MOFA Press Release: Myanmar rejects ASEAN Leaders’ Review & Decision

12 November 2022
2022-11-12 10:21

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs issued a press release on 11th November.

It stated that the Ministry learnt the issuance of the ASEAN Leaders’ Review and Decision on the Implementation of the five-point consensus at the 40th and 41st ASEAN Summits which was held in Phnom Penh, Cambodia on 11 November.

The current Chair of ASEAN invited a non-political representative from Myanmar to attend the said meetings due to the demand made by some ASEAN member states. Such action of unequal representation contradicts the Article 5 of the ASEAN Charter on “Rights and Obligations”.

Since Myanmar is fully adhered to the basic principles and provision enshrined in the ASEAN Charter while actively participating in ASEAN as a responsible member state, Myanmar did not accept the invitation which discriminates the level of representation among the Member States.

The Ministry learnt that the ASEAN Leaders’ review and decision on the implementation of the five-point consensus did not factually reflect the on-ground situation and did not include any constructive efforts made by Myanmar government in the implementation of the five-point consensus.

Some expressions in the document amount to interference of the internal affairs of the one member state and were contrary to the basic principles and provisions in the ASEAN Charter. Therefore, Myanmar categorically rejects and dissociates itself from the said-review and decision made by the nine ASEAN leaders.

As a responsible member state of ASEAN, Myanmar has been constructively cooperating with the Special Envoy of the ASEAN Chair in implementing the ASEAN five-point consensus.

To achieve ever-lasting peace and stability in every corner of the country, the Government has already declared the unilateral ceasefire and the Head of State himself is holding several rounds of dialogues with Ethnic Armed Organizations (EAOs) including in facilitating the delivery of broader humanitarian assistance to the population, without any discrimination, in cooperation with the AHA Centre.

Therefore, Myanmar is disappointed that ASEAN ignores the notable progress made by Myanmar in implementation of five-point consensus. The Ministry also strongly objects the inappropriate usage to refer Myanmar government and Tatmadaw that take responsibility of the state in accordance the Constitution.

The Ministry regrettably observed that the Statement calls for the engagement with all parties concerned which is referring to the groups who have been committing terrorist acts to disturb the government’s efforts.

Such calls for engagements with the said unlawful and terrorist organizations could encourage terrorist activities while violating the Article 2 of the ASEAN Charter as well as the ASEAN and International Conventions on counter terrorisms.

Therefore, Myanmar strongly objects and condemns the attempts by ASEAN member states to engage with those unlawful and terrorist organizations through any means and forms. Since implementing the five-point consensus is a process, inserting additional pressure by setting a timeframe will create more negative implications than positive ones.

Indeed, one-sided and malicious approach towards Myanmar, including blocking Myanmar from further participation in the ASEAN meetings by giving inappropriate reason such as lack of improvement in the implementation of the five-point consensus, could provoke the disturbance of ASEAN Community building, ASEAN Unity, Centrality and ASEAN spirit.

Such attempts totally neglect Myanmar’s active participation in the work of ASEAN since its joining of ASEAN in 1997 as well as Myanmar government’s on-going efforts to reinstate a multi-party democracy.

The Ministry reaffirms that Myanmar will continue to adhere to the Article 20 of the ASEAN Charter on decision making by “consultation and consensus” by all ten ASEAN member states. Myanmar objects any discussion or decisions without the involvement of country concerned.

The Ministry reiterates its call to ASEAN Member States to follow the provisions and fundamental principles of the ASEAN Charter, especially non-interference in the internal affairs of the member states. The Ministry reminds that failure to do so would be counterproductive and creates negative impacts on the ASEAN Centrality and Unity.

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