NNN | DIMAPUR, JULY 17: While condemning the killing of 6 NSCN-IM cadres by the security forces on July 11 near Nginu village in Arunachal Pradesh, the Naga Hoho and the Naga Mothers’ Association (NMA) “fervently” appealed to all “warring groups” to exhibit the utmost care and respect even to enemies on humanitarian ground and to uphold the laws as enshrined in the Geneva Conventions of 1949 pertaining to treatment of dead bodies. The Naga Hoho and the Naga Mothers’ Association then alleged that the six NSCN-IM cadres were killed while they were sleeping in a hut.
“This act is a blot on the sincerity and accountability of India to peace and demonstrates how it has not understood and recognized the political basis of the peace talks with the Naga groups,” a joint press statement of the Naga Hoho and the Naga Mothers’ Association said. It further said that the existence of Ceasefire in the “Naga areas” has lost its relevance if the security forces continue to perpetuate violence and killings. “The Government of India must come out with clarity pertaining to the coverage of Ceasefire without further procrastination,” the two organisations demanded.
“While we mourn the lives of the “young Naga heroes, we wish to express our deep appreciation to the Government of Nagaland, the Home Minister in particular, for clearance of movement permit for their last journey home and for facilitating the return of the dead bodies to be buried in our land as per our request,” the Naga Hoho and the Naga Mothers’ Association said, adding, “We also thank the Government of Manipur for the same”. The Naga Hoho and the Naga Mothers’ Association also thanked the Chairman of the Ceasefire Monitoring Group (CFMG) for his cooperation, guidance, and assistance. They also thanked the officials in Longding district administration and police of Arunachal Pradesh who assisted in “our work”. They also expressed their gratitude to the many individuals and organizations “who filled up the gaps to ensure that our boys return home; Naga Students’ Federation (NSF), Eastern Nagaland People Organisation (ENPO), Dimapur Naga Students’ Union (DNSU), Kuki Inpi, United Naga Council (UNC), Naga Women Union (NWU), All Naga Students’ Association Manipur (ANSAM), Tangkhul Naga Long (TNL), and Tangkhul Union Dimapur (TUD)”. The joint statement then added, “We owe to people in Arunachal, Assam, the civil society and activists who stood with us. We are also indebted to the Naga Council Dimapur for preparing the burial place at Old Naga Cemetery”. The Naga Hoho and the Naga Mothers’ Association also thanked “Naga men and women”, families, churches who “ceaselessly” prayed during these “critical days despite the odds against us”.
The joint press statement then said they have also experienced hardship one after another while striving to bring back the “slain mortal remains as various agencies tried to sabotage the handing over of dead bodies to the families and nearly buried the mortal remains midway”.
According to the Naga Hoho and the Naga Mothers’ Association, these five days of solidarity and support are a testimony that the “Nagas even in our brokenness remain steadfast to our collective history and future”. The statement then added, “May we continue to repair broken relationships and walk towards healing and a common destiny”. The Naga Hoho and the Naga Mothers’ Association then sent their “deepest” condolences to the families of “our beloved sons” Somaya Shatsang, Ashak Wangsha, Somipam Shaiza, Sawang Pansa, Lentsuba Lalii and Paogouhao Lhangum. “May their souls rest in peace and in the embrace of our heavenly Father,” the statement added.