Suu Kyi calls for multi-party talks in Myanmar

Yangon, Dec 30 (IANS) Chairperson of Myanmar’s opposition National League for Democracy (NLD) Aung San Suu Kyi Tuesday called for multi-party talks to settle the country’s political issues, agreeing to a recent proposal to the parliament to hold six-party talks as soon as possible.

Suu Kyi, who is also chairperson of the lower house’s Committee of Rule of Law and Tranquillity, told a press conference at her party’s headquarters in Yangon that she was willing to take part in the talks if called, Xinhua reported.
The proposal was put forward by a parliamentary member of the ruling Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP) last month calling for six-party talks involving the president, the defence chief, Suu Kyi, the speakers of the lower and upper houses of the parliament and one ethnic representative.
The six-party talks, if convened, will be a follow-up of five-party talks held Oct 31 involving the government, parliament, political parties, the military and the Union Election Commission. Those talks produced no specific outcome.
Suu Kyi went on to underline that parliament has achieved certain things during its four-year term.
With regard to the upcoming 2015 general election, Suu Kyi said her party would decide whether it would take part in it or not when the election date is announced.
Meanwhile, the two-house parliament, in its last session in November, adopted a draft nationwide referendum law on whether the country’s constitution should be amended.
The nationwide referendum on the constitution is designated to be held in May next year before the general election take place at the end of October or the beginning of November as roughly set out by the Union Election Commission.
The result of the nationwide referendum will be applied in the next parliament that will be formed after the 2015 election which will be held under the existing 2008 constitution.
The NLD, established in September 1988, has a membership of 1.2 million now. In the 2012 by-elections, the party won 43 out of the 45 open parliamentary seats, 37 in the House of Representatives (lower house), four in the House of Nationalities (upper house) and two in the region or state parliament.