CNF Delegation Arrives in Chin State for 2nd Round of Peace Talks
2 May 2011: A 17-member delegation of the armed group Chin National Front has arrived in Chin State’s capital Hakha for a second round of talks with the Burmese government as part of the ongoing peace process between the two adversaries.
The two sides are to discuss further plans towards the peace process and to define the “Terms of Reference” regarding the original nine-point agreement reached between the two parties in January 2012.
Developing the terms of reference or ‘TOR’ in the cease-fire process has been seen as crucial to maintaining an effective mechanism towards halting armed hostilities as both parties try to observe the agreement. The ToR is supposed to be the operational basis for determining the specific role of each group in meeting the points of the agreement.
Some of the points of the original agreement, among others, include provisions that would allow the CNF and its unarmed members to travel across Burma freely and for the two sides to work together on ‘development projects’ in Chin State as a preliminary confidence-building measure before substantive political settlement takes place.
The CNF, which took up arms following the 1988 uprising in Burma, has been demanding self-determination in the form of local autonomy and a federal democracy in Burma.
Further talks are to be held between the two parties to discuss more substantive political issues, according to the original agreement.
From the Burmese side the talks will involve Railway Minister U Aung Min, Forest Minister U Win Htun, as well as Chin State Chief Minister ex-Brig-General Hung Ngai, Border and Security Affairs Minister Col. Zaw Min Oo. CNF will be represented by a 17-member delegation led by its chief negotiator Dr. Sui Khar, who also led the previous rounds of peace talks on the CNF’s behalf.
According to the official statement from the CNF released on Monday, the discussion will be focused on mechanisms for cease-fire monitoring, peaceful resolution of conflict, fundamental human rights and the issues affecting the Chin Diasporas.
The CNF delegation, which arrived through Falam Town to Hakha, is set to leave for Matupi in the southern part of Chin State before heading back to the capital for official talks with the Burmese delegations from both the State and Union levels.
The CNF delegation was received in the capital by Chief Minister Hung Ngai and senior cabinet members. Facilitated by the Chin Peace and Tranquility Committee led by Christian religious leaders, the peace talks will take place on 7-8 May in Hakha.