Myanmar’s junta invites resistance forces to join ceasefire talks

The military junta in Naypyidaw has asked the country’s resistance forces to join ceasefire talks and to work together to deliver effective humanitarian assistance to the needy people of Myanmar.

According to a joint press statement, released on the first of a two-day visit by ASEAN Chair and Cambodian prime minister Hun Sen, the ceasefire will be extended for the rest of this year. The junta asked all concerned to join the ceasefire talks, which are aimed at deescalating tension and enabling constructive dialogue between stakeholders, to achieve enduring peace and national development.

The junta, officially known as the State Administrative Council (SAC), would also welcome the participation of the ASEAN special envoy in the ceasefire talks with the armed ethnic organisations and other stakeholders. This is part of ASEAN’s five-point consensus.

On humanitarian assistance, the two sides support the convening of a meeting of stakeholders. According to the press statement, these include ASEAN’s special envoy, Secretary General and Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Management Centre and Myanmar’s National Task Force to Facilitate Provision of Humanitarian Assistance, the Red Cross Society and the relevant UN Specialised Agencies.

During the discussion, both leaders also acknowledged the critical importance of setting up mechanisms and proper facilities for COVID-19 vaccination programs, along with the provision of humanitarian assistance without discrimination.

Senior General Min Aung Hlaing also congratulated Cambodia’s Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Prak Sokhonn on becoming the new ASEAN special envoy. The junta leader pledged to support him in fulfilling his mandate in implementing the five-point consensus.

Hun Sen made the two-day trip to Naypyidaw at the invitation of Myanmar. During the discussion yesterday, he stressed that, based on the experience and lessons learned from Cambodia’s peace process, complete peace and national reconciliation cannot be achieved without participation and agreement from all parties involved.

Senior General Min Aung Hlaing has assured that he will facilitate the ASEAN special envoy’s meetings with concerned parties, including the armed ethnic organisations.

The outcome of Hun Sen’s trip will be reported to ASEAN foreign ministers at the upcoming retreat, on Jan 19th in Siem Reap. During the senior officials’ meeting on Jan 5th, the ASEAN chair informed ASEAN colleagues of Hun Sen’s visit and his strategies.

Source: Thai Public Broadcasting Service