11 July 2024

Cambodia, the current chair of ASEAN, is to hold a high-level consultative meeting on May 6th, to discuss ways and means ofproviding humanitarian assistance to Myanmar, according to an informed source.

The source said that the one-day hybrid meeting will be attended by all ASEAN members and representatives from the United Nations’ specialised agencies, as well as civil society organisations. Relevant political parties and ethnic armed organisations will also be invited.

During the visit of ASEAN special envoy, CambodianForeign Minister Prak Sokhonn, to Myanmar last month, he proposed the idea to the State Administrative Council at their meeting in Naypyidaw. Both sides agreed to hold the consultative session.

Ko Hlaing, chief of the Myanmar Task Force, will head the Myanmar delegation. Last month, he told the ASEANdelegation that humanitarian assistance could be channelled through Yangon’s international airport and seaport only. He pointed out that land routes would not be permitted.

This multi-stakeholder dialogue will explore ways and means of effectively delivering humanitarian assistance to the affected people of Myanmar.

The meeting will allow the officials and other stakeholders to exchange views and prioritise their programs.

The source said that ASEAN will also solicit support from ASEAN’s dialogue partners in providing additional assistance to Myanmar.

In April 2021, the ASEAN leaders agreed on the five-point consensus. Humanitarian assistance to Myanmar is one of the priorities for ASEAN implementation, to help ease the dire situation faced by the people in Myanmar.