KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 25 (NNN-Bernama) — Malaysia’s position to only invite non-political representatives from Myanmar to ASEAN’s high-level meetings remain unchanged – unless there was real progress in the implementation of the Five-Point Consensus (5PCs).
According to the Malaysian Foreign Ministry (Wisma Putra), this view was expressed by Prime Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob during a video conference with his Cambodian counterpart Hun Sen Tuesday, at the latter’s request.
He also reaffirmed Malaysia’s position pertaining to the need for the Special Envoy of the ASEAN Chair on Myanmar to be granted access to all parties concerned in the country towards finding a peaceful solution in the interests of the people of Myanmar.
“In this relation, Malaysia supports the appointment of Prak Sokhonn (Cambodian Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister) as the new Special Envoy,” the statement read.
Ismail Sabri emphasised the urgent need for de-escalation of the situation in Myanmar and cessation of violence against civilians.
He also urged for an inclusive political dialogue involving all parties concerned in the interest of the people of Myanmar and called for the immediate and unconditional release of all political prisoners, including Aung San Suu Kyi and U Win Myint.
The Prime Minister opined that proposed measures to address the situation in Myanmar should be deliberated at the ASEAN Foreign Ministers and Senior Officials’ level.
“Malaysia agreed with the proposal by the ASEAN Chair for the ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ Retreat to be convened as soon as possible,” said the statement.
Wisma Putra said Ismail Sabri also highlighted that Malaysia remained committed to supporting ASEAN’s efforts to provide humanitarian assistance to the people of Myanmar.
In this regard, he emphasised on the continuation of humanitarian assistance through the ASEAN Coordinating Centre for Humanitarian Assistance on disaster management (AHA Centre), with the support of ASEAN member states and the grouping’s external partners.
Myanmar has been going through upheaval since Feb 1, 2021, when armed forces chief Gen Min Aung Hlaing ousted an elected government led by democracy champion Aung San Suu Kyi with more than 1,000 people reported killed in the following unrest.
Aiming to help seek reconciliation and restore peace in Myanmar, ASEAN had agreed to the Five-Point Consensus on April 24, 2021, calling for the end of violence in Myanmar, constructive talks among all stakeholders, facilitation of humanitarian aid, deployment of an ASEAN special envoy to conduct talks with all stakeholders, and for the special envoy to be allowed to visit the country.
The insufficient progress in the implementation of the consensus by the junta resulted in them being snubbed from the 38th and 39th ASEAN Summits and Related Summits held in late October 2021.