Sinapan Samdorai, the convenor of the Task Force on Asean Migrant Workers in Singapore, said his government refused to sanction his presence at the meeting.
He told The Irrawaddy, "Singapore has adopted Asean’s lowest common denominator here, by aping the anti-democratic tactics used by the Burmese junta."
Despite the fanfare, the real worth of the AICHR already has been widely questioned. Since the terms of reference for the body were announced earlier this year, the AICHR has been criticized for having a limited mandate.
Aung Din, the executive director of the US Campaign for Burma who testified before the US House Committee on Foreign Affairs on Oct. 21, told The Irrawaddy, "It will be run by government officials. Burma, along with Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia and Brunei, will resist and block any meaningful action proposed by other more open members."