Thai PM says Myanmar regime 'losing strength'

Thai PM says Myanmar regime 'losing strength'


Myanmar is in the throes of an insurgency on multiple fronts

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SAMUI, Thailand (Reuters) - Thai Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin told Reuters now is a good time to open talks with Myanmar as the military regime that seized power in a 2021 coup is weakening.

Myanmar is in the throes of an insurgency on multiple fronts, with allied anti-junta groups backed by a pro-democracy parallel government seizing control of several military posts and towns, including parts of a key town on the border with Thailand over the weekend.

The insurgency is the biggest challenge the Myanmar junta has faced since it mounted a coup against an elected government in 2021.

"The current regime is starting to lose some strength," Srettha said in an interview on the resort island of Samui on Sunday, adding, "but even if they are losing, they have the power, they have the weapons."

"Maybe it's time to reach out and make a deal," he said.

Thailand has been pursuing multiple engagements with Myanmar since Srettha came to power last August, including delivering aid to Myanmar under a humanitarian initiative aimed at paving the way for talks between warring camps.

The Thai parliament also hosted a seminar last month on the political situation in Myanmar that included the appearance of opponents of the Myanmar's military, despite the junta's objection.

Srettha said Myanmar was very important for Thailand and he and other Thai officials have been talking to various stakeholders in Myanmar and international partners including China and the US.

"The country that stands to gain most if Myanmar becomes unified, peaceful and prosperous is Thailand," Srettha said.

The Thai Prime Minister said he is planning to talk internally to cabinet ministers, senior military and security officials on Tuesday to streamline government policies on Myanmar.

"I'm meeting with five or six people who are the key players and make sure that we are on the same page," he said.