State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi held separate meetings about the Rakhine issue with UN Secretary-General António Guterres and US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson on the sidelines of the 31st Asean Summit.
Aung San Suu Kyi held a private meeting with Tillerson at the International Trade Center of the Philippines in Manila on November 14. This meeting came before the second day’s sessions of the Summit of Asean’s Leaders was held.
The between the State Counsellor and the US top’s diplomat lasted only about half an hour. Also present at the meeting were Kyaw Tin, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, and the Myanmar ambassador to Asean. During the meeting, they focused on Rakhine issue, the refugees fleeing to Bangladesh and humanitarian aid.
Tillerson is due to visit Myanmar on Wednesday when the Asean Summit and related meetings are finished.
Aung San Suu Kyi separately met with Guterres on the evening of November 13. During the meeting, the State Counsellor and the UN’s chief spotlighted the Rakhine issue. Details of the discussions have not been revealed yet.
Aung San Suu Kyi came back to Manila Hotel where she staying at 1am on November 14, but how long Aung San Suu Kyi and Guterres were in discussions is not known.
During the meeting, Guterres told the Nobel laureate that hundreds of thousands of displaced Muslims who had fled to Bangladesh should be allowed to return to their homes in Myanmar.
The Secretary-General said that strengthened efforts to ensure humanitarian access, safe, dignified, voluntary and sustained returns, as well as true reconciliation between communities, would be essential.
Aung San Suu Kyi also met with Shinzo Abe, Japanese Prime Minister, on November 14. The leaders of three Asean member states, including Najib Razak, Malaysian Prime Minister, demanded Myanmar to deal with Rakhine issue at the 31st Asean, although Asean continues its non-interference policy. Aung San Suu Kyi explained Rakhine issue at the Asean plenary session.