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Myanmar president pledges to continue peace process with armed groups
YANGON, Oct. 6 (Xinhua) -- Myanmar President U Thein Sein pledged on Tuesday to carry on domestic peace process with those armed groups who are in readiness to sign the Nationwide Ceasefire Accord (NCA). Full article here
NLD leader talks peace as war continues in Kachin State
Long -running civil war, the exploitation of natural resources and the looming shadow of China were among many tough issues Daw Aung San Suu Kyi had to tackle in a campaign rally in Kachin State’s trading centre of Bhamo yesterday. Full article here
NMSP agrees with NCA but will not sign in October
Despite agreeing with the nationwide ceasefire agreement (NCA) the New Mon State Party (NMSP) will not sign it on 15 October as the government wants because some ethnic armed organization (EAQs) have been excluded. Full article here
Nationwide Ceasefire Agreement will only be regional unless signed by all groups.
The Karen National Union (KNU) and seven other ethnic armed groups decided to sign the Nationwide Ceasefire Agreement (NCA) on September 29. Full article here
Seven ethnic armed groups, including the powerful Karen National Union (KNU), have agreed to sign a nationwide ceasefire agreement (NCA) with the Burmese government, calling into question whether the accord is truly “nationwide.” Several stakeholders in the peace process have adamantly demanded that the pact be all-inclusive, extending to a number of armed groups that are still in active conflict with the Burma Army, as well as a handful of others that are not viewed as eligible by government negotiators. Full article here
This paper from BCES analyses the latest developments related to NCA negotiations. Full article here.
Political exiles are returning to Myanmar to fight for a place in their home country's emerging democracy at next month's elections. Full article here
The EPRP listening project uses the power and art of listening to encourage ethnic people, who for too long have been silent, to talk about their own lives, their experience, and to be willing to share it. They may find 'so many shared experiences'. This telling and sharing can make them feel stronger, and sharing this information can make the community also feel stronger. A major activity of EPRP has been the development of its "Listening Project" and this publication was designed to support the training of local people regarding 'The Power and Art of Listening'. This Publication was inspired by Dr Khin Mar Mar Kyi, Gender Advisor to the Ethnic Peace Resources Project (EPRP) and produced by the EPRP staff. Illustrations are by Arkar.
EPRP database of resources related to the peace process in Myanmar, peace processes in general and including specific topics and resources focussing on gender issues in peace processes.
Ethnic Issues and Peace in Myanmar
Gender and Peace
The Ethnic Peace Resources Project (EPRP) provides information and training to support ethnic organisations and communities to participate in Myanmar's peace process.
This website provides a database of Peace Resources covering Myanmar-specific topics as well as more general information about international practice regarding peace processes and international norms and international law:
Ethnic Issues and Peace in Myanmar reflects the situation of ethnic people in Myanmar, as individual and as communities within the Union of Myanmar.
Peace Processes includes more general information from international sources related to peace processes (such as human rights norms, ceasefires, mediation and negotiation).
The Gender and Peace section provides resources to raise awareness and support gender equity in the ceasefire and peace process.
Myanmar's government will sign a long-negotiated ceasefire on October 15 but with only eight rebel forces, officials said Sunday, as several major insurgent groups declined to ink an agreement that excludes some factions.
More than two years of talks to end decades of civil war in the nation's rugged borderlands have gained momentum in recent weeks, with the government eager to reach a deal before November's general election.
Ref: Mizzima Published: 5 Oct 2015
CHIANG MAI, Thailand — The united front that ethnic armed groups have striven to maintain during almost two years of negotiations on a nationwide ceasefire agreement was upended this week, as ethnic groups were split on whether to ink an agreement the government is desperate to conclude this month. After a three-day summit in Chiang Mai which the Karen National Union insisted should be the last before a potential signing ceremony, only seven of 19 ethnic groups agreed to accede to the agreement.
On Wednesday, ethnic leaders focused on building mutual understanding between the two factions, with those holdout groups pledging to sign as soon as the government accepted all armed groups as signatories.
Ref: Mizzima Published: 1 Oct 2015
Myanmar’s peace process will continue to the next stages of political dialogue, advisers to the government said yesterday, even though only a minority of armed ethnic groups have agreed so far to sign what was intended to be a nationwide ceasefire accord. U Hla Maung Shwe, senior adviser to the Myanmar Peace Center, an official body that has facilitated talks with 16 armed groups for nearly two years, said the signing could take place on October 15 and that the date was expected to be set at a meeting between the government and the seven groups on October 3.
Ref: The Myanmar Times Published: 1 Oct 2015
A summit between leaders of armed ethnic groups to discuss whether they should sign the Nationwide Ceasefire Agreement has seen divisions emerge over its signing. On the first day of the summit, which is being held from 28 – 30 September in Chiang Mai, Thailand, the majority of the groups said that they should not hurriedly sign the Nationwide Ceasefire Agreement and that they should wait until the nationwide ceasefire process can include all groups including the Ta’ang National Liberation Army, the Arakan Army, and the Myanmar National Democratic Alliance Army.
Ref: Mizzima Published: 31st Sep 2015
No breakthrough was reported yesterday as leaders of 18 of Myanmar’s armed ethnic groups failed to resolve differences over how many would sign a nationwide ceasefire agreement with the government next month.
Pu Zing Cung, general secretary of the Chin National Front and a member of the groups’ joint negotiating team, told The Myanmar Times after a first day of talks that the leaders meeting in Chiang Mai would try again to reach a decision today.
“We will discuss and try to get a final decision on signing the NCA or not in our second day of talks,” he said.
Ref: The Myanmar Times Published: 29 Sep 2015
Seventeen Special Delegation (SD) members and non-SD members have been invited to attend a summit of ethnic armed group leaders in Chiang Mai, Thailand, from September 28 to 30.The summit will focus on the signing of the nationwide ceasefire agreement (NCA). Though the Myanmar government has said it will not accept every ethnic armed organisation as a signatory to the NCA, the ethnic organisations themselves has chosen to adhere to the principle of all -inclusiveness nonetheless.
Ref: Eleven Published: 29 Sep 2015
The sixth informal meeting participated by more than 50 representatives from government, parties, armed resistance movements and CSOs last Monday, 14 September, has confirmed that the country’s leading stakeholders face 3 critical issues that they must overcome in order to reach agreement on the framework for political dialogue (FPD).
Agreement on the FPD is the second step in the 7 September peace roadmap drafted by the government’s Union Peacemaking Work Committee (UPWC) and the ethnic armed organizations (EAOs)’ Special Delegation-Nationwide Ceasefire Coordination Team (SD-NCCT) on 7 August. According to the draft Nationwide Ceasefire Agreement (NCA) accepted by both sides, the FPD agreement must be reached within 30 days after the NCA signing.
Ref: Panglong News Publish: 21 September 2015
“See that place? That used to be a nice spot to go for a walk in the woods, but since the Tatmadaw took it over, we can’t go anymore. Because if they see the girls they will rape them.” Full article here
In the past two weeks, I spoke to about two dozen female candidates who are contesting Myanmar’s upcoming Nov. 8 elections, both over the phone and face-to-face. I was intrigued to find out about the challenges they face. Full article here
Nang Mya Oo is one of 24 female candidates from the Shan Nationalities League for Democracy (SNLD), who will be competing for a State Assembly seat in Taunggyi Township Constituency No. 1 in the November 8 general election. Full article here
RANGOON & CHIANG MAI, Thailand — Not an ounce of expression as Ja Nan retells the story of how her father first became involved in Kachin State ceasefire negotiations a quarter century ago. He was living abroad in 1989, she said, when Maran Brang Seng, then-chairman of the Kachin Independence Organization (KIO), called him to ask for help. She remembers her father’s account of that phone call, the chairman pleading, “You are over in Canada having a good life, but here we are dying.” Full article here
Tuan Cer Sung, better known as Cheery Zahau, was born in Sagaing Region to ethnic Chin parents. Her teacher father instilled in her a ‘can do’ spirit and after high school she started working for a Chin women’s group operating in Mizoram, along the India-Burma border. Full article here
Some 800 women are among the 6,189 candidates registered for the 8 November polls, according to the Union Election Commission (UEC). Full article here
Once the sole female peace negotiator between the Burmese government and ethnic armed groups, Saw Mra Razar Lin has worked shoulder-to-shoulder with powerful men for decades.
Ref: The Irrawaddy, Published 24 August
Drugs have long been a serious problem in resource-rich Kachin State. There are fewer female drug users than males, but females are often in more vulnerable situations and are less likely to receive help.
Ref.: The Irrawaddy, Published on 21 August 2015
As the deadline closes for political parties to finalize their candidate lists, those disclosed reveal a staggering gender imbalance despite promises that women’s empowerment would be prioritized in this year’s polls.
Ref: The Irrawaddy, Published 18 August 2015
Last month the British Embassy welcomed Ms Angelina Jolie Pitt to Burma, in her capacity as Co-Founder of the Preventing Sexual Violence in Conflict Initiative (PSVI). During her four day visit Ms Jolie Pitt helped to highlight the vulnerability of women and girls living in protracted conflict situations to sexual violence, trafficking and other human rights violations.
Ref: The Irrawaddy, Published 11 August 2015