Working In UNSC To Get Balanced Outcome Over Complex Situation In Myanmar
India is in conversation with all concerned in Myanmar in trying to facilitate and address the situation, Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla said on Monday.
In an address at Ananta Aspen Centre, Mr Shringla said the situation in Myanmar was “complex” and that India is working in the UN Security Council in a constructive manner to facilitate “balanced outcomes” that could assist in resolving the situation.
Myanmar has been witnessing street protests since the military seized control of the country in a coup on February 1 after detaining Nobel laureate Aung San Suu Kyi and other leaders of her National League for Democracy (NLD).
He said the gains made by Myanmar over the last decades on the path towards democracy should not be undermined and that India has always been steadfast in its support to the process of democratic transition in the country for it to emerge as a stable democratic federal union.
“We have had good links with all concerned in Myanmar to work with all sides which we are doing. We are in open conversation with all concerned in trying to facilitate and address the situation to the best of our ability,” he said.
“But we as a democracy and a neighbour of Myanmar have a slightly different take from those who might be looking at it from elsewhere. We are certainly conscious to do it in a manner that is keeping in mind the sensitivities concerned, keeping in mind the requirements,” Mr Shringla said.
The foreign secretary also said imposition of sanctions against Myanmar could impact on food security or availability of goods as well as trigger inflation.
“What is important is that we need to work in a constructive manner to ensure that we ultimately meet our objective of restoring democracy but at the same time we need to ensure that we do it without in any way impacting the well-being and welfare of the people of Myanmar,” he said.
“In other words, we cannot adopt tactics that would be seen reasonable if you are far away and if you are not from the region. For example, imposition of sanctions — that can impact on food security or or availability of goods,” he said.
The foreign secretary said what happens in Myanmar does impact on India one way or the other.
“We are the immediate neighbour of Myanmar. We share a 1700-km border. There are strong community linkages between people who live on our side and those who live across the border,” he said.
“We as a strong democracy have been very very proactive in assisting and facilitating the process of Myanmar’s democratic transition and so obviously the recent developments have been somewhat of a setback and somewhat of concern for us,” he said.
The foreign secretary said India has undertaken several humanitarian projects that are important for the people of Myanmar.
“We intend to continue with those but at the same time we are happy to play our role in facilitating a resolution of the issue as it unfolds as the situation becomes clearer, working with all concerned,” he said.
Mr Shringla also expressed the hope that violence is avoided.