Myanmar parliament approves nationwide ceasefire accord

Nay Pyi Taw, Dec 8 (IANS) Myanmar’s Union Parliament on Tuesday approved the Nationwide Ceasefire Accord (NCA) signed between the government and eight ethnic armed groups in October.

Under the October 15 deal, the two sides agreed on some post-ceasefire steps for adherence by both sides and on the unfinished peace process which calls for inclusion of seven other non-ceasefire-signatory groups in the truce, Xinhua news agency reported.

The two sides were also set to draw up a political framework within 60 days after the formal NCA signing and start a political dialogue within 90 days.

Accordingly, the framework for political dialogue between the government and ethnic armed groups has been completed by a special drafting committee of the tripartite Union Peace Dialogue Joint Committee (UPDJC) which comprises representatives from the government, ethnic armed groups and political parties.

The draft framework for political dialogue is expected to be approved by the UPDJC on December 14 in accordance with the timeline of the ceasefire term and the first round of formal dialogue is scheduled to start before January 14, next year.

The peace process began in November 2013 when the government’s Union Peace Making Work Committee (UPWC) and ethnic armed groups’ National Cease fire Coordination Team (NCCT) met in Myitgyina, Kachin state’s capital, for the nationwide ceasefire talks.

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