Women's League of Burma (WLB) calls for U Thein Sein Government to implement a nation-wide ceasefire, which was announced officially in August 2011, and urges all parties to work together towards genuine and long-lasting peace in Burma.
U Thein Sein's government formed a peace committee, and the committee has met with ethnic armed groups and signed ceasefire agreements. WLB is concerned if the intention to enter ceasefire agreement is genuine as the agreements could be broken anytime if it is not genuine.
The desire of all ethnic nationalities including Kachin, Chin and Shan has been to form a federal union based on the Panglong Agreement where they can exercise self- determination.
In Burma, Union Day's celebrations are annually held with no political essence. Without a true spirit and practice of a union, these celebrations are meaningless, and there will be unresolved political settlement. The renewed fighting with Kachin Independence Army has proved that the ceasefire agreement can be only temporary.
We believe that it is a crucial time among all parties to build mutual trust, and for U Thein Sein Government to respect the desire of all ethnic nationalities toward genuine peace.
The civil war has been going on for more than sixty years, and the successive regimes have spent the excessive expenditure on military instead of allocating the national revenue for social and economic development for the people. Consequently, the people in Burma and children have been suffered from all kinds of extreme hardships.
Women and children, in particular, are the impact of the war, and often are victims of human rights abuses. Therefore, it is essential that women's participation at every level of the peace process so that their concerns and voices are in the discussion.
WLB strongly encourages all parties to include women's representatives in all peace dialogues.
We call upon U Thein Sein Government and Burma's Army (Tatmadaw), all democracy groups, ethnic armed groups (both ceasefire and semi-ceasefire) work together towards genuine and long-lasting peace and reconciliation in Burma.