Myanmar: Ban reiterates call for authorities to release opposition figure

31 July 2009

Myanmar must ensure the immediate release of the Nobel Peace Prize laureate and opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi, who is in detention and currently facing trial, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has told an official of the Asian country.

Mr. Ban met yesterday at United Nations Headquarters with U Than Swe, Myanmar’s Permanent Representative to the UN, and they discussed the situation concerning Ms. Suu Kyi.

The Secretary-General reiterated his expectation and that of the international community that the Government “will give careful consideration to the implications of any verdict in the trial of Daw Aung San Suu Kyi and exercise its responsibility to ensure her immediate release,” his spokesperson Farhan Haq told journalists today.

“The Secretary-General also reiterated the international community’s high expectations that the Government of Myanmar will act in Myanmar’s interest by taking timely and positive steps in follow-up to the specific proposals which he made during his recent visit to Myanmar, starting with the release of all political prisoners.”

Mr. Haq said that after reporting Mr. Ban’s message to authorities in Myanmar, the Permanent Representative informed the UN that the verdict in the trial – scheduled to be announced today – was being postponed.

Earlier this month Mr. Ban travelled to Myanmar and met with many of the country’s senior officials, but he was not allowed access to Ms. Suu Kyi.


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