India on Friday abstained from voting on the UN General Assembly resolution on Myanmar saying that its views were not reflected in the draft resolution and a “consultative and constructive” approach involving Myanmar’s neighbouring countries is important as the international community strives for the peaceful resolution of the issue.
UNGA had adopted a resolution on Myanmar calling “upon the Myanmar armed forces to respect the people’s will as freely expressed by results of the general election of November 8, 2020, to end the state of emergency, to respect all human rights of people of Myanmar and to allow the sustained democratic transition of Myanmar, including the opening of the democratically elected parliament, and by working towards bringing all national institutions, including the armed forces, under a fully inclusive civilian government that is representative of the people’s will.”
Explaining the Indian context, India’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations, TS Tirumurti said, “we find that our views have not been reflected in the draft being considered for adoption today. We would like to reiterate that a consultative and constructive approach involving the neighbouring countries and the region, remains important as the international community strives for the peaceful resolution of the issue.”
“The fact that there is lack of support from all neighbouring countries, as well as several countries in the region itself, should, hopefully, serve as an eye-opener to those who choose to pursue a hasty course of action,” the Indian envoy said, adding that it does not believe that the tabling of this resolution for adoption at this juncture, is “conducive to aiding our joint efforts towards strengthening the democratic process in Myanmar.”
“We are therefore constrained to abstain,” added Tirumurti.
India shares both land and maritime borders with Myanmar, India has direct stakes in the maintenance of peace and stability in Myanmar.
In this regard, India welcomed the ASEAN initiative on Myanmar and the ‘Five-Point Consensus’. It calls for the envoy’s dispatch and the immediate cessation of violence.
Tirumurti stressed on diplomatic engagements aimed at strengthening these efforts and called for upholding the rule of law and release of detained leaders.
He said that India’s position on the situation in Myanmar has been clear and consistent. It has expressed deep concern on the developments in Myanmar and strongly condemned the use of violence and urged maximum restraint.
“We are firm that the path to democracy in Myanmar should continue to move forward through the process of democratic transition, which India has steadfastly supported. There can be no turning back on this,” said the Indian envoy.
“India will continue to engage with measures to accelerate and support the democratic transition in Myanmar so that the hopes and aspirations of the people of Myanmar are fully respected and met,” added Tirumurti.
The elected leaders of Myanmar were overthrown by the army on February 1 in a coup that has plunged the Southeast Asian country into chaos.
The army overthrew Aung Sang Suu Kyi, saying her party had cheated in November elections, an accusation rejected by the previous election commission and international monitors.
Since then, the army has failed to establish control. It faces daily protests, strikes that have paralysed the economy, assassinations and bomb attacks and a resurgence of conflicts in Myanmar’s borderlands.