Date : April 16, 2015
FPCJ Press Conference on the Peace in Myanmar between the Government and Ethnic Minority Groups, and Japan’s Assistance (April 16, 2015)
post date : 2015.04.17
Since August 2011, the Myanmar government has been engaged in peace negotiations with 16 ethnic armed groups in the country, with negotiations leading to the signing of a National Ceasefire Agreement, possibly this April. The Japanese government, based on the perspective that the national reconciliation is necessary for stability and sustainable development in Myanmar, has supported the peace process between the Government of Myanmar and ethnic minorities under the policy of “Proactive Contribution to Peace” based on the principle of international cooperation.
In light of these events, H.E. U Aung Min, Minister for President Office of the Republic of the Union of Myanmar, a senior minister who has played a central role in the peace process, visited Japan from April 14 to 17, and reported the contribution of Japan’s assistance and the current situation to Japanese government officials.
The FPCJ has invited Minister for President Office H.E. U Aung Min and Mr. Yohei Sasakawa, Special Envoy of the Government of Japan for National Reconciliation in Myanmar, to discuss the state of the peace process in Myanmar and Japanese assistance and contributions.
On behalf of the Japanese government, Mr. Sasakawa congratulated the Myanmar government and ethnic minorities for their agreement. After introducing Japan’s support for peace building in Myanmar, including debt forgiveness, promotion of dialogues among the parties concerned and humanitarian assistance in the areas affected by conflict, he also mentioned his expectation that the agreement would mark a huge step toward peace.
H.E. U Aung Min said that his country was in a transition period from an old system to a new one, from a centrally-controlled system to a democracy, and that peace was a key to establishing democracy. He explained the current situation with peace building, emphasizing his government’s stance to seek political solutions. After he expressed his gratitude for the support of Mr. Sasakawa, and the Japanese government and people, he reaffirmed his commitment to further progress, and called for Japan’s future assistance.
A total of 27 people attended this press conference, including 13 journalists from Japan, China, France, Singapore and the UK, and eight embassy representatives. In the Q&A session, some of the questions asked were regarding allegations of past violations of human rights, security issues between Myanmar and China, and power relationships between the current administration and the armed forces.
*The following is a video report of the press conference (Japanese/Myanmar only).
H.E. U Aung Min, Minister for President Office of the Republic of the Union of Myanmar
Mr. Yohei Sasakawa, Special Envoy of the Government of Japan for National Reconciliation in Myanmar