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NLD to help hold second ‘Panglong conference’

February 14, 2013

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Audience watching the video message of NLD chairperson Aung San Suu Kyi at the NLD’s Union Day ceremony held in Yangon (Photo – EMG)

National League for Democracy (NLD), the main opposition party in Myanmar, will help sponsor a second ‘pinlon conference’ aimed at bringing unity among national races, Tin Oo, the party’s patron, said on February 12.

Pinlon conference, also known as Panglong Conference, convened national races and brought unity among them in Myanmar 66 years ago. People are now willing to hold it again to obtain national reconciliation, though no concrete plan or formal statement on it have come out from anybody yet.

NLD’s stance to help bring about the 21st century ‘pinlon conference’ had been declared by its chair Nobel laureate Aung San Suu Kyi to the party members, the patron addressed the attendees at the celebration of the 66th anniversary of Union Day in Yangon.

The occasion was not attended by Suu Kyi who is a parliamentarian herself, but it showed her message in a video at the event. Her party members, ethnic people, other political parties and delegates from various organizations attended the event.

“On the 66th anniversary of our Union Day, let’s take a vow to build a united and democratic country together with a strong and active will and share every good and bad experience,” Suu Kyi said.

She also questioned whether the goal to form a federal union that General Aung San and leaders of national races aimed that day of 66 years ago had been reached or not. Then, she defined ‘union’ as being united or forming parts to a whole, and ‘union spirit’ as the determination to always go through good and bad.

Moreover, she said she is prepared to participate in restoring peace in Kachin if the responsible bodies invite her to do so. She also said she will not refuse to contribute her best in any peace process not limiting to Kachin, if the responsible want her to participate. At the same time, she highlighted that it requires participation of the people in peace process to succeed.

In her speech, Suu Kyi urged to obtain national reconciliation and peace through the ‘pinlon’ spirit or the union spirit.

Pinlon conference took place in Shan State in February 1947. The historic event which came about due to the leadership of General Aung San, father of Aung San Suu Kyi, brought Pinlon Agreement between Myanmar and its ethnic leaders to obtain independence together from the British who had colonized the country for nearly a century.

The agreement accepted “full autonomy in internal administration for the Frontier Areas” in principle.

The day when the Pinlon Agreement was signed or February 12, was then designated as Union Day and Myanmar people have been celebrating it annually.

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