"Concerning national reconciliation and internal peace,
what counts is for all participants to discuss on the basis of
what they can give rather than what they would like to take"
State Counsellor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi
[Global New Light of Myanmar: 25 May 2017]
State Counsellor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi opened a second round of talks with the country's many ethnic armed groups yesterday, looking to renew a quest for peace after a year in which fighting continued in some northern regions.
The Union Peace Conference-21st Century Panglong 2nd session that began yesterday came after a challenging year during which tensions between ethnic armed groups intensified. But the State Counsellor said she remained upbeat about the future.
"During the first year of our new government, we experienced many highs and lows, progression and regression", Daw Aung San Suu Kyi said yesterday in Nay Pyi Taw.
"But at today's conference, it can be said that our collective efforts have started to bear fruit."
One of the most positive signs came days before the conference began when it was reported that several ethnic groups that had recently clashed with government troops, and whose attendance had been in question, would be joining the negotiations.
Three previously excluded groups ... the Kokang, Ta'ang and Arakan armed ethnic groups .... are attending the Union Peace Conference for the first time as special guests.