By Myanmar NOW

The staging of the 64th Session of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs (CND) from April 12-16 was the latest annual meeting for the Vienna, Austria-based United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), for which the CND serves as the governing body and provides policy guidance.

It would probably have passed out without much notice, except that it served as a coming out of sorts for Myanmar's military junta.

The conference appears to signify the first time that a senior figure in Myanmar’s regime—in this case, Lt-Gen Than Hlaing—has participated in a UN forum since the February 1 coup.

As Myanmar's newly installed deputy minister for home affairs, a department that controls both the police and the Special Branch, Lt-Gen Than Hlaing has played a central role in the ongoing violent crackdown that has seen nearly 3,600 people arrested and more than 766 killed in the country’s blood-stained streets.