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Annan Urges Myanmar To Allow National Convention

Annan Urges Myanmar To Allow Broadest Participation In Constitutional Convention

With Myanmar announcing that it will convene a national convention to draft a new constitution, United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan today urged the government to lift restrictions on democracy leader Daw Aung San Suu Kyi and to allow the broadest participation possible.

A http://www.un.org/apps/sg/sgstats.asp?nid=852 statement issued by a spokesperson for Mr. Annan said the Secretary-General believes that the national convention on 17 May should be all-inclusive for it to be credible.

"He thus urges the Government of Myanmar to lift the remaining restrictions on Daw Aung San Suu Kyi and her senior colleagues in the National League for Democracy (NLD) as soon as possible, and allow the party to participate in the preparations for the reconvening of the National Convention, together with other political parties and ethnic nationality groups," Marie Okabe said.

Mr. Annan also hopes that in order to make themselves ready for the convention all the representatives will be permitted to meet freely together and to conduct peaceful political activities, Ms. Okabe added.

"The Secretary-General believes that the convening of a credible national convention involving all political parties and ethnic groups would mark the beginning of a new phase in Myanmar's political evolution and would result in positive responses from the international community," the statement said.

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