The Palaung State Liberation Front (PSLF) confirmed that they will be meeting with the Myanmar government’s Union Peace-making Work Committee for the first time when the two parties get together in Muse in northern Shan State on July 31 for talks, according to Mine Bhone Kyaw, the PSLF general-secretary.
He told Mizzima that negotiations will focus on the current military situation and political affairs.
“Hostilities between both the PSLF and the Myanmar army are ongoing,” he said. “At the meeting we intend to speak about ways to decrease the conflict and the matter of political dialogue as per the agenda that the UNFC [United Nationalities Federal Council] submitted.”
Mine Bhone Kyaw said that government forces are extended in Kuk Khine, Namt San and Man Tone districts of northern Shan State close to the PSLF base.
The two sides held a joint drug-burning ceremony on July 25 at Kan Par Pho Village in Kuk Khine Township.
Peace broker Hla Maung Shwe said that an increase in “endurance and faith” is necessary if the sides are to find a solution to the military conflict.
“We know that the battles won’t stop just because we sign a ceasefire agreement,” he told Mizzima. “We need to be extremely patient and build faith benevolently along with endurance.”
The majority of Myanmar’s ethnic armies have now agreed truces with the central government, notable exceptions being the PLSF and the Kachin Independence Organization (KIO).
The PSLF met with Aung Min, the vice-chairman of the Union Peace-making Work Committee in Chiang Mai, Thailand, in February 2012 but no further negotiations have taken place since.