Ethnic representatives from Pyithu Hluttaw left for China

U Pe Than ( photo by RFA)

U Pe Than ( photo by RFA)

( Yangon, 28 October 2013) : A five member delegates from Pyithu Hluttaw (The house), representing ethnic communities of Burma, have left Yangon for Beijing on Sunday. The team comprising representatives from Shan, Mon, Kachin and Arakan as well as NLD,  has been invited by the international relationship department of the Chinese foreign ministry.

Just before leaving from Yangon international airport at around 12 pm of 27 October, the Arakanese representative from Mraybon township, U Pe Than informed Narinjara over phone that they were ready for the weeklong tour to China.

“We are invited by the Chinese foreign ministry and hoping to meet a number of Chinese leaders to discuss on various issues relating to China and Burma. We are expecting to focus on several ongoing Chinese projects in our country,” added U Pe Than.

He hoped that the delegates would be able to express the grievances of common Arakanese people against the Chinese company engaged in the Shwe gas project.

“We have witnessed many difficulties faced by the local people of Arakan due to the Chinese company engaged Shwe project. Many residents have lost their farmlands and livelihoods after the project came to our State. We have lot of apprehensions against many other Chinese projects in our country including the China-Myanmar railway and deep seaport projects,” he reveled.

It is widely reported that though there are many Chinese projects presently going on in Arakan, the common Arakanese people remain poor and deprived of any benefit from those projects.

Various ethnic representatives from Burma start visiting China with the invitation from the Chinese government since the quasi-civilian government led by U Thein Sein came to power, but unfortunately none of them could present the grievances of Burmese people to the Chinese authority relating to their ongoing projects in Burma.

The visiting Burmese team, who are scheduled to cover Beijing and Kunming during the 7 day trip, are officially expected to discuss on many issues including the culture, parliamentary affairs,  democratic reform process of Burma and national peace initiatives of Burmese government with a number of ethnic armed outfits with the administrators of China.