Thai Foreign Ministry to Investigate Allegations of Thai Banks Supporting Myanmar Military Regime

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Thailand is investigating an allegation by the U.N. special rapporteur that claims Thai banks are the main suppliers for their international financial services to Myanmar’s military government.

The Minister of Foreign Affairs told “Kaohoon” that the authority is investigating the claim and will publish the finding later.

According to a report released on Wednesday by Tom Andrews, the U.N. special rapporteur on the human rights situation in Myanmar, Thai banks have emerged as the primary providers of international financial services to Myanmar’s military government. This support allows the junta to acquire goods and equipment essential for its violent suppression of pro-democracy movements and armed ethnic minority factions.

The report highlights how Myanmar’s military regime has managed to continue procuring arms by adapting its sources of financial services and military equipment after facing sanctions from the U.S., European Union, and other nations. It accuses Thai companies of stepping in to fill the void left by Singaporean firms that ceased businesses with the military junta.

Notably, exports from entities registered in Thailand surged, more than doubling from over $60 million to nearly $130 million from the fiscal year 2022 to 2023. The report specifies that items previously sourced from Singapore-based entities, including components for Mi-17 and Mi-35 helicopters utilized in airstrikes against civilian targets, are now being supplied from Thailand.