Long-running disputes between Myanmar’s governments and the country’s ethnic minority peoples are a messy knot of politics, culture, economics and law. To disentangle this knot requires understanding of the nature of political power and legal authority in Myanmar. To explore why political forces are so overwhelmingly important to the understanding of Myanmar’s legal environment, this chapter examines the recent history of war between the Myanmar government and the Kachin Independence Army/Organisation (KIA/O). The war that is described here commenced on 9 June 2011 with the breakdown of a 17-year ceasefire between the two sides. It was an often brutal conflict across the mountains and valleys of northern Myanmar. A new and tentative ceasefire was agreed in May 2013, followed by rounds of further negotiation. The current cessation of hostilities – as hesitant and incomplete as it remains in late 2013 – further illustrates the convoluted character of conflict resolution in situations of prolonged inter-ethnic war and mistrust.
|Title of host publication
|Law, Society and Transition in Myanmar
|Melissa Crouch, Tim Lindsey
|Place of Publication
|Oxford, UK and Portland, OR, USA
|Published - 2014