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November 15, 2019

Finding solutions through nonviolent action

If we take a look at Myanmar’s history, we will find that conflicts and wars have taken place in each of our states and regions, and across various eras of our timeline. There was the war against the colonial expansionists before our independence, and then afterwards we fought in internal conflicts that have carried on to this day. Thus, there are casualties of war and underdevelopment issues in a country with no peace.
Reviewing the reasons for Myanmar’s delayed socioeconomic development, we can trace them back to the unsuccessful attempt at establishing stability 70 years ago. The world’s leading economists have pointed out that no matter how many kinds of projects we set out to accomplish, it will all be for naught if, beforehand, we can not build stability and peace within the country.
This is why we must swiftly implement internal peace, urgently and without pause. The unrest started in the 20th century must be quenched in the 21st century. The ongoing Union Peace Conference – 21st Century Panglong aims to free all the people of this country from the sounds of gunshots and strife plaguing their lives for so many years.
The Panglong Conference is the heart of our Union. If we lose the Panglong, then we lose our Union. The 21st Century Panglong Conference is injecting new blood into our nation, to raise it from the depths and drive towards development. Since it carries such tremendous importance with it, we wish for all ethnic armed organizations (EAOs) to participate in it, to benefit all the ethnic brothers and sisters of Myanmar.
It is heartening to see the National Reconciliation and Peace Centre (NRPC), and the Tatmadaw, striving to hold tripartite meetings with EAOs, either individually or collectively. However, it is grave news to hear of the recent ongoing fighting in Rakhine State. Just within three months, from 4 January to 28 March, there have been 103 conflicts, 44 mine blasts, 39 deaths, 46 casualties, and at least 20,000 people displaced from their homes. While there are fatalities on both sides of the fighting, the main victims are local residents caught in the crossfire.
The country is unhappy and the world shares our grief for these victims of conflicts. Continuing to use military means to solve political issues, knowing the futility of such methods, borders on the insane and inhumane.
We deeply urge all stakeholders to reach for the open door to the Union Peace Conference – 21st Century Panglong, so that, together, we may look for political solutions to our political issues.

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