Naga peace talks resume after 2 years
Kohima Former special director of Intelligence Bureau (IB) AK Mishra on Monday held talks with Isak-Muivah faction of National Socialist Council of Nagalim (NSCN-IM) to revive the Naga peace process that was stuck since October 2019 over the rebel group’s insistence on a separate Naga flag and constitution, people familiar with the developments said.
During the two-hour long meeting, the NSCN-IM stressed on the need to follow the 2015 Framework Agreement in letter and in spirit while a member of the outfit’s collective leadership Rh. Raising said that any solution without recognising the Naga flag and constitution would be unacceptable to both the rebel group and the Naga people, the people cited above added.
The former IB official and top NSCN(IM) leaders, led by the group’s general secretary Thuingaleng Muivah, arrived in Dimapur on Saturday to resume the peace talks which got delayed following a fallout between interlocutor RN Ravi and the NSCN (IM) in 2019.
It is learnt that around 25 top NSCN (IM) leaders sat with Mishra for the meeting on Monday.
The Centre has also directed Assam chief minister and North East Democratic Alliance convener Himanta Biswa Sarma to meet the negotiating parties. Sarma, who was earlier tasked by Union home minister Amit Shah to act as go-between along with Nagaland chief minister Neiphiu Rio when the relationship between Ravi and NSCN (IM) soured, is expected to arrive in Dimapur on Tuesday.
Rio already left for the Nagaland city from the state capital on Monday.
According to Raising, the NSCN (IM) has not held talks with politicians or political leaders but was ready to sit with them if they were assigned by the Centre.
On whether the NSCN (IM) was ready to sit across the table with other Naga insurgent groups for deliberation of a final settlement, the NSCN leader said there would be only “one solution” which would be inclusive and they could be a part of it.
On September 18, all lawmakers in Nagaland under chief minister Rio agreed to form an opposition-less government, the ‘United Democratic Alliance’, to facilitate a final solution to the Indo-Naga political issue, one that is “inclusive, honourable and acceptable” to all.
The move compounded expectations of an early solution to the issue. However, NSCN (IM) leaders believe that sealing the final peace deal would depend on the sincerity and commitment of both the Centre and Naga leaders.