here
Karen Women Wary of Return to Myanmar
Naw Kwut was a young Karen woman when she stepped on a landmine and lost her right leg while she was forced to act as a porter for the Myanmar Army 20 years ago. Full article here
Our struggle is not a myth
Women’s rights is not a topic that needs a long-winded introduction; it has been a fight that has been taken up by millions across the globe in the hope of achieving basic human rights for women – young and old, born or chosen – everywhere. Despite the protests and movements made in the name of women rights, in this day and age there are still those who believe our struggle is not real. Full article here
Families Unplanned in Kachin IDP Camps
WAINGMAW & MYITKYINA, Kachin State — Holding her eight-month-old baby close to her chest, young mother Roi San chased after her other child, a toddler running in front of her. The toddler ran barefoot across the ground. Full article here