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UN Rights Expert Urges Int'l Pressure On Burma


UN Rights Expert Urges International Pressure on Burma

The United Nations human rights expert for Burma, Paulo Sergio Pinheiro, says the international community must talk less and act more to pressure Burma's military leaders towards reform.

Paulo Sergio Pinheiro spoke to journalists Wednesday following his recent trip to Burma, where he says authorities allowed him to meet privately with five prisoners.

He will deliver a report on his findings to the U.N. Human Rights Council next month.

Earlier Wednesday, U.N. envoy to Burma, Ibrahim Gambari said his role in helping resolve Burma's political crisis needs to be bolstered.

Speaking with some Asian leaders, Gambari said that he needs to test Burma's willingness to live up to its pledge to work with the world body.

Gambari was originally scheduled to deliver a formal briefing on his efforts to resolve the crisis at a summit of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations and other Asian leaders this week. But that briefing was called off amid opposition from Burma, which is a member of ASEAN.

Gambari has visited Burma twice since the military government's violent September crackdown on pro democracy and anti-government protesters that killed at least 15 people.

Separately, Philippine President Gloria Arroyo spoke out against Burma and the continued detention of Nobel laureate Aung San Suu Kyi.

Ms. Arroyo urged ASEAN leaders to actively promote reforms in Burma.

ENDS

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