NUPA Joins Arakan Army

Monday, December 14, 2020

The National Unity Party of Arakan/Arakan Army (NUPA/AA) has dissolved and its members have joined the United League of Arakan/Arakan Army (ULA/AA).

The NUPA released a statement on December 12 explaining the shift.  

“Some leaders have retired for health reasons. On November 11, 2020, we held a meeting in the border area and the remaining central committee members and ranking soldiers decided to dissolve the NUPA/AA. To continue our armed struggle for the national cause, we decided to join the ULA/AA,” the statement said.

The NUPA was dissolved on December 5, reportedly with the agreement of “99 percent” of central committee members.

The NUPA/AA grew out of the National Unity Front of Arakan (NUFA) in 1988. The NUFA was formed of the Arakan Independence Organization, Arakan Communist Party, Arakan National Liberation Party, Tribe National Party and the National Democratic Force Alliance. 

After establishment of the NUFA, Khaing Razar, the organization’s commander-in-chief, further merged with the All Arakan Student and Youth Congress. The NUFA was then transformed into the NUPA, with the Arakan Army as its armed wing.

Six top leaders of the NUPA including Khaing Razar were assassinated on the Andaman Islands on February 11, 1998. Another 34 soldiers from the organization were arrested by the Indian military.

The NUPA/AA’s political and military movement has since weakened and its leadership aging.

The move to join the ULA/AA is a step toward continuing the armed struggle for the Arakanese national cause, according to insiders.