Friday, March 23, 2012

UN chief to visit Myanmar "probably" next month in April

SINGAPORE: UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said Friday he will visit Myanmar "probably" next month as he urged international support for reforms in the country.

"I have visited Myanmar twice as secretary general, and I am going to visit Myanmar soon, probably next month," he said in a lecture to government officials, diplomats and academics during a visit to Singapore.

Ban had said in Malaysia on Thursday his visit to Myanmar will likely be after the by-elections scheduled for April 1, but he did not give a specific timeframe.

Ban said he was "encouraged" by recent reforms implemented by President Thein Sein and urged the global community to help Myanmar as it prepares to assume the rotating leadership of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations in 2014.

"Myanmar still faces many challenges and will need our support along the way," he said.

The by-elections, which will see Nobel laureate Aung San Suu Kyi stand for a seat in parliament for the first time, come a year after a quasi-civilian government took power following the end of decades of military rule.

- AFP/wm

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Source From Channel News Asia

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