Three countries absent from ASEAN leaders’ meeting in Jakarta

Thailand, Laos and the Philippines said they could not attend the forum.

medialnews, JAKARTA – Three leaders from Thailand, Laos and the Philippines said they could not attend the ASEAN Leaders Meeting (ALM) forum to be held in Jakarta on Saturday (24/4). Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi said Thailand’s Prime Minister (PM) Prayuth Chan-o-cha specifically communicated directly with President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) to apologize for his absence.

“The Thai prime minister apologized for not being able to attend due to the Covid-19 situation in Thailand,” Foreign Minister Retno said in a press release at the Presidential Palace in Bogor on Friday (23 / 4) evening.

Tomorrow’s ASEAN leaders’ meeting will be held at the invitation of Brunei Darussalam’s leader Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah as current ASEAN president. The meeting of heads of ASEAN countries is expected to start at noon.

“If we look back, this ALM is an Indonesian initiative and follows between the talks between the President of the Republic of Indonesia and the Sultan of Brunei Darusalam as President of ASEAN,” Retno said.

One of the most important topics that will be discussed tomorrow at ALM is the solution for the Burmese people. ASEAN heads of state will seek agreement on measures to help Myanmar emerge from its current difficulties.

“The ALM is the first face-to-face meeting of ASEAN leaders during the pandemic. The leadership’s commitment to meet physically reflects ASEAN’s deep concern over the situation in Myanmar and ASEAN’s determination to help Myanmar emerge from this crisis, ”Retno said.

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