Mizoram peace broker to return to Burma soon

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Pu Zoramthanga, former rebel and ex-chief minister of Mizoram, will be returning to Burma soon to explore ways to assist in the current peace process, according to his secretary.

Mizoram Chief Minister Zoramthanga on a visit to Pyidaungsu Institute, Chiangmai, 20 January 2015. (Photo: PI)
Mizoram Chief Minister Zoramthanga on a visit to Pyidaungsu Institute, Chiangmai, 20 January 2015. (Photo: PI)

Pu Rosangzaula, calling on Chiangmai-based the Pyidaungsu Institute (PI) for Peace and Dialogue, whose director is also founder/president of SHAN, on 13 February, said it was due to the official request made to New Delhi by U Aung Min, Vice Chairman and principal negotiator of the government’s Union Peacemaking Work Committee (UPWC) on 26 January.

“On the last visit (to Chiangmai) we met Gen N-Banla (Vice President of Kachin Independence Organization and Chairman of the 12-armed movements alliance United Nationalities Federal Council) and talked with him for 3 hours,” he said. “We found out that he was really frank and open with us, something he couldn’t do with officials from Napyitaw. A need for a middle man is therefore great.”

He added that a 9 party coalition of Northeast India the United People’s Front (UPF) had also requested his mediation at a meeting in Shillong (Meghalaya state) on 16 February. “Naturally, he has accepted the request.”

Zoramthanga and his delegation visited Burma and Thailand, 12-22 January:

•    12-19 January in Burma
•    19-22 January in Thailand

According to Express News Service (ENS) of Aizawl, the capital of Mizoram, across from Burma’s Chin State, the ex-rebel leader was contacted by former British Prime Minister Tony Blair’s colleagues for his assistance in the current efforts to broker Burma’s peace process. He was reported to have met Dessislava Roussanova in New Delhi before coming.

The Myanmar Peace Center (MPC) that assisted the UPWC in negotiations confirmed the letter to New Delhi, saying, “We welcome the sharing of knowledge and experience from all.”

Earlier, U Aung Min had told Khuensai Jaiyen, PI director, “As you know, successive governments (of Burma) have been allergic against mediation by foreign third parties.”

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