Another ethnic armed group has joined the rebel camp after pulling out of peace talks with Myanmar’s junta government. Their name is Pa-O National Liberation Organization (PNLO). Myanmar media Irrawaddy reported this information.
The PNLO is also fighting in Myanmar’s northeastern state of Shan. They formally withdrew from the junta’s peace talks last Friday. The group’s fighters then said they would now join the ongoing anti-junta fight with three other rebel groups. They also want democracy in Myanmar.
In a statement, PNLO said, we have been with peace talks for 8 years. I was hopeful that a political solution would come. But we understand, that possibility is no more.
Describing the current struggle as a struggle between the oppressors and the oppressed, the PNL also said that the entire country today is under the oppression of dictatorship. We have to get rid of it.
Meanwhile, PNLO fighters have started an armed struggle against the junta government’s army in Shan State.
In 2015, the PNLO signed a ceasefire agreement with the then junta government. Later in 2021, Aung San Suu Kyi’s elected government was overthrown and a new junta came to power, but the PNL also maintained its ceasefire and continued peace talks. But in the end, as the desired goal was not achieved, they announced to withdraw from the peace talks last Friday.
Since October last year, three rebel groups in northern Myanmar—Myanmar National Democratic Alliance Army (MNDAA), Ta’ang National Liberation Army (TNLA) and Arakan Army (AA)—started a joint fight against the junta forces. Now PNL also joined them.