The Burma/Myanmar Army has recently conveyed an official apology to the Restoration Council of Shan State / Shan State Army (RCSS/SSA) after a firefight broke out last week in Pongpakhem sub-township, opposite Chiangmai’s Chiangdao district between the two, according to RCSS/SSA leader Lt-Gen Yawdserk.
He did not say when the official apology was given. “Gen Soe Win (Deputy Commander in Chief of the Army Services and Commander in Chief of the Army) also said an order has been issued to all the regional commands in Shan State to cease hostilities against the SSA,” he added.
The said fight took place 4 days after the two sides declared there would be no more clashes between them on 19 May evening following the signing of a 12 point agreement in Kengtung, Shan State East capital.
On 23 May, Pongpakhem-based Infantry Battalion 65 reportedly dispatched a patrol to look for a deserter. The said patrol ran into its SSA counterpart resulting in an exchange of fire which fortunately did not inflict casualties on either side.
During the dinner party that was thrown after the signing of the third agreement, the two sides were also said to have exchanged email addresses and hotline numbers.
“Now it is time to launch our political consultations with the people in accordance with the agreement,” said Yawdserk.
Representatives will be sent to townships to hold meetings with the local people to ask what their opinions are on various political issues, particularly on how a lasting union should be formed.
According to the guidelines set by the President Thein Sein on 19 May, Naypyitaw is aiming at achieving the following objectives:
- To remain forever in the Union
- To accept the Three National Causes i.e. Non-disintegration of the Union, Non-disintegration of National Sovereignty and Perpetuation of National Sovereignty
- To cooperate in economic and development tasks legally
- To cooperate in the elimination of narcotic drugs
- To set up political parties and enter elections
- To accept the (2008) constitution and to make necessary amendments in the parliament by majority consent
- To fully enter the legal fold for permanent peace and live, move, work and consume in accord with the constitution
- To coordinate existence of only a single armed forces in accord with the constitution
The RCSS/SSA had made it clear that Naypyitaw could not expect any definite answers from it, except for cooperation in development and against drugs, without it first consulting the people.