Japan, Cambodia officials agree to cooperate on Myanmar

Ns News Online Desk:Ns News Online Desk: Japan’s foreign minister met Monday with the son and appointed successor of Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen and agreed to cooperate in dealing with the situation in Myanmar following the military’s seizure of power, Japanese officials said.

Hun Manet, who is currently commander of Cambodia’s army, accompanied his father during his January visit to Myanmar, the first by a foreign leader since the military took power a year ago.

During his talks with Hun Manet in Tokyo, Foreign Minister Yoshimasa Hayashi welcomed what he described as strong ties between Japan and Cambodia and their close cooperation on Myanmar and other regional issues, Japan’s Foreign Ministry said.

Cambodia is the current chair of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations and Hun Sen is leading the group’s efforts to ease the Myanmar crisis, which some U.N. experts have characterized as civil war.

Hayashi has praised Hun Sen’s visit to Myanmar as a positive effort to resolve the situation.

Hun Sen, who has held power for 36 years, has said he intends to stay in office until 2028 and has endorsed Hun Manet to succeed him.

Hayashi also said on Monday that Japan hopes to cooperate with Cambodia in achieving a free and open Indo-Pacific region, which Japan is pushing as a counter to China’s increasing influence.

Also Monday, Japanese brewery Kirin Holdings announced that it has decided to withdraw from its business in Myanmar and terminate its joint venture with a military-linked partner.

The brewery is the latest foreign company to pull out of Myanmar with international pressure building against the military-installed government and its crackdown on pro-democracy protesters.

According to Myanmar’s independent Assistance Association for Political Prisoners, security forces have killed more than 1,500 civilians.

Ousted leader Aung San Suu Kyi is being tried on multiple charges and has been sentenced to six years in prison. The cases against her are seen as an attempt to block her return to politics.

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