Five leaders of the Hynniewtrep National Liberation Council (HNLC) have arrived in Meghalaya for peace talks with the government.
This was confirmed by the outfit’s representative and president of the Hynniewtrep National Youth Front (HNYF) Sadon K Blah on Thursday.
“The five leaders of the HNLC arrived in the state on August 5, and are stationed at the MeECL IB, at Sumer. This is one step of the process for the peace talks to start between the outfit and the government,” Blah said.
He said that the leaders informally met the government interlocutor PS Dkhar soon after their arrival.
On August 2, the HNLC leadership authorized its vice chairman and foreign secretary to participate in the ongoing tripartite peace talks between the Government of India, the Government of Meghalaya and the outfit.
"HNLC has authorised its Vice Chairman @Manbhalang Jyrwa, Political Secretary @Aristerwell Thongni, and Foreign secretary @Phrangkupar Diengdoh including two of their PSO(Personal Security officers)@Aiborlem Marbaniang and @Storgy Lyngdoh to participate in the ongoing Tripartite Peace talks between the Govt of India, Government of Meghalaya and the HNLC," outfit general secretary cum information secretary Sainkupar Nongtraw had stated in a statement.
This was also after the central and state governments in July had granted a ‘safe passage’ to allow leaders of the banned Khasi rebel outfit to come to the negotiating table for speeding up the peace process.
Blah said, “Now, it is the next phase of the groundwork and it depends on the government to decide on the official talks so that we can move forward with it. The date is yet to be fixed by them.”
“To start the official talks, it will depend on the three parties, as to when they are ready. If the outfit is ready I will convey the message to the government and from the government to them accordingly,” he added.
He said there is no delay as far as the process is concerned but the government has granted the safe passage and is providing security to all the leaders of the HNLC.