The Chin State government will allow the Chin National Front (CNF) to deliver a speech at the upcoming 72nd Chin National Day Commemoration in Thantlang town in Chin State on Thursday.
Originally the CNF was only permitted to attend the event—not speak at it—but following an official letter from the organization to State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi, the CNF was informed that they could give a speech at the national day celebration.
“We requested to deliver a speech but the Chin Stat government rejected our request. It was a policy from above. We told them we would not attend the commemoration,” Dr. Shur Hkur, the CNF’s Secretary 1, told Khonumthung News.
He added that town elders from Thantlang went to speak with state government representatives, asking them to reconsider, but the request for the CNF to speak was still rejected.
“We wanted to know the policy. We sent an official letter to the State Counsellor. She replied that it was not their policy—there was no restrictive policy. Finally, we got permission,” Dr. Shur Hkur explained.
Dr. Lian H. Sakhong, who is Vice Chairperson 2 of the CNF, will deliver the speech in Thantlang and Dr. Shur Hkur will also attend the commemoration, Chin State government spokesperson Soe Htet told Khonumthung News.
Previous regimes in Burma only permitted the Chin people to hold “Chin State Day” rather than Chin National Day on February 20. The CNF advocated for permission to call the event Chin National Day.
The CNF signed both state and Union-level ceasefire agreements in 2012 with Burma’s previous government headed by Thein Sein. Chin National Day has been publicly acknowledged since 2013.
The CNF is also signatory to the Nationwide Ceasefire Agreement with the government and military.