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Naga groups commit to reconciliation

Members of the various Naga political groups, NGOs and the FNR pose outside Hotel Saramati, Dimapur for a photo call after their meeting, Wednesday. (NP)
Staff Reporter DIMAPUR, AUG 26 (NPN):
Published on 27 Aug. 2009 12:43 AM IST
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After Tuesday’s meeting of the Forum for Naga Reconciliation (FNR) in which signatories of three factions-NSCN(K), NSCN(I-M) and FGN- agreed to form a joint working group to expedite and facilitate the convening a meeting of top Naga political leaders at the earliest, a total of forty two tribal Hohos, NGOs along with representatives of the three underground groups made a commitment for reconciliation Wednesday at Hotel Saramati. A statement of commitment issued after the meeting read: the Naga people would urge and support the reconciliation process while at the same time applaud the political groups for demonstrating patience and restraint. The statement also asked the political groups to firmly take positive steps to make the reconciliation meeting at the highest level possible. The commitment also expressed for accomplishing the reconciliation process at the earliest and promised to work honestly towards it. Wednesday’s meeting was attended by many prominent Naga group leaders such as former president of NNC Panger Walling, general (Rtd) Keneselie of the FGN, president NNC (women wing) Ketenuo and younger brother of S S Khaplang, Johan from Myanmar. Kilonser, NSCN (K) Singson who spoke first, admitted that it had been initially difficult to digest the reconciliation issue but expressed satisfaction that things have changed a lot. Singson expressed the view that everyone should share the responsibility of bringing about reconciliation. Questioning the civil society, Singson asked, “What is your stand (on reconciliation) and where you are today”. He said the civil societies have also have a role in the process of reconciliation. Kilo Kilonser, FGN, Zaleo Sapo in his short speech expressed gratitude to the FNR and appreciated the other groups for openly coming forward. “We have covered a long way and together we can and we will succeed” he added. “Time has come for the Naga people to give more space to women” Gen (Rtd) V S Atem, emissary to the collective leadership, stated while appreciating the Naga Mothers Association for the efforts the reconciliation process. He also asserted that the NSCN (IM) would not enter into any sort of agreement with the government of India that went against the wishes of the Naga people and against the historical and political rights of the Naga people. At the same time, he also cautioned that the Naga people were good in talking and making speeches but poor when it comes to action. General (Rtd) Keneselie pointed out that reconciliation was attempted before but because of mistrust among the leaders it proved to be a failure. He stated that those who were afraid to take risk should better not waste their time in taking part in the reconciliation process. The retired general also asked how the reconciliation was supposed to be brought without knowing the causes of factionalism and history of the Naga independence movement. “Don’t confuse the past and present” he added. While former president of the NNC Panger Walling pointed out that if the groups search for a leader amongst themselves than independence was not possible. President, NNC (Women wing) Ketenuo urged the groups to forgive one another in the name of Christ and bring unity amongst themselves. She pointed out that it was easy to become as one but not when it came to the issue of leadership.

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