Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

EYE ON AFRICA

Benin feels the pinch of Nigeria's economic woes

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

Deutsche Bank shares recover after turbulent week

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Inside Aleppo: 'Feels like prison'

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The Legacy of Shimon Peres, The Battle of Aleppo (Part 1)

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

Trump-Clinton Debate, Colombia Peace Deal, Death of the BlackBerry (Part 2)

Read more

FRANCE IN FOCUS

Backstage at Paris Fashion Week

Read more

FASHION

Paris Fashion Week: Saint Laurent, Lanvin, present new designers

Read more

#THE 51%

Online and proud: Iranian women use social media in a campaign for equality

Read more

#TECH 24

Say hello to Pepper!

Read more

Asia-pacific

US to begin exchanging ambassadors with Burma

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2012-01-13

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said Friday the United States will "start the process" of exchanging ambassadors with Burma after almost two decades following recent reforms by Yangon, including the release of hundreds of political prisoners.

AFP - US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said Friday that the United States is moving toward exchanging ambassadors with Myanmar, as a reward for reforms by the military-backed government.

Echoing President Barack Obama in hailing the release of political prisoners, Clinton said she is also instructing State Department officials to identify "further steps" Washington can take to support the reforms.

"In consultation with members of Congress and at the direction of President Obama, we will start the process of exchanging ambassadors with Burma," Clinton said in a statement.

"We will identify a candidate to serve as US ambassador to represent the United States government and our broader efforts to strengthen and deepen our ties with both the people and the government," the chief US diplomat added.

She said the effort will be a "lengthy process" that depends on continued reforms, saying she was fulfilling her promise to "meet action for action" that she made during a landmark visit last month to Myanmar, also known as Burma.

Myanmar and the United States have diplomatic relations but the head of the US mission in Myanmar is a charge d'affaires, a step below ambassador.

Clinton said she would telephone Myanmar President Thein Sein and opposition leader and democracy icon Aung Sang Suu Kyi at the weekend to show American commitment in support of reforms being undertaken.

Clinton also said she "warmly" welcomes the ceasefire agreement signed this week between Myanmar and Karen rebels, who have been fighting one of the world's longest-running civil conflicts.

She also urged "the government to enter into meaningful dialogue with all ethnic groups."

In hailing the prisoner releases, Clinton said "this is a momentous day for the diverse people" of the Southeast Asian nation.

Myanmar earlier pardoned prominent dissidents, journalists and a former premier under a major prisoner amnesty, intensifying a surprising series of reforms by the army-backed regime.

The amnesty included members of the "88 Generation Students" group, which is synonymous with the democratic struggle in Myanmar and was at the forefront of a failed 1988 uprising in which thousands died.
 

Date created : 2012-01-13

  • BURMA

    Burma releases hundreds of political prisoners

    Read more

  • BURMA

    Clinton caps historic Burma trip with Suu Kyi meeting

    Read more

  • BURMA

    Suu Kyi's opposition party to regain legal status

    Read more

COMMENT(S)