UN special envoy meets Myanmar opposition leader again

March 10th, 2008 - 4:39 pm ICT by admin  

Myanmar, March 10 (DPA) UN special envoy Ibrahim Gambari Monday met detained opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi for the second time during his five-day mission to Myanmar. Suu Kyi, leader of National League for Democracy (NLD) party, was taken from her home, where she is being detained, to the Sein Le Kan Tha State Guest House to hold talks with Gambari for about an hour. They also met Saturday.

The content of their talks was not immediately known, but it was unlikely that Gambari had any good news for Suu Kyi, who has been under house arrest since May 2003 and has spent 12 of the past 18 years detained in her family compound in Myanmar.

Gambari, who arrived Thursday, attempted to persuade the ruling junta to move an amendment to a draft constitution that would allow Suu Kyi to contest a general election planned in 2010, but Myanmar authorities flatly turned down the request.

Information Minister and Brigadier General Kyaw Hsan told Gambari Friday the regime rejected a request by UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon that the administration amend the document to “ensure inclusiveness”.

“The constitution has already been drafted, and it should not be amended again,” Kyaw Hsan said, according to state media.

In a letter dated Feb 19 to Myanmar’s military leader, Senior General Than Shwe, the UN secretary general called for amendments to the draft constitution that would drop a clause excluding all Myanmar nationals married to foreigners from running for election.

Suu Kyi, a Nobel Peace laureate and daughter of Myanmar independence hero Aung San, was married to the late Michael Aris, who use to teach at Oxford University.

The new constitution, drafted by a military-appointed forum, is to be put in May to a referendum that is expected to be manipulated.

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