U Aung Kyaw Zaw, a son of the late Thirty Comrades Gen Kyaw Zaw and regarded as an authority on Sino-Burmese affairs, said yesterday China’s participation in Burma’s peace process should be welcomed.

“It is necessary because things are happening on its border,” he said in response to SHAN correspondent’s question. “Similarly, participation by other countries is also importment.”

According to him, more heavy fighting would have ensued before the monsoons had China chosen to stand by. “But we need to be smart in dealing with it,” he commented. “It’s been years it has made use of our relationship to its advantage. It’s time to do the same thing with it. Only then we can bring about firm guarantees (to lasting peace in the country).”

Like the Kachin Independence Organization (KIO), he had not attached any blame to China for the postponement of the planned 6 April meeting between it and Naypyitaw in the Kachin state capital Myitkyina. Apart from the two, the KIO’s allies as well as international observers including the UN, China, the United States and the United Kingdom were expected to join it. “There are both pros and cons to having more stakeholders,” he said. “The pro is that it will bring positive legitimacy to the talks. But the con is that it will be more difficult to reach agreement. That was why the 6 April meeting was postponed.”

13 Kachin NGOs last week issued a statement that the planned 6 April peace talks was postponed due to China’s opposition to the inclusion of UN, US and UK officials.

On the other hand, he had few good words to say about the role of the members of parliament, the military and the Myanmar Peace Center (MPC):

The parliament is indecisive and biased. It is not taking a positive stand both for the people and the ethnic nationalities

As for the National Defense and Security Council (NDSC) and the military, it is plain as day. They have never issued instructions for peace. After February, the military has ordered there be no withdrawal from positions occupied during the offensive but to further fortify them

As for the MPC, the people there don’t understand the ethnic nationalities. Their job is to disseminate the government’s views. We need to have a center that maintains the right balance between the two sides

The KIO and Naypyitaw have met twice in China’s Ruili following the offensive in January. They were observed by representatives from China, the United Nationalities Federal Council (UNFC), the 11 member alliance of which KIO is a member, the Restoration Council of Shan State (RCSS) and National Democratic Alliance Army (NDAA).

Link: http://bnionline.net/index.php/news/shan/15116-chinese-participation-in-peace-process-necessary-border-specialist.html