ASEAN special envoy making 2nd visit to strife-torn Myanmar

Jun 28, 2022, 9:14 PM | Updated: Jun 29, 2022, 6:07 pm

FILE - Cambodian Foreign Minister Prak Sokhonn holds a press conference after the Association of So...

FILE - Cambodian Foreign Minister Prak Sokhonn holds a press conference after the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) session of ASEAN foreign ministers' retreat in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, on Feb. 17, 2022. Cambodia’s foreign minister arrived in Myanmar on Wednesday, June 29, on his second visit as a special envoy of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations to the country, which has been mired in violence and civil unrest since the military seized power last year. (AP Photo/Heng Sinith, File)

(AP Photo/Heng Sinith, File)

BANGKOK (AP) — Cambodia’s foreign minister is making his second visit to Myanmar as a special envoy of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations to the country that has been mired in violence and civil unrest since the military seized power last year.

State-run television MRTV reported that Prak Sokhonn and his party were welcomed by officials from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs after their arrival in Yangon on Wednesday.

ASEAN has been seeking to implement a five-point consensus it reached on Myanmar last year calling for dialogue among all concerned parties, provision of humanitarian assistance, an immediate cessation of violence and a visit by a special envoy to meet all parties. Cambodia is the current chair of the 10-nation grouping, which includes Myanmar.

Myanmar’s military-installed government initially agreed to the consensus but has since made little effort to implement it, and the country has slipped into a situation that some U.N. experts have characterized as a civil war. Its stonewalling led fellow ASEAN members to block government leaders from attending major meetings of the regional grouping.

A spokesperson for the military government said on Tuesday that Prak Sokhoon will not be allowed to meet ousted government leader Aung San Suu Kyi during his five-day visit. Suu Kyi is being tried on multiple charges, including corruption, and was transferred last week to a custom-built solitary facility at a prison in Naypyitaw, the capital. Her supporters say the charges are politically motivated to discredit her and legitimize the military’s seizure of power.

The military ousted Suu Kyi’s elected government and then violently cracked down on widespread protests against its actions. After security forces unleashed lethal force against peaceful demonstrators, some opponents of military rule took up arms.

Cambodia’s government said Prak Sokhonn’s visit will follow up on the implementation of the five-point consensus, the outcome of a consultative meeting on ASEAN humanitarian assistance to Myanmar held in Cambodia last month, and help create an environment conducive to political dialogue through meetings with all concerned parties.

Prak Sokhonn is scheduled to meet with military government leader Senior Gen. Min Aung Hlaing and officials from at least six ethnic armed groups which have been seeking greater autonomy from the central government. But there is skepticism that the meeting will advance peacemaking because none of the groups attending is currently in armed conflict with the government.

During his first mission in March, Prak Sokhonn met with Min Aung Hlaing, diplomats from other ASEAN countries and the U.N. and a Myanmar politician. He said after his return that he had seen minor progress during his visit and was not allowed to meet with Suu Kyi and other opposition leaders.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


FILE - A man walks past a Microsoft sign set up for the Microsoft BUILD conference, April 28, 2015,...

Associated Press

Microsoft will pay $20M to settle U.S. charges of illegally collecting children’s data

Microsoft will pay a fine of $20 million to settle Federal Trade Commission charges that it illegally collected and retained the data of children

10 hours ago

FILE - OpenAI's CEO Sam Altman gestures while speaking at University College London as part of his ...

Associated Press

OpenAI boss ‘heartened’ by talks with world leaders over will to contain AI risks

OpenAI CEO Sam Altman said Monday he was encouraged by a desire shown by world leaders to contain any risks posed by the artificial intelligence technology his company and others are developing.

1 day ago

FILE - The draft of a bill that President Joe Biden and House Speaker Kevin McCarthy of Calif., neg...

Associated Press

Debt deal imposes new work requirements for food aid and that frustrates many Democrats

Democrats are deeply conflicted about the debt ceiling deal, fearing damage has been done to safety net programs

2 days ago

Seattle lawyer...

Associated Press

Lawsuit alleging ex-deputy falsified arrest report settled for $250K

A lawsuit filed by a Washington oyster farmer accusing a former county deputy of falsifying an arrest report

2 days ago

Mt. Rainier death...

Associated Press

Washington man climbing Mount Rainier dies near summit

A Washington state man who was trying to summit Mount Rainier this week collapsed and died near the top of the mountain.

4 days ago

biden crisis averted...

Zeke Miller and Chris Megerian

Biden celebrates a ‘crisis averted’ in Oval Office address on bipartisan debt ceiling deal

President Joe Biden celebrated a “crisis averted” in his first speech to the nation from the Oval Office Friday evening.

4 days ago

Sponsored Articles

Men's Health Month...

Men’s Health Month: Why It’s Important to Speak About Your Health

June is Men’s Health Month, with the goal to raise awareness about men’s health and to encourage men to speak about their health.

Internet Washington...

Major Internet Upgrade and Expansion Planned This Year in Washington State

Comcast is investing $280 million this year to offer multi-gigabit Internet speeds to more than four million locations.

Compassion International...

Brock Huard and Friends Rally Around The Fight for First Campaign

Professional athletes are teaming up to prevent infant mortality and empower women at risk in communities facing severe poverty.

Emergency Preparedness...

Prepare for the next disaster at the Emergency Preparedness Conference

Being prepared before the next emergency arrives is key to preserving businesses and organizations of many kinds.

SHIBA volunteer...

Volunteer to help people understand their Medicare options!

If you’re retired or getting ready to retire and looking for new ways to stay active, becoming a SHIBA volunteer could be for you!

safety from crime...

As crime increases, our safety measures must too

It's easy to be accused of fearmongering regarding crime, but Seattle residents might have good reason to be concerned for their safety.

ASEAN special envoy making 2nd visit to strife-torn Myanmar