In the last year, Burma's government has initiated ceasefire negotiations with many of the country's armed ethnic groups. To date, the government's Peace Negotiation Team led by U Aung Min has signed preliminary agreements with 10 groups. However, ongoing militarization, use of land mines, human rights abuses, and armed clashes threaten these fragile ceasefires.
Despite this tenuous situation, the international community has begun planning and implementing a range of peace fund initiatives, including Norway's Myanmar Peace Support Initiative and the World Bank's Community Driven Development Program using its State and Peace-Building Fund. Norway and the World Bank have also joined the European Union, United Kingdom, the United Nations and Australia to form the Peace Donor Support Group with the objective of catalyzing peace-building and development.
Burma's ethnic community and civil society organizations are concerned that these peace funds have the potential to undermine a comprehensive nationwide peace process and engender more harm to local communities than good. They will be releasing a set of collective recommendations for donors.
This panel discussion will look at the possible impacts of peace funds on local communities and the prospect of nationwide peace, as well as other country examples that provide valuable lessons for Burma.
Speakers will be:
• Paul Sein Twa (Karen Environmental Social Action Network)
• Khin Ohmar (Burma Partnership)
• Tin Tin Nyo (Women's League of Burma)
• Shalmali Guttal (Focus on the Global South)
Foreign Correspondents' Club of
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Patumwan, Bangkok 10330
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