YANGON, Myanmar — Pope Francis begins his first full day in Myanmar traveling to the country’s capital Tuesday to meet with the civilian leader, Nobel laureate Aung San Suu Kyi, a day after hosting the military general in charge of the crackdown on the country’s Muslim Rohingya minority.

Francis’ speech to Suu Kyi, other Myanmar authorities and the diplomatic corps in Naypyitaw is the most anticipated of his visit, given the outcry over the crackdown, which the U.S. and U.N. have described as a campaign of “ethnic cleansing” to drive out the Rohingya from northern Rakhine state.

The operation, launched in August after Rohingya militants attacked security posts, has sent more than 620,000 Rohingya into neighboring Bangladesh, where they have reported entire villages were burned and looted, and women and girls were raped.

Myanmar’s Catholic leaders have stressed that Suu Kyi has no voice to speak out against the military over the operation, and have urged continued support for her efforts to move Myanmar toward a more democratic future that includes all its religious minorities, Christians in particular. How Francis bridges the local Catholic concerns with his legacy of speaking out for oppressed minorities is the key to watch in his speech.

Francis dove into the crisis hours after arriving on Monday by meeting with the commander responsible for the crackdown, Gen. Min Aung Hlaing, and three members of the bureau of special operations. The Vatican didn’t provide details of the contents of the 15-minute “courtesy visit,” only to say that “They spoke of the great responsibility of the authorities of the country in this moment of transition.”