WASHINGTON, July 22 (UPI) -- The U.S. House has approved a one-year renewal of a ban on imports from Myanmar.
In voting to extend the ban, lawmakers cited the oppressive military leadership of the country formerly known as Burma and what the United States and other countries consider a sham trial against Nobel Peace Prize laureate Aung San Suu Kyi, the Voice of America reported Wednesday.
The import ban, in place since 2003, applies to direct or third-country imports of jade and gemstones from Myanmar.
"The junta has ... rejected recent diplomatic outreach which would have been well-received in the global community," Rep. Joseph Crowley, D-N.Y., said on the House floor.
Rep. Kevin Brady, R-Texas, said he thought a multilateral approach was the best hope for change in Myanmar, but that the United States must maintain its sanctions.
"I view import sanctions with great skepticism and always have," Brady said. "But these Burma sanctions are crafted to maximize their ability to effect change."