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Regional youth delegates to meet with Asean leaders

Delegates to the first-ever Asean Youth Forum will also meet with the heads of governments from Asean member countries, youth organisers told a press conference promoting the forum held at the Diamond Jubilee Hall of Yangon University last Wednesday.

"We will select 20 youths among those who attended the Asean Youth Forum to come to the Asean Summit in Myanmar during the second week of May. The selected youths will have a chance to meet Asean leaders who will be attending the summit. We plan to hold a 45-minute programme at the summit, an 'interface meeting'.

"We have already talked about what matters will be discussed and what facts will be presented during the 'interface meeting'," said Thet Swe Win, a member of the Forum Observance Committee.

As this year's chair of Asean, Myanmar will have a chance to hold the Asean Youth Forum, an event expected to bring together 300 youth delegates from Asean states. The Asean Youth Forum and Asean People's Forum are planned before the first Asean Summit to be held in May. The results of the forums will be presented and discussed at the Asean Summit.

Since 2009, the country holding the Asean chair has hosted a youth forum. The Seventh Asean Youth Forum, hosted by Myanmar, is being arranged by the national youth network and 35 other youth associations.

In the past, the AUF's results have been released as a statement and the youths have met only with their own governments. This year, the forum is being organised by civic organisations, including the national youth network, and the forum results will be submitted to Asean leaders for the first time.

When Asean youth delegates meet with Asean leaders, they will have a chance to report on and talk freely about regional youth issues such as the job shortage, problems in the education system and similar challenges that youth face throughout the Asean region.

Myanmar hosted the first Asean Youth Forum event at the Diamond Jubilee Hall of Yangon University from March 17-19.

A total of 205 youths from Asean countries, including 92 delegates representing Myanmar, attended the forum. Discussion centred on issues such as the role of youths in peace and reconciliation processes and the education systems of Asean countries.






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