Friday, June 3, 2011

Burmese vice president says Burma’s nuclear program has been halted

Friday, 03 June 2011 15:12 Mizzima News

(Mizzima) – The Burmese vice president told US Sen. John McCain that the country’s nuclear programme has been halted because international countries might misunderstand the issue, according to a state-run newspaper.

Vice President Thiha Thura U Tin Aung Myint Oo, left.
Photo : Mizzima
Vice President Thiha Thura U Tin Aung Myint Oo and McCain met at the presidential office in Naypyitaw on Thursday afternoon, according to the New Light of Myanmar newspaper. McCain was on a three-day official visit to the country.

‘Burma made arrangements for nuclear research with the assistance of Russia in order that Burma would not lag behind other countries in that field and to improve its education and health sectors. Burma is in no position to build nuclear weapons and does not have enough economic strength to do so’, the state-run newspaper quoted the vice president as saying.

The newspaper also reported that the vice president said that Burma had relations with all countries including North Korea, but after the UN adopted resolution No. 1718 and 1874, Burma has been abiding by the provisions of the resolutions as a UN member.

In the meeting, McCain noted that there were more than 2,000 political prisoners in the country, and he asked the government to allow the International Committee of the Red Cross to visit political prisoners, according to the newspaper.

The vice president reportedly answered that Burma previously had an arrangement with the Red Cross, but that it has since been denied permission to work in the country. He said Burma would take into account the senator’s request

McCain told the vice president that Aung San Suu Kyi would travel outside Rangoon in June, and he hoped that she would be allowed to travel freely and safely. The vice president reportedly said that Suu Kyi was considered to be an ordinary civilian and the government would not prohibit her from doing any activities in accordance with the law, but the government had to give priority to the stability and peace of the state.

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