Aug 26, 2008 (DVB), A National League for Democracy spokesperson has dismissed the Thai prime minister's comment that the international community should focus on the 2010 elections instead of dialogue with Daw Aung San Suu Kyi.
According to AFP, Thai prime minister Samak Sundaravej told United Nations special envoy Ibrahim Gambari on Monday that the international community should focus on engagement with the regime.
Samak said that Western nations' focus on the release of detained NLD leader Daw Aung San Suu Kyi was not the most effective way to bring democracy to Burma.
"Europe uses Aung San Suu Kyi as a tool. If it's not related to Aung San Suu Kyi, you can have deeper discussions with Burma," the AFP quoted Samak as saying.
"The [international community] should talk about how to bring democracy to Burma and focus on the constitution and the elections."
The Thai prime minister said he would make the same point in a meeting with UN secretary-general Ban Ki-moon in New York next month.
NLD spokesperson U Nyan Win said the Thai prime minister's comments had been inappropriate.
"I would like to say two things about it. The first thing is that Mr Samak is interfering our country’s politics with his words," Nyan Win said.
"The second , he is speaking about things that aren’t appropriate in his position as a country leader."
Military analyst Win Min said Samak's comments reflected the Thai government's desire to preserve good relations with the Burmese regime.
"I take it as Mr Samak is only saying these things to please the Burmese junta as two neighbouring countries that have close economic ties," Win Min said.
"Most of the southeast Asian countries including Thailand seemed to want to have diplomatic ties with Burma in the same way," he said.
"But so far I haven’t seen any improvements in Burma as a result of this method."
Reporting by Aye Nai