|source||Column : Thailand meets Burma|
in Thailand’s big bureaucratic system Many knowledgeable and expert bureaucrats are hidden, many are so absorbed by the “system” that they are unable to show their potential. Many are discouraged and others suffer. In the past, unstable Thai politics failed to successfully reform the bureaucracy. Or although new government reforms were initiated during the lifetime of Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra, political instability over the past 20 years would inevitably make structural changes a futile dream.
Thailand’s foreign policy towards Burma is a reflection of bureaucratic traps. After the 2014 coup, Thailand’s stance towards Burma was unclear. And often causes criticism in the countries of the free world. Whether it is the era of a democratic government under the NLD or after the 2021 coup, Thailand still does not have a concrete framework or concept. His demeanor is different and more friendly to Burma than other ASEAN countries. More than a superpower that has huge interests in Burma like China. Ask Don Pramudwinai and use the word “surveillance” visit, while countries with ASEAN leadership status become Indonesia and Singapore are very reserved towards Myanmar. in case of accusations from the world community and it is also a matter of preserving the dignity of his government
The author is quite confident that among all the countries in ASEAN. Myanmar has the most positive attitude towards Thailand. And Thailand saw that under the traditional bureaucratic system, Thailand had to rely on Myanmar’s natural resources. Good relations between the two countries mean Thailand’s energy security. The richness of border trade And the peace along the Thai-Burma border remains an important security issue for Thailand. So a connection with a neighbor like Burma fits. No matter how much the world community or ASEAN tries to drive policies that will bring Burma back to peace talks and democratic paths. Thailand always has a reserved attitude.
The author remembers meeting an adult in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs once. The adult half-jokingly told the author, “The teacher will never know everything. So let’s not overanalyze anything,” just to show that no one knows Burma better than bureaucrats in the ministry.
When Thailand did not have a policy towards Burma that would make the whole world praise it Or act as one of the leaders of ASEAN in a proper way. The question then is what to do? Thailand can restore its prestige in the international political arena. As the author is familiar with Burmese affairs. It must be said that Myanmar is the key that can really restore Thailand’s credibility on the world stage.
In addition to having a border with Burma that is more than 2,400 kilometers, Thailand is the only “free” country that has a border with Burma. Whenever there is unrest within Burma Thailand will be a source of Burmese refugees. According to information from the Ministry of Interior Thailand is divided into groups of irregular immigrants (irregular immigrants), or what we call them together. It is popular that there are 6 types of refugees, including those fleeing the war from Myanmar. Myanmar refugees, Uighurs, Rohingyas, North Koreans and refugees in urban areas Currently, there are 9 temporary shelters for Burmese refugees in 8 districts and 4 states on the Myanmar side, with a population of about 77,000 people. carpet bombing in areas that are strongholds of opposition and ethnic militias. Until causing the Burmese to flee to die in another part of Thailand The basic policy of the Thai government is to push out as many immigrants as possible. both pushed back to the country of origin or pushed to a third country But when both options become more difficult. The pressure is on Thailand about how to deal with the immigration crisis that has already happened.
a few days ago the writer was invited by a friend to give a briefing on the results of the election in Thailand and the impact on Burma. Up to 250 civil society participants from inside and outside Burma were involved before the launch. The organizer of the briefing told the author that there would be many questions. Because the sector of the people, including those against the junta, are interested and watch the elections in Thailand very closely. Questions reflected by the participants indicated that the Burmese people gave hope to the new Thai government to work together to solve the problem on many levels. Both the refugee problem Or encourage Thailand to be the main ASEAN engine to push for peace in Burma.
since the coup Those who took steps on negotiations to bring Burma back to the old democratic way are ASEAN. And a road map called “5 Consensus” was born However, for more than 2 years, the coup junta completely ignored this road map. and cause any discussions to be fruitless The author is also of the opinion that if Thailand has a policy directly related to Burma that has been screened by stakeholders For the first aim is to alleviate the suffering of the people affected by the fighting in Burma first. and the second step is to lead negotiations with Burma in the ASEAN forum. This will raise the image of Thailand’s foreign affairs. If the new government has a democratic party as a leader The author believes that the policies related to Burma described above will certainly happen.
back to the country Thailand has millions of Burmese workers legally and illegally. In Thailand’s labor shortage situation fewer children are born and began to enter a fully aging society Workers from neighboring countries will drive the country in the future. But in the past, these workers were exploited. who do not receive the same salary as Thai workers and is a target of human trafficking When the new government aims to protect the human rights and basic rights of the people All these rights would cover all foreign workers who are time has been Thailand’s driving mechanism. With the situation worsening on the Myanmar side it is not difficult to predict that there will be an influx of illegal workers to Thailand in the future. The new government should make the registration of foreign workers easier. to bring these people into the system
in the end really can’t deny that internal security in Burma means security in Thailand Both security in the original sense are territorial and military. Thailand’s survival in the regional and global arena In addition, there is also the growth of the Thai business sector.