Nagas angry as Myanmar military hits rebel groups

The Naga Hoho, which is Nagaland’s apex tribal organisation, urged Indian and Myanmar armies for immediate cessation of the military action “against the Nagas”. 

Published: 20th May 2019 07:44 PM  |   Last Updated: 21st May 2019 08:22 AM   |  A+A-

Indian Army, Line of Control, LoC, Border, War

For representational purposes (File Photo | PTI)

Express News Service

GUWAHATI: The ongoing military operations in Myanmar against rebel groups from India’s Northeast, including the Yung Aung faction of National Socialist Council of Nagaland-Khaplang (NSCN-K), have triggered outrage in Nagaland. 

As the Naga civilian population of Myanmar is caught in the conflict, several tribal organisations in Nagaland have appealed to Myanmar government to end the “hostilities”. They say the offensive is coordinated by Indian security forces.

The Naga Hoho, which is Nagaland’s apex tribal organisation, urged Indian and Myanmar armies for immediate cessation of the military action “against the Nagas”. 

“…We are compelled to remind both governments that history has demonstrated that Nagas are courageous and bold enough to stand firm even in the face of overwhelming adversity. It has been also time and again proved that the Naga issue could not be tackled militarily since it is a political issue,” the Naga Hoho said in a statement. 

It warned that the military action has the potential to result in a widespread “Naga uprising”, a “conflagration” which should be avoided.

“The Nagas, irrespective of border or factions, will not be mute spectators when their rights are so mindlessly trampled upon and will collectively do everything in their power to protect our land and the lives of our own blood,” the organisation warned.

It urged the United Nations and the Myanmar government to take measures to broker peace through dialogues.

Another group, Forum for Naga Reconciliation, said it was disturbed with the situation of armed confrontation which resulted in the suffering of innocent civilians and destruction of property in Naga villages in “Naga Self-Administered Zone”.

It insisted that the armed confrontation and alleged torture, harassment of people and destruction of property in civilian-inhabited areas must be avoided and that Myanmar Army and NSCN-K work to honour the regional-level ceasefire that was signed in April 2012.

Condemning the operations, the NSCN’s Isak-Muivah faction, called NSCN-IM, said there should be a better way to handle the issue.

“The chaotic situation, thus created by the blatant offensive of the Tatmadaw (Myanmar Army), has destabilized the livelihood of Naga villagers as the Naga people are made to bear the brunt of the Tatmadaw onslaught…” the outfit, which is spearheading the Naga peace talks with the Centre, said.

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