President Joko Widodo highlighted that Indonesia, as the 2023 chair of ASEAN, has conducted more than 145 engagements with as many as 70 relevant stakeholders in Myanmar….reports Asian Lite News
Jakarta has found public distrust towards the ruling military junta based on intensive engagements with the relevant stakeholders in Myanmar, said Indonesian President Joko Widodo (Jokowi).
He highlighted that Indonesia, as the 2023 chair of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), has conducted more than 145 engagements with as many as 70 relevant stakeholders in Myanmar, a member country of ASEAN, ANTARA news agency reported.
“… and Indonesia has witnessed developing trust among one stakeholder and another, except the military junta,” the President observed in his opening speech at the retreat session of the 43rd ASEAN Summit in Jakarta.
Indonesia is leading the regional bloc this year and has adopted “ASEAN Matters: Epicentrum of Growth” as the theme of its chairmanship. The engagements it has conducted with Myanmar have demonstrated its commitment, as the ASEAN chair, to maintaining Southeast Asia as a peaceful and stable growth centre, it was reported.
In his speech, President Widodo called on ASEAN to continue to push Myanmar to carry out inclusive national dialogue as a concrete implementation of the “Myanmar-owned and Myanmar-led crisis settlement mechanism.”
During its chairmanship, Indonesia has approached various parties in Myanmar, including the National Unity Government (NUG), which is a shadow government formed by the opposition junta, the State Administrative Council (SAC) formed by the military, ethnic resistance organizations (EROs), and civil society in Myanmar, to pave the way towards inclusive dialogue.
Inclusive dialogue is part of the Five-Point Consensus (5PC) agreed upon by ASEAN leaders and the chief of the Burmese military junta, Min Aung Hlaing, which aims to assist in resolving the ongoing political and economic crises sparked by the junta’s coup against the elected government.
However, since its formulation in April 2021, the consensus has not been genuinely implemented to put an end to the ongoing crises on account of the junta’s unwillingness to do so.
For that reason, ASEAN leaders are planning to make the most of the 43rd summit to review the implementation of the consensus, at the recommendation of their foreign affairs ministers.
For the sake of ASEAN interests, as one family, ASEAN must be bold to evaluate itself, openly discuss problems, and collectively find solutions to the crises plaguing Myanmar, Widodo said.
He then emphasized that it will require tactical and extraordinary measures on the part of ASEAN to push all Burmese stakeholders, including the military junta, to genuinely implement the Five-Point Consensus.
“Regarding the 5PC implementation, I would like to reiterate that the 5PC constitutes ASEAN’s collective effort, as a family. The 5PC, agreed upon by ASEAN leaders in Jakarta on April 21, 2021, will serve as ASEAN’s main guidelines,” he affirmed, it was reported.