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Cablegate: Finland On Burma's Flawed Referendum and Burma

VZCZCXRO1807
RR RUEHAG RUEHROV
DE RUEHHE #0206 1331305
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
R 121305Z MAY 08
FM AMEMBASSY HELSINKI
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 4308
INFO RUCNMEM/EU MEMBER STATES COLLECTIVE
RUEHGO/AMEMBASSY RANGOON 0076
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 0092

C O N F I D E N T I A L HELSINKI 000206

SIPDIS

STATE FOR EAP/MLS/ACOPE

E.O. 12958: DECL: 05/06/2018
TAGS: PGOV PHUM BM FI
SUBJECT: FINLAND ON BURMA'S FLAWED REFERENDUM AND BURMA

REF: STATE 45471

Classified By: Pol Officer Lisa Conesa for reasons 1.4 (b) & (d)

1. (SBU) PolOff delivered reftel demarche to Johan
Schalin, Director of the Finnish MFA's Asia and Oceania
Office and Theresa Zitting, First Secretary on May 5.
They said Finland expects Burma to hold and pass the
referendum, albeit probably not May 10 in the face of the
disaster caused by the cyclone. GoF does not welcome these
results. Their statement will be in coordination with the
EU. GoF hopes to emphasize humanitarian efforts. Schalin
stated that GoF currently accepts one-third of their UN
refugee quota from Burma.

2. (C) Schalin specifically noted that they support the
UN's work and special envoy. They believe the UN is the
only organization that could dialogue and strategically
involve the Burmese opposition to change the process and
the regime's seven-step "roadmap to democracy" that the
Burmese are determined to follow. Burmese activists in
Finland will host a conference June 6-7 in Helsinki
including activists, politicians and civil society from
inside and outside Burma. The GoF expects conference
participation from inside Burma based on Visa inquiries.
BARRETT

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