Rangoon: Myanmar’s democracy leader Daw Aung San Suu Kyi has stated that Burman is just an ethnic nationality in the union of Burma. She said this in the ceremony of celebrating the 65th Union Day that was held by the six ethnic brotherhood parties in Rangoon, said U Hla Saw, the general secretary of the Rakhine Nationalities Development Party.
“Daw Aung San Suu Kyi has said she recognizes the role of ethnic nationalities, also saying she generally supports the genuine union that is demanded by the ethnic peoples for equal ethnic rights. The wonderful words she stated in the ceremony are that Burma is also an ethnic nationality in the union”, said U Hla Saw.
He said the union day celebration was held by the Nationality Brotherhood Forum that is founded by the six ethnic political parties for their political collaborations.
“What Daw Aung San Suu Kyi spoke about in the ceremony is the point that we must discuss among our ethnic forces as well. We have never heard Burma mentioned as an ethnic nationality though the other seven nationalities are being mentioned as ethnic nationalities in the political history of Burma”, said U Hla Saw.
He said Burma is never described as an ethnic nationality; while the other people living in different regions in the union of Burma are being called Karen ethnic, Rakhine ethnic, Kachin ethnic and so on.
U Hla Saw also said their ethnic political parties have collaborated and observed the union day in order to show their desire for a union that guarantees democracy and equal ethnic rights.
“Ethnic conflicts are the most important problems in our country and without democracy it will be difficult to solve those problems. At present, ethnic democratic parties are officially allowed to stand and the government has also agreed to ceasefires with the ethnic armed groups that are fighting for the ethnic rights. These are the constructive signs with respect to our union if we compare this to the eras of BSPP, SLORC or SPDC governments. As we hope for a more meaningful union that guarantees democracy and equal ethnic rights, we the ethnic parties have observed the union day collaboratively”, said U Hla Saw.
He said that a statement on the day was also jointly issued by the parties of the forum, and he read the statement to the attendees in the ceremony.
“I did not deliver any formal speech in the ceremony, but I gave the introductory speech spotlighting the present situations facing the ethnic regions before reading our parties’ statement on the union day”, he said.
According to their statement, Burma gained independence after all ethnic nationalities in the country agreed to build a union that guarantees democracy and equality of rights on this day, but the union that coined the independence since then has never existed until today and the ethnic states at present have become the poorest, the most backward, the most suppressed and the most war-torn regions in the false union.
The parties also urged the other forces of democracy in their statement to work together and strive for turning Burma into a genuine union in the present transitional period to democracy.
U Sai Nyaunt Lwin of the Shan National League for Democracy, who was recently released from prison, and other prominent politicians were also said to have attended the ceremony of the union day that was held collaboratively by the ethnic political parties.