MYANMAR - Myanmar's ethnic groups called yesterday for Nobel Laureate Aung San Suu Kyi to play a significant role in their peace talks with the Myanmar government, saying the current truce seems to be yielding few benefits.
President Thein Sein, Aung San Suu Kyi and leaders of all ethnic groups should sit together with open minds to talk about the future of ethnic minorities, said Timothy Laklem, executive of the Karen National Liberation Army (KNLA) Peace Council.
The Karen peace council reached an initial truce with the Myanmar government in last February, but many of its seven-point agreements have not yet been enforced, he said.
"If peace talks are conducted like playing games, the people will end up with all the worst results," Laklem said in an interview.
One point the Karen agreed was important was that: "the state will allow and render assistance for … quickly fulfilling the basic needs, education, health, transport, water and electricity supply in the area for resettlement of the national race residing in another country, and [help it] to become self reliant."
"In the months since then, nothing really has happened," Laklem said, "This really matters for us. Peace talk is not about us, the peace council, but about the people. If they get nothing from the truce, the peace talk is useless."
Since the current regime took power last year, the Myanmar government has reached peace agreements with 11 ethnic groups which had taken up weapons against it for decades.
There are three steps for peace talks.