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The United Nationalities Federal Council (UNFC) will hold off from sitting down with the government’s Union-level Peace Making Work Committee until next year.
According to a UNFC spokesperson, the group still needs more time to prepare, while government negotiators are currently occupied with addressing the ongoing fallout caused by the assault on protesters at the Latpadaung Copper Mine in late November.
“It seems that U Aung Min has been in a tight corner with public protests regarding the Latpadaung situation and we have been busy here too,” said UNFC spokesperson Nai Hongsa.
The two sides have discussed holding their next round of talks in Cambodia and later talks in Japan, which would be sponsored by the Nippon Foundation.
The UNFC’s spokesperson Nai Hongsa told DVB the group proposed the idea to the President’s Office Minister Aung Min, while he was visiting Thailand in November. However, the minister insisted on holding the talks in Burma.
“U Aung Min said it won’t be very convenient [for the government] to hold talks outside of the country and suggested we go inside the country instead,” said Nai Hongsa.
The UNFC and Aung Min’s peace negotiators have held previous talks that were mediated by Japan’s Nippon Foundation, but have yet to engage in formal talks.
The group consists of 11 ethnic armed groups including the Karen National Union, New Mon State Party, Kachin Independence Organisation, Karenni National Progressive Party and the Chin National Front.