Military Council Reiterates Position of No Dialogue with ‘Terrorist’ Groups

By Network Media Group
Saturday, August 26, 2023

Burma’s ruling State Administration Council (SAC) recently stated that if the National Unity Government (NUG), the Committee Representing Parliament Hluttaw (CRPH), and the People’s Defense Forces (PDFs) officially announce a cessation of terrorist activities, they will engage in dialogue with these groups. However, it is highly unlikely that this will ever occur.

SAC spokesperson Maj-Gen Zaw Min Tun said at a 22 August press conference, “In order to initiate dialogue, these organisations or individuals must first officially declare an end of all their terrorist activities. Secondly, they must globally announce their condemnation of terrorist activities.”

He added, “We have no intention of holding dialogue with terrorist groups. We will persist in peace talks with ethnic armed organisations to restore peace and stability in the country. We will also continue discussions with political parties in preparation for the upcoming general elections.”

The Burma army staged a military coup in the country on 1 February 2021, citing alleged election fraud in the 2020 general election, in which Daw Aung San Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy (NLD) secured a landslide victory, but the army failed to present substantial evidence to support this accusation.

Following the military coup, elected MPs from the NLD party, victorious in the 2020 general elections, established the CRPH five days after the coup, and NUG was formed on 16 April that year, while many PDFs were formed on 5 May. Three days later, the SAC officially designated all three as terrorist groups.