Myanmar opposition leader and former dissident Aung San Suu Kyi is to lead a delegation to China for the first time next week.
According to China Daily, President Xi Jinping and Premier Li Keqiang will meet Suu Kyi, who heads Myanmar’s National League for Democracy, during the trip from June 10 to 14.
The visit comes amid strained ties between the two neighbors over conflicts near their border and months ahead of a general election in Myanmar. Earlier this year in March, a bomb launched by the Myanmar Air Force landed in Yunnan, killing four and injuring a further nine.
On Friday, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei hailed exchanges between China and various parties in Myanmar, saying he hoped such communication can be strengthened.
Xu Liping, an expert on Southeast Asian affairs at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, said that after some setbacks, Beijing is “seeking an environment” for its investment in Myanmar.
Xu believes that whether or not Suu Kyi’s pro-democracy party wins in the upcoming general election, she exerts a huge influence on the country. “The message from Suu Kyi to the world is that her party, if elected, will sustain traditional ties and upgrade cooperation with China.”
By Dominic Jackson