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Rebel ethnic armies to attend Shan national conference next month

February 28, 2013

CREDIT EMG

Shan and Kayah armed groups will attend the Shan national conference in Lashio, northern Shan State, next month, representatives said.   

Eleven political parties and 14 armed Shan and Kayah groups that have made peace with the government have been invited to the conference, according to the Shan National League for Democracy, which is organising the conference.

The political parties represent various ethnic groups – Shan, Kokant, Pao, Danu, Inn, Wa and Kayan – and the 14 armed groups comprise eight Kayah and six Shan armies, said league secretary Sai Nyunt Lwin.

“The situation between government army and Shan State Army will not disrupt the conference,” he said, referring to the armed clashes between government and ethnic troops that took place on February 19 and 20.

The clashes occurred between “low-level troops”, President’s Office Minister Aung Min said last week.

The theme of the Shan conference is “building trust for peace”. It is the second of a three-step process, Shan representatives said. The first step was a three-day meeting in Yangon last November and the third step will be a conference drawing representatives from all ethnic groups and the government.

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