Thai Ambassador chairs meeting of ASEAN Ambassadors in Washington and hosts lunch for Senior Officials from the U.S. Administration

On June 2nd, 2015, Ambassador Pisan Manawapat of Thailand chaired the first meeting of ASEAN Committee in Washington (ACW) under Thailand’s chairmanship at the Royal Thai Embassy. Ambassadors and representatives from all 10 countries attended the meeting. Five young Thai interns under the Embassy’s project “Thailand-American National Internship Program” observed the meeting.

The meeting exchanged views on important regional developments of interest for ASEAN and the U.S., such as the recent visits of Deputy Secretary of State Anthony Blinken and Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter to Southeast Asia. The Thai side briefed the meeting about the outcome of the Special Meeting on Irregular Migration in the Indian Ocean hosted by Thailand on May 29th, 2015. The meeting also discussed about the ASEAN Convention against Trafficking in Persons, especially Women and Children, and the annual Trafficking in Persons Report by the State Department.

Mr. Kenneth Myers III, Director of Defense Threat Reduction Agency of the Defense Department, then briefed the meeting about the extensive cooperation throughout Southeast Asia and prospects for further cooperation between the U.S. and ASEAN member states.

After the meeting, the Thai Ambassador hosted a luncheon discussion between ASEAN Ambassadors and Assistant Secretary of State Daniel Russel and other senior officials from the State Department, Defense Department and the National Security Council. During the discussion, Assistant Secretary Russel gave a preview of priorities of the U.S. at the upcoming East Asia Summit and ASEAN Regional Forum senior officials meetings in Malaysia on June 9th – 10th, 2015. Participants also exchanged views on regional developments of mutual concern.

Avanda Amatavivat