Feb 16, 2011

Nagalim: Army Supports Peaceful Solution, says NSCN-IM

Nagalim representative V.S Atem of the NSCN-IM held a speech at the UNPO Anniversary in The Hague held on February 10 and 11 where he stated that even the General Staff of the Indian Army now realizes that only peaceful cooperation can bring a lasting solution for Nagalim.

Below is an article published by E-PAO:

 The NSCN-IM while participating at the 20th anniversary of Unrepresented Nations People Organisation (UNPO) at The Hague in the Netherlands has said that the Indian Army Generals, including Chief of the Army Staff, having realized the futility of seeking solution through military might, declared that military solution was impossible as the Indo-Naga conflict is a political issue. 

The Naga outfit also informed the gathering at The Hague event that former Prime Minister of India late P.V Narasimha Rao was requested by the NSCN-IM leaders to meet "Khaplang group" and the NNC leaders but the Indian leader refused. 

Representing the NSCN-IM, V.S Atem of the NSCN-IM participated at the UNPO Anniversary at The Hague held on February 10 and 11 . 

Delivering his speech at the UNPO event, V.S Atem said, "I would like to brief you on the Indo-Naga peace process in the following way: Indian Army Generals, including Chief of the Army Staff, having realized the futility of seeking solution through military might, declared that military solution was impossible as the Indo-Naga conflict is a political issue. 

The speech of V.S Atem was made available to Newmai News Network by the NSCN-IM tonight. 

According to V.S.Atem, at the invitation of P.V.Narasimha Rao, the then Prime Minister of India, NSCN-IM general secretary Thuingaleng Muivah and its chairman Isak Chisi Swu met the Indian leader in Paris on June 12, 1995.During the meeting, the Prime Minister proposed political dialogue to resolve our political problems, he said. 

"In response, our Collective Leadership said to him—Okay, Mr.Prime Minister, why don't you talk with Khaplang group and NNC? We will not stand in the way, but we will not be a party to it," Atem mentions in his speech at the UNPO programme.

According to him, P.V Narasimha Rao replied, "Why should I talk with them? The issue is not with them. The issue is with you. The people are with you, and so if we talk with you, we believe solution can be worked out. I will not talk with others. I know who they are. They are in my hands."

Then the NSCN-IM leaders told him: "It seems there are two Prime Ministers in India." According to V.S Atem, Rao replied saying, "I know who is who; I will not allow anyone to stand in the way. I will deal with the issue by myself". "So our Collective Leadership accepted his proposal to initiate the peace process". 

V.S Atem then said that the Indian negotiators and the National Socialist Council of Nagalim (NSCN) arrived at a basic agreement on November 17, 1996 – unconditional talks, talks at the highest level which is at the Prime Ministerial level and talks outside India. 

On July 25, 1997, the President of the Republic of Nagalim announced in the UNPO Secretariat, the Hague that the Ceasefire between the Government of India and the National Socialist Council of Nagalim will be effective from August 1, 1997. 

It was also agreed that the ceasefire agreement is between the government of India and the NSCN as two entities without territorial limits (joint statement on June 14, 2001), the NSCN-IM leader told the gathering. 

Atem also said that in its 3rd Naga consultation Meeting, from May 6 – 10, 2002, 73 Naga delegates representing Naga Hoho, the Churches and mass-based civil society organizations solemnly declared that they fully support the ongoing political negotiation between the Govt of India and the NSCN-IM. 

"In its 4th Naga people's consultation to strengthen the Indo-Naga political talks, from January 20-21, 2005, Naga people and their civil society organizations covering across the length and breadth of Naga Homeland reaffirmed declared their fullest support for an honorable and acceptable solution to the Indo-Naga political issue on the basis of the uniqueness of Naga history and situation. 

Govt of India has agreed and recognized officially the unique history and situation of the Nagas. Congress–led coalition Govt has officially given its commitment: "There must be solution through peaceful means and that solution must be honorable and acceptable to both", V.S Atem said. 

As the NSCN has rejected any approach from the Indian constitutional perspective, the Prime Minister of India gave the commitment: "We have to work out the solution from outside the box". 

It is now more than 13 years since we have been negotiating with the Government of India. 

Solution could be worked out basing only on the historical facts and political rights of the Nagas, the NSCN-IM leader said at The Hague event. 

"If both the parties could go by the commitment of the Indian Prime Minister, solution may not be far off though it has taken a long time. The greatest question now lies in how far Indian leadership could be sincere in their commitment. The Naga people are still committed to peaceful solution if that could be honorable," V.S Atem concludes his speech.