US, Britain call for more pressure on Myanmar

September 12th, 2008 - 6:41 am ICT by IANS  

New York, Sep 12 (DPA) The US and Britain have called for more pressure on Myanmar to end its defiance of demands for democratic progress and the release of political prisoners, including opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi.US Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad said the UN Security Council should review its mediation, which is being led by special envoy Ibrahim Gambari, and pressure the military government to yield results.

The UN has been demanding that the government hold a political dialogue by all parties for national reconciliation.

It has also called for the release of all political prisoners. But there has been no progress on these two main issues despite four visits by Gambari to Myanmar.

“It’s time to review what is needed to be done more effectively and bring results,” Khalilzad said Thursday following a closed-door session of the 15-nation council, which Gambari attended.

“Pressure should be applied on the regime,” Khalilzad said. “The regime is defying the international community and we believe that there should be a debate to say what is the most effective.”

British Ambassador John Sawers agreed with Khalilzad, saying that Gambari’s diplomatic efforts had been constrained by the military government.

Neither Sawers nor Khalilzad was specific about the kind of pressure they would like to impose on Myanmar.

Gambari told reporters that the Myanmar government has “failed to deliver substantive results.”

He visited Myanmar a fourth time in August to pursue the dialogue on political progress and the release of political prisoners, but obtained no results.

Suu Kyi also refused to meet with him, apparently because he brought no change to the political impasse.

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