KIO/KIA rejects Min Aung Hlaing talks invitation

KIO/KIA rejects Min Aung Hlaing talks invitation

The Central Committee of the Kachin Independence Organization (KIO) has issued a statement ruling out the possibility of peace talks with Min Aung Hlaing. The coup leader had recently invited all of Burma’s EAOs to participate in face-to-face negotiations.

The organization said it will only participate in peace talks when every group party to the current crisis agrees to attend.

When broadcasting his “invitation”, Min Aung Hlaing had explicitly state that “terrorist groups” — meaning the country’s popular National Unity Govnernment and loosely related People’s Defense Forces — would be exempt.

KIO spokesman Colonel Naw Bu said it would be impossible to hold talks concerning a return to democracy without the inclusion of the NUG and other groups prominent in Burma’s Spring Revolution.

“They are not interested in a real solution to the current political crisis. Without inviting the NUG and other revolutionary groups, democracy cannot be achieved,” he said.

Despite Min Aung Hlaing’s disingenuous pleas, fighting across the country continues to intensify. Many see the senior general’s attempts to court Burma’s EAOs as a reaction to an announcement by the NUG — which counts five major armed groups amongst its constituent members — that its resistance forces, alleged to now have vastly improved operational capacity, are to initiate an “offensive war” against the military.

Min Aung Hlaing proposed the in-person meeting with EROs in a speech aired in state media on April 22. According to the KIO’s statement, KIO received a letter from Lt. Gen. Min Naung on May 2 about the meeting.