KNU Leader Meets Burmese Intel Official
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KNU Leader Meets Burmese Intel Official

By Shah Paung Monday, July 17, 2006


Ailing Karen National Union leader Gen Bo Mya met Burmese intelligence official Col Myat Htun Oo on Saturday, according to sources along the Thai-Burmese border.

The meeting is said to have been arranged by Col Ner Dah Mya, son of Bo Mya, and lasted only a few minutes.

Bo Mya, 79, who suffers from severe diabetes is said to have been compelled to attend the meeting with Myat Htun Oo by his son, according to sources along the border. Ner Dah Mya was unavailable for comment on Monday.

KNU Executive Committee members and other group leaders were unaware of Saturday’s meeting, said David Taw, head of KNU’s foreign affairs department.

Ner Dah Mya met Burmese government officials at the Burmese embassy in Bangkok on June 28 and is said to have received 300,000 baht (about US $8,000) to pay for travel by Bo Mya to Rangoon, where he has been offered medical treatment.

Junta officials also sent a medical team, led by Dr Simon Thar—a Rangoon-based physician—to prepare Bo Mya for travel. However, the offer was subsequently refused.

Sources along the border say that junta overtures to Bo Mya began the delivery of a letter from the KNU suggesting that the armed ethnic opposition group may be willing to surrender to Rangoon. KNU leaders claim no knowledge of such a letter, according to David Taw, and will attempt to determine who might have sent it.

In 2004, a delegation from the KNU—led by Bo Mya—visited Rangoon for ceasefire talks. No formal ceasefire was reached, but both sides confirmed a gentleman’s agreement to end hostilities. The Burmese military, however, has continued to target Karen villages in contravention of the agreement.

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