of pursuing genuine reconciliation with the recognized leaders of
ethnic groups, the State Peace and Development Council continues
to engineer splits and factions in opposition groups.
In its latest move, on 11 February,
the SPDC announced in its own media a “peace” deal with
the newly formed splinter group Karen National Union/Karen National
Liberation Army Peace Council (KNU/KNLAPC) headed up by disaffected
former Karen National Union (KNU) Commander Htain Maung. The deal
has provided Htain Maung and his small band of followers with supplies
and televisions, but no promise of peace or the end of the military
violence which forced 27,000 people to leave their homes in 2006
in Eastern Burma.
Karen grassroots and civil society
organizations have responded to the attempt to cause division by
rallying around the KNU, confirming their place as the legitimate
leaders of the community.