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Myanmar: Secretary-General convenes ‘Group of Friends’ meeting

Myanmar: Secretary-General convenes ‘Group of Friends’ meeting

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today convened a meeting of the 14 Member States known as the “Group of Friends” to review developments in Myanmar, where the Government forcefully cracked down on peaceful protesters last year.

The Group of Friends – comprising Australia, China, France, India, Indonesia, Japan, Norway, Russia, Singapore, Thailand, the United Kingdom, the United States, Vietnam and Slovenia (as holder of the European Union presidency) – met today for the second time following their first gathering last December.

Mr. Ban’s Special Adviser Ibrahim Gambari plans to travel to the region shortly, and will visit Beijing from 18-19 February, followed by stops in Jakarta and Singapore.

Earlier this week, the Secretary-General called on Myanmar to ensure that the constitutional referendum scheduled to be held in May represents the views of all of the South-East Asian nation’s people.

He “renews his call to the Myanmar authorities to make the constitution-making process inclusive, participatory and transparent in order to ensure that any draft constitution is broadly representative of the views of all the people of Myanmar,” according to a statement issued by his spokesperson.