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Myanmar commander hails Thailand's coup

Jul 04. 2014
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By Myanmar Eleven

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Myanmar's Commander-in-Chief General Min Aung Hlaing today made Thailand and Myanmar become the same type, praising the ruling junta of doing the right job to protect national security and people safety.
During a meeting with Thai Supreme Commander General Thanasak Patimaprakorn who is a deputy leader of the National Council for Pace and Order (NCPO) today, Ming Aung Hlaing said that the Tatmadaw (Myanmar armed forces) had similar experience, but worse in 1988.
In 1988, Myanmar students staged an uprising against military dictator regime of General Ne Win, which ended up with bloody military crackdown and a coup to take control over the country.
Myanmar junta known as State Law and Order Restoration Council and later changed to State Peace and Development Council - ruled Myanmar since then until 2010 when an election brought quasimilitary administration into power.
“The Army’s key mission is to safeguard national security and public safety,” Min Aung Hlaing reportedly told Tanasak. After considering the NCPO’s roadmap, aimed at achieving reconciliation and national reform, he was confident it would definitely succeed.
To his counterpart, Thanasak said that the military ties between Thailand and Myanmar would be strengthened.
"The bilateral military cooperation would be maintained, concerning measures to deal with border conflicts as well as joint training," Thanasak said. He also expressed supports joint economic development between the two countries, which are both Asean members. 
Thanasak also told the Myanmar counterpart that Thailand would ensure protection to Myanmar nationals now working in the kingdom in accordance with this country’s laws. Last month, a large number of Myanmar workers here were fleeing Thailand or hiding for fear of arrest, following the NCPO’s move to punish illegal labour.
Today's visit followed the one in 2013, when the general met then Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra. Then, he said the relations between Thailand and Myanmar are at their most cordial in the history of ties between the two countries.
The Thai military junta staged the coup on May 22 and planned to maintain the tight grip until the next election, which could be held in October 2015. The junta recently announced that the provisional Constitution would be enforced soon. While the Thai Army’s power strengthens, Myanmar’s armed forces have witnessed intensifying public resentment.
The National League for Democracy’s campaign has won over 3 million signatures from people who supported the charter amendment, which would weaken the Tatmadaw’s influence in politics. 
Min Aung Hlaing also met NCPO leader Prayuth Chan-ocha and made a courtesy call to and lunched with Chief of Privy Council General Prem Tinsulanonda who reportedly regarded the Myanmar commander as his son. Prem had close relation with Min Aung Hlaing’s father when he was the Thai army commander in late 1970s. Min Aung Hlaing, who asked Prem to adopt him as a son when firstly met in 2012, called the chief of privy council time to time over the past years whenever he was in Thailand. 

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