Thai Foreign Minister met with Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, and its impact

Myanmar Spring Chronicle – July 12 Scenes

MoeMaKa, July 13, 2023

Thai Foreign Minister met with Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, and its impact

It was revealed in the news on July 11 that Thai Foreign Minister Don Pramudwinai had secretly visited Nay Pyi Taw on July 9. The motive for this visit was unknown then. The following day, on the morning of July 12, word spread that the Thai Foreign Minister had traveled to Nay Pyi Taw to meet with Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, that he had the opportunity to do so, and that Daw Aung San Suu Kyi’s message would probably be read during the current ASEAN meeting.

In the past 2 years, international leaders, representatives of ASEAN’s rotating chairmanship, and UN special envoys have not been granted permission to meet with Daw Aung San Suu Kyi. Why was the Thai Foreign Minister able to meet with Daw Aung San Suu Kyi almost 2 and a half years later? And what will be the effect? How much does she know about the situation of the party she led outside of prison, the armed struggle in which many of the party’s leaders are involved, the violence, killings, and burning down of houses across the country, the war refugees that have reached over a million, the economic decline, and the unexpected amount of crimes that are happening every day? What will her comment be on this? Such assumptions have been raised.

The fact that the military council wanted and tried to remove Daw Aung San Suu Kyi from Myanmar’s political sphere can be seen by looking at the UN Special Representative and the ASEAN Alternate Chairman’s special representatives not able to meet with her for the past 2 years. In cases of requests to meet with Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, referring to her as an important figure in Myanmar politics, the military council has always said that it does not accept the conclusion that the issue was not due to an individual. However, at the moment, contrary to that excuse, allowing the Thai Foreign Minister to meet a few days before the ASEAN meeting, I don’t think it would be wrong to say that the military council had used Daw Aung San Suu Kyi’s role as an attempt to find a way out of the current international pressure and internal armed conflict.

It is seen that some local news outlets have reported uncertain information and news that they have met Daw Aung San Suu Kyi or not. It was first reported by the Ayeyarwady Times News Agency, based on Nay Pyi Taw news sources. While confirming that the Thai Foreign Minister entered the Nay Pyi Taw prison, the report questioned and doubted the fact that Daw Aung San Suu Kyi received him. Some political forces also have doubts, such as how to believe the meeting, it is impossible for the discussion to take place in the situation where the meeting was only arranged by those who arrested her, and another reason is that it is impossible that Daw Aung San Suu Kyi supports an unscheduled dialogue. We can see how such doubts have implicated the current path of the armed revolution.

Here, most of the young people think that “the spring revolution did not appear because of Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, this revolution is to reverse the military dictatorship system, the influence of the military in politics, military coups, etc. that started in 1958/1962, and to reverse history.” This incident seems to highlight the difference between the opinion of the youth and the opinion of some adults and middle-aged people that “Daw Aung San Suu Kyi cannot be excluded from Myanmar politics.”

On the one hand, there is a political path centered on Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, which aims to root out the coup military, and on the other hand, there are those who believe that “whether Daw Aung San Suu Kyi agrees or disagrees with the armed path, this is the path determined by history, and they will follow their path to the end.”

If the National Unity Government (NUG) views its armed forces as a group of collective armed forces, in other words, if it adopts that policy, whether Daw Aung San Suu Kyi supports the armed path or not doesn’t matter, but what matters is to have the cohesion, attitude, and position in a unified manner. Otherwise, if it doesn’t try to get out of the political shadow of Daw Aung San Suu Kyi and make independent decisions, it will not be going towards the same goal in the most agreed-upon method among the allies, youth activists, and ethnic armed forces who are fighting for self-determination. It can lead to more than one common goal in the revolution, and the methods of revolting can be various.

In other words, meeting Daw Aung San Suu Kyi or not, and her attitude towards the armed struggle called the current Spring Revolution are reliable points for the military council, and it has become clear that those who have adopted the path of armed revolution need to get out from under the political shadow of Daw Aung San Suu Kyi.