The Thai government on Monday (19 June) stood by its decision to host talks aimed at re-engaging with Myanmar’s military, saying dialogue was necessary to safeguard its border with the neighboring country.
Myanmar’s generals have been barred from high-level meetings of the 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) since they seized power in a 2021 coup, with conflict erupting between the military and those who challenged its takeover.
However, Thailand’s caretaker government invited ASEAN foreign ministers, including that of Myanmar, to discuss a proposal for the bloc to re-engage with Myanmar.
Thai Prime Minister Gen Prayut Chan-o-cha noted that “Thailand has a more than 3,000-km shared land border as well as a maritime border,” citing this as the reason for talks being necessary, rather than taking sides.
Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Affairs Minister Don Pramudwinai earlier said Myanmar’s crisis was creating cross-border problems and impacting commerce.