11 Facts About Thant Myint-U


Thant Myint-U is an American-born Burmese historian, writer, grandson of former United Nations Secretary-General U Thant, former UN official, and former special adviser to the president for the peace process.


Thant Myint-U has authored five books, including The River of Lost Footsteps: A Personal History of Burma and Where China Meets India: Burma and the New Crossroads of Asia.


Thant Myint-U founded the Yangon Heritage Trust in 2012 to protect colonial architecture and lobby for urban planning in the Burmese commercial capital of Yangon.


Thant Myint-U was born in New York City to Burmese parents.


Thant Myint-U grew up in Riverdale, Bronx at the home of his maternal grandfather, the then-Secretary-General of the United Nations U Thant.


Thant Myint-U first served as a human rights officer from 1992 to 1993 at the UN Transitional Authority for Cambodia in Phnom Penh.


Thant Myint-U worked first at the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, then at the United Nations Department of Political Affairs, and at the Policy Planning Unit as a chief in 2004.


Thant Myint-U has written opt-in pieces for The New York Times, The Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times the International Herald Tribune, the London Review of Books, the New Statesman, the Far Eastern Economic Review, Time and The Times Literary Supplement.


Thant Myint-U was awarded the "Asia Pacific Awards" "Special Prize" in November 2014 for Where China Meets India.


Thant Myint-U was voted 15th in Prospect magazine's annual online poll of the "World's Leading Thinkers" in 2014 in a list which feature many notable Indians including Kaushik Basu.


Thant Myint-U gained Burmese citizenship in 2011 and is a Myanmar national.