The leaders from United Wa State Party (UWSP) from Shan State Special Region No. 1 and National Democratic Alliance Army (NDAA) from Shan State Special Region No. 2 met State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi and Commander-in-Chief Min AungHlaing separately in Nay Pyi Taw on July 29.
State Counsellor Office Deputy Director General Zaw Htay told reporters that at this meeting, State Counsellor Suu Kyi explained the planned 21st Century Panglong Conference and ongoing peace talks and then the leaders of Wa and Mongla groups explained their cooperation in the peace process and also said that they welcomed and supported the 21st Century Panglong Conference.
“The special regions 1 and 2 explained their consistent stand on peace and their cooperation in this work. And then both organizations expressed their welcome for the 21st Century Panglong Conference and their support for it. They will continue discussions on how to join and cooperate in this conference with the Peace Commission tomorrow (Saturday),” he said.
“The meeting today is the first important step for peace and national reconciliation. The State Counsellor conducted confidence building with them and their organizations for that purpose. We can say it is very positive step,” he added.
For joining the 21st Century Panglong Conference, UWSP leaders will meet the conference preparatory committee led by Dr. Tin Myo Win on July 30 and the next day the Mongla group will meet with this committee too in Yangon, Zaw Htay told reporters.
He further said that participation in this peace conference by Wa and Mongla groups depended on the outcome of the bilateral meetings and negotiations with government but he is satisfied with the meeting as it was friendly and frankly.
“Each group will have talks with government and then the results will come out how they can join and participate in this 21st Century Panglong Conference. We must explore the solutions,” he said.
He added that the Wa and Mongla groups met Commander-in-Chief Senior General Min Aung Hlaing at Bayintnaung House in Nay Pyi Taw.
In addition, State Counsellor Suu Kyi had a question and answer session with 100 youths from Wa and Mongla groups in NayPyi Taw.
At this Q&A session, SuuKyi told the visiting youth that women and young people were important for the future and she hoped that the youth would participate energetically in work for peace and she urged them to emphasize education for the future and build friendship with other youth by visiting other places in the union.