Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi has arrived on his first visit to Myanmar since the military seized power last year to attend a regional meeting that the government said was a recognition of its legitimacy and opponents protested as a violation of peace efforts.
- He will join counterparts from Myanmar, Laos, Thailand, Cambodia, and Vietnam in a meeting of the Lancang-Mekong Cooperation group in the central city of Bagan, a UNESCO World Heritage site.
- The grouping is a Chinese-led initiative that includes the countries of the Mekong Delta, a potential source of regional tensions due to an increasing number of hydroelectric projects that are altering the flow and raising concerns of ecological damage.
- China has built 10 dams along the upper stretch of the Mekong, the part it calls the Lancang.
- The Foreign Minister of Myanmar’s shadow government, which opposes the ruling military council, protested the Bagan meeting, saying any such efforts in partnership with junta violate the will of the people and undermine community building.