Karenni State Govt to Consider Removal of Gen Aung San Statue

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Members of the government have requested ‘more time.’

By MAW OO MYAR / KANTARAWADDY TIMES

A meeting between representatives of the Karenni State government and youth activists in Loikaw on Tuesday regarding a divisive statue of Gen Aung San did not lead to a clear solution, locals said.

According to members of the statue “boycott committee,” another meeting will be held on May 14.

“The

[state’s]

chief minister told us that he would focus on the issue of removing the Gen Aung San statue in the next meeting. He requested for more time. We agreed to give him a week,” Khu Ree Reh, a committee spokesperson, told Kantarawaddy Times. “If we cannot complete the discussion in the meeting on May 14, we decide to meet again on 30 May 30.”

Representatives of the National Reconciliation and Peace Center (NRPC), the Karenni National Progressive Party (KNPP), the Karenni State government and Karenni youth were in attendance in the meeting on Tuesday.

The NRPC and KNPP representatives left the meeting delivering opening speeches, with others continuing the discussion.

“I am not satisfied with this meeting because representatives of the NRPC left the meeting room this morning without notifying us. They left us at the middle of the road,” Khu Ree Reh said. “They look like they are coming to solve this problem but then leave,” he added, saying that the move made him feel that they “don’t respect us.”

MPs, religious leaders, elders and representatives of political parties observed the meeting on Tuesday.

“We expect the best. I want the problem to be solved in a peaceful way,” KNPP vice chairperson Khu Oo Reh told Kantarawaddy Times.

U Zaw Htay, a member of the NRPC, told Kantarawaddy Times that time is needed for negotiation.

“We are not trying to look for criminals, but to seek solutions,” he said. “We need time for discussion and negotiation. The youth will also need time. My suggestion is not to delay the meeting. In my opinion, we have to avoid confrontation.”

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