U.N.'s Ban Ki-moon to meet Suu Kyi

April 24, 2012 at 10:32 AM
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UNITED NATIONS, April 24 (UPI) -- Myanmar's political transformation is only beginning and it's time for the international community to stand united by its side, the U.N. secretary-general said.

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said he would visit Myanmar this week. Myanmar received praise from members of the international community since embarking on political reforms that began with general elections in 2010.

"Myanmar is only at the beginning of its transition. Many challenges lie ahead. Many concerns have yet to be addressed," Ban said in a statement. "Yet I am convinced that we have an unprecedented opportunity to help the country advance toward a better future."

The European Union became the latest entity to announce it was suspending some sanctions on Myanmar. Most governments, however, have expressed concerns about the human rights situation in the country, where security is hampered by ethnic divisions.

Former political prisoner and pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi refused to take her seat during a Monday session of Parliament this week, citing concerns about continued military influence in political affairs.

Ban said he plans to meet Suu Kyi, a Nobel Peace Prize laureate, during his visit to Myanmar.

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