The National Socialist Council of Nagaland – Khaplang (NSCN-K) will not sign the nationwide ceasefire agreement (NCA) because of political issues within its group, said NSCN-K central committee member U Kyaw Wan Sein.

In an interview with IMNA he said: “We have already discussed the topic with our chairman. The chairman said we weren’t ready to sign the NCA yet. There are some political issues in our group [and] we cannot find a solution to them by just signing the NCA and the government cannot solve this problem either. So, we decided not to sign the NCA.”

But, U Kyaw Wan Sein would not elaborate on the group’s political problems.

The decision not to sign the NCA was made by the NSCN-K at a conference held at its headquarters on 21 September. Among those attending were the NSCN-K chairman S.S. Khaplang and other central committee members.

The government has invited 15 ethnic armed organisations (EAOs), including the NSCN-K, to sign the NCA. However, there are other EAOs that the government has not invited to sign the NCA. These include: the Myanmar National Democratic Alliance Army – Kokang (MNDAA), the Ta’ang National Liberation Army (TNLA) and the Arkan Army (AA).

U Kyaw Wan Sein said: “It’s not because all ethnic groups have not been invited to sign the NCA that we will not sign the NCA, but, every group has its own objectives. Not signing the NCA does not mean that we will revolt against the Burmese Government. The government cannot help solve our problems so we will not sign the NCA.”

According to U Kyaw Wan Sein the government told the NSCN-K that if they do not participate in the NCA signing the group will be added to the list of unlawful groups when both sides met at the Myanmar Peace Centre (MPC) on 16 September.

U Aung Min, the vice-chairman of the government’s ceasefire negotiating team the Union Peace-Making Work Committee (UPWC), has already announced to media organisations that the NCA will be signed in October.

The NSCN-K has already signed a preliminary state-level bilateral ceasefire agreement with the government on 9 April 2012.