In her virtual discussion with H.E. Mr. Samdech Akka Moha Sena Padei Hun Sen, Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Cambodia, the Special Envoy of the Secretary-General on Myanmar Ms. Noeleen Heyzer urged for immediate action based on strengthened United Nations – Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) cooperation to prevent further deterioration of the situation in Myanmar and address the desperate needs of its people. She expressed deep concern about continued intensification of military operations, including aerial attacks in parts of the country, emphasising that the people of Myanmar needed to see indicators and results on the ground, requiring any goodwill to be demonstrated in concrete terms.
As highlighted in her discussions with ASEAN Foreign Ministers, the Special Envoy appreciated the confidence of regional leaders in her trust-building efforts with all stakeholders in Myanmar and reliable assessment of the situation on the ground, based on regular contacts with affected communities across the country who continue to appeal for her support and urgent assistance.
The Special Envoy underlined her readiness to help strengthen regional efforts towards effective urgent implementation of the “Five-Point Consensus,” aligned with the will of the people of Myanmar. The Special Envoy stressed that a Myanmar-led process, that is guided by the will of the people, towards a peaceful, democratic and inclusive future needed to be supported by a coherent international approach grounded on regional unity
She committed to working closely with the Chair of ASEAN and its members towards this end, making available the wide array of comparative advantages and expertise of the United Nations to reinforce and complement regional action, grounded on the “Five-Point Consensus,” as a vital step.
The Special Envoy underlined the urgency for an expanded approach to providing humanitarian assistance. In this respect, she highlighted an UN-ASEAN “humanitarian plus” umbrella could coordinate and deliver assistance to affected communities through all existing channels, and address the multiple priority needs of the people across the country. This would include civilian protection as well as food security, socio-economic resilience, humanitarian and COVID assistance. The Special Envoy welcomed the Prime Minister’s invitation to co-facilitate such efforts.
She also stressed the importance of advancing the “Five-Point Consensus,” including an immediate cessation of violence, and for all parties to exercise utmost restraint. For this, the Special Envoy advocated for confidence-building measures involving all stakeholders, in addition to ethnic armed organizations. In this regard, she proposed the UN and ASEAN, as part of its “humanitarian plus” joint action, consider pursuing with all sides a humanitarian pause in targeted areas to allow safe and unhindered access.
The Special Envoy reiterated her offer to work closely with the Special Envoy of the ASEAN Chair. This meant bringing in broader support from the international community and United Nations system around a coordinated strategy towards creating an enabling environment for inclusive dialogue.
She emphasized solutions needed to derive from engaging directly with and listening carefully to all those affected by the ongoing crisis. For example, the Special Envoy encouraged the formation of an UN-ASEAN Women, Peace and Security platform to amplify the voices of women and young people, including from hard-to-reach areas. She looks forward to future discussions with the ASEAN Foreign Ministers to pave the way on the concrete recommendations for joint action.