Moving forward after the 16th Congress


Challenges for the Karen National Union

The 16th Karen National Union Congress held between 14 March and 9 April 2017 further solidified the current Karen leadership’s grip on power and will hopefully see an end to divisions within the organisation. Since the 15th Congress and going back as far as 2012, when the KNU accepted peace overtures from the Thein Sein government, two competing factions have emerged within the organisation. These factions, the first led by Chairman General Mutu Sae Poe and the second by Vice-Chairperson Padoh Naw Zipporah Sein had sought to take control of the organisation, via participation in the peace process, to decide the Karen people’s future.

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