Myanmar government, armed ethnic group reach accord

Yangon, May 19: The Myanmar government and an ethnic armed group Saturday reached an agreement during the second round of central level peace talks.

The peace-making group of Myanmar’s central government and a Shan ethnic armed group — the Restoration Council of Shan State (RCSS) of the Shan State Army-South (SSA-South) — reached a 12-point agreement in Kengtung town of Shan state, Xinhua reported.

The accord covered cooperation in drug eradication, economic undertakings, culture preservation and peace supervision group formation.

The peace-making group of the central government was led by General Soe Win, the vice chairman of the government’s newly- formed peace making group work committee. The RCSS of the SSA-South’s side was led by its chairman lieutenant-General Ywet Sit.

During the first central level talks in January, the two sides had reached an 11-point peace agreement which covered territory designation and the opening of economic and liaison offices.

Up to now, 12 ethnic armed groups have reached preliminary peace accords with the Myanmar government at state or central levels since President U Thein Sein offered peace talks with ethnic armed groups in August 2011.