Myanmar removes 2,000 names from blacklist

Aug. 31, 2012 at 12:41 PM
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YANGON, Myanmar, Aug. 31 (UPI) -- A former U.S. secretary of state and exiled Burmese activists are no longer banned from entering Myanmar, officials there say.

Former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright and the two sons of opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi are among 2,000 people the government of Myanmar has removed from a blacklist, CNN reported.

The list of those no longer banned, published in English Wednesday and Thursday, is expansive. It includes journalists such as CNN's Dan Rivers and British investigative reporter John Pilger.

Other politicians now allowed to enter the country include Glenys Kinnock, a former minister for Europe.

Some of those removed are now dead, including former Philippine President Corazon Aquino and singer and congressman Sonny Bono.

Burmese nationals taken off the list will now be allowed to return home. That includes Sein Win, chairman of the "government in exile," the National Coalition Government of the Union of Burma.

The Irrawaddy newspaper reported 4,000 names remain on the list.

In releasing the list Monday, the state-run newspaper New Light of Myanmar said the names were being removed "in accord with the reforming system." In recent months, the former military-run nation has instituted a series of reforms, some of which permitted long-time political activist Suu Kyi to be released from years of house arrest.

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