Imphal, May 1, 2019:
The Indian army and Nationalist Socialist Council of Nagalim (Isaak Muivah) have been engaged in a standoff for the past several days. The Army has said that the NSCN (IM) had occupied a temporary camp in Sihai Village about 5 Km from Khamasom near the Indo-Myanmar Border in Ukhrul district of Manipur.
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The setting up an unauthorized camp in violation of Ceasefire Ground Rules and against the spirit of the ongoing Ceasefire Agreement resulted in great inconvenience to the locals residing in the adjacent areas, the Indian Army pointed out.
As per a statement released by the Indian Army, the NSCN (IM) leadership was given a reasonable time to vacate the camp, which they failed to do.
“The attempt by the Group to push the Security Forces to use force was responded with great restraint thereby ensuring that the issue did not escalate further and 21 long years of negotiations were not allowed to go waste”, read the Army’s statement.
This assumes importance as the Government has worked extremely hard to settle the issue once and for all and it has been reported that the two are at the threshold of inking a deal.
The setting of an unauthorised camp in violation of ground rules agreed upon is most unfortunate and almost betrays the hopes of Naga people for the final accord anytime soon.
“In fact, in the spirit of maintaining the momentum in negotiations achieved after signing of the Framework Agreement, the Security Forces have been extremely careful not to escalate in spite of provocation from NSCN (IM) and approached the Chairman CFMG though he has no mandate beyond Nagaland. Using the good offices of Chairman CFMG and civil society organizations, it was ensured that the camp is vacated by NSCN (IM) in conformity with the Ceasefire Ground Rules”, the Army said.
The Army further stated that the NSCN (IM) is advised to follow Ceasefire Ground Rules in letter and spirit and not take actions that will jeopardize the final agreement and disrupt the normal life of common citizens.