Chiang Mai (Mizzima) – The Burmese Mon National Democratic Front (MNDF) says it will wait until after U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s visit to Burma in December to decide whether it will re-register as a political party.
Officials said they wanted to see if more political changes and the release of political prisoners would take place.
“We will have doubts until it [the government] releases all the political prisoners. So, we will wait until after Hilary Clinton’s visit,” said MNDF General-Secretary Dr. Min Soe Lin.
“Khun Tun Oo and Sai Nyunt Lwin [ethnic leaders] have not been released from prisons. We cannot ignore that. We need to give attention not only to the [government’s] offensive actions against the Mon people, but also its offensive actions against others. We cooperate with them as a member of the United Nationalities League for Democracy [UNLD] andthe United Nationalities Alliance [UNA],” Dr. Min Soe Lin said.
On Sunday, more than 100 MNDF members attended a ceremony to reform the party held in Mawlamyine. In the meeting, the party will make a decision on December 22, when the party’s central committee will meet.
The MNDF has not made any comment on the NLD decision to re-register as a political party.
“The day after the NLD made its decision to re-register as a political party, President Thein Sein said there are no prisoners of conscience in Burma. That means he fails to recognize politicians,” Dr. Min Soe Lin said.
During its recent meeting, the party discussed combining with the All Mon Region Democracy Party in order to create a single Mon political party. Moreover, the MNDF reorganized its leadership and added more central committee members.
It replaced elderly party chairman Nai Tun Thein, 95, with Nai Ngwe Thein, 89. Nai Tun Thein was named an honorable patron of the MNDF.
According to the MNDF organization structure, there are 45 central committee members including 21 central executive committee members. At the ceremony, the MNDF added seven leaders including five retired leaders of the New Mon State Party to the vacant seven positions on the MNDF central executive committee.
The MNDF was formed on October 11, 1988. Nineteen MNDF candidates contested in the 1990 general elections and five won seats. The former junta refused to recognize the 1990 elections results. In 1991, a number of MNDF leaders were arrested and the former junta dissolved the party on March 19 [Mon State Day], 1992.
The MNDF is a member of the Committee Representing People's Parliament, the UNLD and the UNA.