Statement on behalf of Special Adviser Vijay Nambiar
Today, on Myanmar’s Union Day, a Deed of Commitment was signed by a number of stakeholders in the country, including President U Thein Sein, Speaker Thura U Shwe Mann, Tatmadaw, political parties and Ethnic Armed Organizations. I welcome the commitments made on Union Day to end armed conflict in Myanmar and to resolve grievances through dialogue rather than through armed force and to establish a Union based on democratic and federal principles. This is an historic moment as it is the first time that a President of Myanmar has formally signed a commitment to build a democratic and federal union. We are convinced that President U Then Sein’s declared commitment will further strengthen the reform process in Myanmar and create a conducive environment for the continuing efforts to reach a Nationwide Ceasefire Agreement.
As an Observer to the peace dialogue between Union Peace Working Committee (UPWC) and the Nationwide Ceasefire Coordination Team (NCCT), I urge all parties in Myanmar to continue negotiations to reach a Nationwide Ceasefire Agreement as also stated in the Deed of Commitment and welcome the courageous and challenging efforts of the UPWC and NCCT to end more than sixty years of armed conflict. Impressive progress has been made in the past four years despite the deep complexities faced by all. At the same time many challenges and concerns remain.
It is my hope and expectation that this commitment will help create a more conducive environment to address the continuing escalation of conflict in Kachin and Shan State and the serious impact it has had on the civilian population. The UN strongly urges all parties involved to urgently continue negotiations, and in particular military-to-military talks, to defuse the situation; implement previous agreements as well as set in place mechanisms to avoid future clashes. Furthermore we urge all parties to address the serious situation faced by the many internally displaced and to ensure their safety and well-being.
We welcome the commitment to start work on a Framework for a Political Dialogue as soon as possible and expect that maximum effort will be made by all parties to ensure that every stakeholder will participate in an inclusive process as soon as possible. The UN and my Office will continue to encourage and support all parties towards the common aim we believe they all share: to achieve lasting peace in Myanmar.