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World Official: US at turning point in dealing with Myanmar crisis

11:55  21 october  2021
11:55  21 october  2021 Source:   msn.com

ASEAN ministers mull censuring Myanmar for hindering envoy

  ASEAN ministers mull censuring Myanmar for hindering envoy KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) — Southeast Asia’s top diplomats will discuss in an emergency meeting Friday whether to allow Myanmar's military leader to attend an annual summit after a crisis envoy was barred from meeting ousted leader Aung San Suu Kyi. The Association of Southeast Asian Nations had appointed Brunei Second Foreign Minister Erywan Yusof in August as its special envoy to mediate an end to the Myanmar crisis. However, he abruptly canceled his trip to the violence-wracked nation this week after being informed by his hosts that he would not be able to meet Suu Kyi and others as he wanted.

JAKARTA, Indonesia (AP) — The United States is at a turning point in deciding how to handle the crisis in military-ruled Myanmar, weighing further political and economic steps to pressure the government to change its behavior, a senior U.S. official said Thursday.

In this photo released by U.S. Embassy in Indonesia, Derek Chollet, right, counselor of the U.S. Department of State, and Kin Moy, principal deputy assistant secretary for the Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs, attend an exclusive interview with The Associated Press at the embassy in Jakarta, Indonesia, Thursday, Oct. 21, 2021. Chollet said that the U.S. is at an “inflection point” for how to handle the continued crisis in Myanmar. The U.S. has been one of the most vocal opponents of the military takeover that ousted Aung San Suu Kyi’s elected government in February. Chollet says that there are political and economic “levers” that can be used. (U.S. Embassy in Indonesia via AP) © Provided by Associated Press In this photo released by U.S. Embassy in Indonesia, Derek Chollet, right, counselor of the U.S. Department of State, and Kin Moy, principal deputy assistant secretary for the Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs, attend an exclusive interview with The Associated Press at the embassy in Jakarta, Indonesia, Thursday, Oct. 21, 2021. Chollet said that the U.S. is at an “inflection point” for how to handle the continued crisis in Myanmar. The U.S. has been one of the most vocal opponents of the military takeover that ousted Aung San Suu Kyi’s elected government in February. Chollet says that there are political and economic “levers” that can be used. (U.S. Embassy in Indonesia via AP)

“The situation is getting worse inside Burma, both from a humanitarian point of view, from a security point of view, in terms of the economy and the lack of progress on the politics,” U.S. State Department Counselor Derek Chollet told The Associated Press in an interview.

Myanmar junta 'extremely disappointed' over leader's exclusion from ASEAN summit

  Myanmar junta 'extremely disappointed' over leader's exclusion from ASEAN summit Myanmar's military junta said Saturday it was "extremely disappointed" with a decision by Southeast Asian foreign ministers to exclude its leader Min Aung Hlaing from an upcoming summit. © AP Myanmar's junta chief Min Aung Hlaing presides over a military parade on Armed Forces Day in Naypyidaw, Myanmar on March 27. The decision to exclude Min Aung Hlaing from the October 26-28 summit was made during an Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) emergency meeting late on Friday, according to a statement from the current chair of the group, Brunei.

The U.S. has been one of the most vocal opponents of the military takeover that ousted Aung San Suu Kyi’s elected government in February. Suu Kyi was arrested and detained with top members of her National League for Democracy party, including President Win Myint.

A detailed accounting by the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners blames security forces for the killings of almost 1,200 civilians and arresting over 9,043 others since Feb. 1. The government now faces a growing insurgency in many parts of the country.

Chollet, who serves as an adviser to the secretary of state, gave an online interview while the U.S. delegation was in Indonesia after visiting Thailand and Singapore ahead of an annual summit of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations in Brunei, where the situation in Myanmar is likely to dominate.

Crowds outside Myanmar's prisons await freed detainees

  Crowds outside Myanmar's prisons await freed detainees BANGKOK (AP) — Crowds gathered Tuesday outside prisons around Myanmar, waiting for at least a glimpse of friends and relatives who were being freed under an amnesty for people arrested for protesting against military rule. The head of the army-installed government, Senior Gen. Min Aung Hlaing, announced the amnesty covering more than 5,600 people on Monday. State television said it included 1,316 convicts who would be freed from prisons around the country and 4,320 others pending trial whose charges would be suspended. © Provided by Associated Press Family members and friends wait to welcome released prisoners outside the Insein Prison Tuesday, Oct.

“We think that we have tools that can help stem the worst from happening in the near term. But as I said, I think we are at an inflection point in the process," Chollet said. There are political and economic levers that can be pulled by the U.S. and other governments to “pressure the regime to try to give them the kinds of incentives to change their behavior.”

In this photo released by U.S. Embassy in Indonesia, Derek Chollet, center, counselor of the U.S. Department of State, with Kin Moy, left, principal deputy assistant secretary for the Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs, and Craig Hart, U.S. deputy assistant administrator for East Asia and the Pacific, attends an exclusive interview with The Associated Press at the embassy in Jakarta, Indonesia, Thursday, Oct. 21, 2021. Chollet said that the U.S. is at an “inflection point” for how to handle the continued crisis in Myanmar. The U.S. has been one of the most vocal opponents of the military takeover that ousted Aung San Suu Kyi’s elected government in February. Chollet says that there are political and economic “levers” that can be used. (U.S. Embassy in Indonesia via AP) © Provided by Associated Press In this photo released by U.S. Embassy in Indonesia, Derek Chollet, center, counselor of the U.S. Department of State, with Kin Moy, left, principal deputy assistant secretary for the Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs, and Craig Hart, U.S. deputy assistant administrator for East Asia and the Pacific, attends an exclusive interview with The Associated Press at the embassy in Jakarta, Indonesia, Thursday, Oct. 21, 2021. Chollet said that the U.S. is at an “inflection point” for how to handle the continued crisis in Myanmar. The U.S. has been one of the most vocal opponents of the military takeover that ousted Aung San Suu Kyi’s elected government in February. Chollet says that there are political and economic “levers” that can be used. (U.S. Embassy in Indonesia via AP)

“Part of what we are trying to do as the United States is to come in and not dictate the terms, but to offer our best perspectives and also hear from different partners here in the region,” he said. In talks with the three key ASEAN members, the U.S. delegation was able to to get "a sense of their ideas of the best way forward.”

ASEAN leaders hold summit with Myanmar’s general shut out

  ASEAN leaders hold summit with Myanmar’s general shut out KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) — Southeast Asian leaders are meeting this week for their annual summit where Myanmar’s top general, whose forces seized power in February and shattered one of Asia’s most phenomenal democratic transitions, has been shut out for refusing to take steps to end the deadly violence. Myanmar defiantly protested the exclusion of Senior Gen. Min Aung Hlaing, who currently heads its government and ruling military council, from the summit of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations. Brunei, which currently leads the 10-nation bloc, will host the three-day meetings starting Tuesday by video due to coronavirus concerns.

The U.S., along with the United Kingdom and the European Union, has already placed sanctions on high-ranking Myanmar military members and state-owned enterprises — including those dealing in lucrative timber and gems — that are considered revenue streams for the military.

But activists have been quick to point out that the sanctions have not included American and French oil and gas companies working in Myanmar, allowing the military to maintain its single-largest source of foreign currency revenue. It allows them to make purchases such as refined petroleum, weapons, packaged medicines and other imported goods.

“Not having sanctions is allowing these massive multination companies that have huge stakeholder investment to be potentially complicit in ongoing atrocities and crimes in Myanmar,” said Manny Maung, a Myanmar researcher for Human Rights Watch. “These business relationships are basically going directly to criminal junta. The failure to take reasonable steps ... is really quite reckless and allowing businesses to be complicit.”

Southeast Asian summit begins without Myanmar after junta snubbed

  Southeast Asian summit begins without Myanmar after junta snubbed Southeast Asian leaders kicked off an ASEAN summit Tuesday but Myanmar refused to send a representative after being angered by the bloc's decision to exclude the country's junta chief. The virtual gathering marked the start of three days of meetings hosted by the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, with US President Joe Biden as well as Chinese and Russian leaders set to attend. Myanmar topped the agenda of Tuesday's talks between regionalThe virtual gathering marked the start of three days of meetings hosted by the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, with US President Joe Biden as well as Chinese and Russian leaders set to attend.

Chollet admitted there is “no question” that sanctioning of the oil business is a tool available to the U.S. But he also cautioned that Washington would need to “keep in mind the interests” of allies and partners in the region.

“That’s why we’re here is to think through what’s the way forward, what could actually work to try to change the outlook of the junta,” he said. “But then also how can we do so in a way that doesn’t make our problems worse.” He said the Biden administration has not made a final decision.

On Friday, ASEAN announced that it would not invite Myanmar’s military leader Senior Gen. Min Aung Hlaing to the summit, a major repudiation for the country after it refused to allow an ASEAN envoy meet with Suu Kyi. The envoy, a Brunei diplomat, subsequently canceled his trip to Myanmar.

The decision was applauded by the U.N. special rapporteur on human rights in Myanmar, Tom Andrews. He said the military government was seeking money, weapons and legitimacy from the international community.

“ASEAN’s announcement that the junta will not be welcome at its upcoming summit denies the junta the ... legitimacy,” he said Monday. “Sustained pressure on all three fronts ... is the best way the international community can support the people of Myanmar to protect their human rights and save their country.”

ASEAN says Myanmar ‘part of the family’ as summit concludes .
Brunei Sultan says Southeast Asian grouping hopes coup leaders will cooperate and help country return to normal.The military seized power of Myanmar in February, detaining civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi and triggering mass protests and economic chaos.

usr: 1
This is interesting!