Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Philanthropist George Soros arrives in Burma

Wednesday, 28 December 2011 21:39 Ko Wild

Chiang Mai (Mizzima) – George Soros, the founder of the Open Society Foundation, which works to promote democracy, human rights and freedom in the world, visited Inle Lake in Shan State on Wednesday.

George Soros at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland in 2010.

Win Myint, the Shan State minister for National Race Affairs, told Mizzima he confirmed the information with officials at a hotel in Khaungtia village, where Soros is staying.

George Soros at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland in 2010. Photo:

On whether members of the Shan State government would meet Soros or not, Win Myint said, “We will meet with him only if he invites us.” He said the state government has not been told officials to meet with him or not to meet with him. Khaungtai village is seven miles from Nyaungshwe Township in Shan State.

Soros, 81, arrived in Burma because he wanted to visit Inle Lake and Bagan, two locations where his foundation has made donations, sources said.

He arrived by private plane on December 26. He will leave in early January, a businessman told Mizzima.

“On December 26 and 27, he was in Rangoon and today he went to Inle. His two sons accompanied him. I think it’s his family’s ‘vacation visit’,” he said.

In 1993, Soros founded the U.S.-based Open Society Institute (OSI).

Presently, OSI has branch offices in more than 70 countries in Europe, Asia, Africa and Latin America that promote human rights, education, health and freedom of press. OSI donates about US$ 2 million a year to promote democracy in Burma, according to the Forbes website.

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