Pattaya Daily News

13 October 2007 :: 17:10:09 pm 30725

Un Special Envoy To Confer With Thai Pm On Myanmar

BANGKOK, Oct 13 - Thai Prime Minister Gen. Surayud Chulanont said Saturday he would meet with Ibrahim Gambari, special advisor to the United Nations Secretary-General on Myanmar, Monday and that he would hear what other members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) can do to end violence in Myanmar.
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Gen. Surayud said during his weekly television programme that the world community is watching what ASEAN could achieve as a regional grouping and also as members of the UN, with major friendly countries like China and India to assist and help stop the violence against protesters in Myanmar.

The Thai Foreign Ministry said in its press release that Mr. Gambari would pay a three-day visit to Thailand, starting Sunday. He is also scheduled to hold talks with Foreign Minister Nitya Pibulsonggram Monday morning.

Stressing that Thailand — whose population like its neighbour Myanmar is mainly Buddhist — Gen. Surayud said his government’s role towards attempts to end the violence in Myanmar was not less than other countries.

Thailand disagrees with the use of violence against the Myanmar people, especially against monks, and it hopes that the State Peace and Development Council government would understand, he said, adding that his administration had also sent a letter stating the Thai government’s stance to the Myanmar government.

Gen. Surayud said his government which was installed by the military following a bloodless coup on September 19, 2006 must, however, be cautious in expressing opinions to the Myanmar administration.

He said his government did not want to leave any problem for the new Thai government which will be formed after the general election scheduled for December 23.

On October 2, Gen. Surayud sent a letter to Senior General Than Shwe, chairman of Myanmar’s State Peace and Development Council, calling on the junta leader to halt violent actions against his country’s Buddhist monks.

He said in the letter that Thailand could not accept the use of violence against the Buddhist monks in Myanmar, adding that what further action could be taken would depend on consultations among the 10-member ASEAN, of which Thailand is a founding member.

In September, Thailand and ASEAN expressed grave concern over the Myanmar government’s use of violence against demonstrators and called upon it to exercise the utmost restraint and resume efforts to end street protests through peaceful means.

ASEAN’s stance came after almost two weeks of repression in which the Myanmar authorities said 10 people were killed as the recent protests were dispersed. However, diplomats and activists say the number of dead was many times higher.

Reporter : PDN staff   Photo : PDN staff   Category : World News

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