Tuesday, August 23, 2011

UN chief ‘encouraged’ by Suu Kyi’s Naypyitaw reception

Tuesday, 23 August 2011 16:27 Mizzima News

Chiang Mai (Mizzima) – United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has extended his support for recent talks held between Burmese President Thein Sein and opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi in Burma’s administrative capital of Naypyitaw.

Opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi and Burmese
President Thein Sein met at his office in the
President House. Photo: MRTV
In a statement released on Monday, Ban placed his optimism in the fact that both Thein Sein and Aung San Suu Kyi “expressed satisfaction about their talks aimed at finding common ground on matters beneficial to the people and the country.”

The rendezvous took place on August 19, as Suu Kyi traveled to Naypyitaw to serve as an observer in ongoing discussions about the Burmese economy and poverty alleviation. It was the opposition leader’s first visit to the new capital.

Reiterating his desire to see all political prisoners released, Ban added, “Whether these and other recent developments will move Myanmar [Burma] forward depends on how all parties choose to work with each other.”

In the weeks prior to meeting with President Thein Sein, Suu Kyi had twice met with Aung Kyi, the Minister for Social Welfare, Relief and Resettlement, in talks that both parties said identified common ground.

As part of the ongoing dialogue between government representatives and the opposition leader, agreements were reached allowing Suu Kyi to undergo a weeklong sojourn to the historical region of Bagan in central Burma as well as oversee the opening of two libraries in Pegu (Bago), north of Rangoon.

However, despite apparent developments in dialogue, many Burmese remain skeptical that any tangible progress is being made, instead believing the government is using Suu Kyi in a public relations coup to further state interests such as permission to chair Asean in 2014.

It is unclear exactly when any future talks between government representatives and Suu Kyi will take place.

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