ASEAN representatives to visit Myanmar

Representatives of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations are expected to visit Myanmar on Thursday at the earliest, as part of efforts to end the violence there.

Those who will be visiting are Erywan Yusof, the second foreign minister of Brunei, which currently holds ASEAN's rotating chair, and its secretary-general Lim Jock Hoi, also from Brunei.

The schedule and aim of the visit have not been made public. ASEAN diplomatic sources say they are expected to hold talks with Myanmar's military leaders about sending an envoy to the country.

The move comes more than a month after ASEAN leaders, including Myanmar's military chief who led the coup there, met in Indonesia and reached a five-point consensus on the situation in Myanmar.

The consensus called for an immediate end to the violence and a visit to Myanmar by an ASEAN envoy to mediate between the junta and anti-military groups.

But there has been no sign the agreement will be realized as the number of civilians killed in the crackdown by Myanmar's forces continues to rise.

The junta has so far shown a reluctance to swiftly implement the consensus and says it will accept a visit by an envoy once stability is restored in Myanmar.

ASEAN members are divided over how to choose the envoy. Indonesia's foreign minister Retno Marsudi on Wednesday called on ASEAN to immediately appoint a special envoy.