Myanmar parties join calls to lift sanctions

Two prominent Myanmar opposition parties on Thursday added their voices to calls for Western powers to lift sanctions, as the country prepares for a new parliament after controversial elections.

Last Updated: Jan 20, 2011, 22:31 PM IST

Yangon: Two prominent Myanmar opposition
parties on Thursday added their voices to calls for Western powers
to lift sanctions, as the country prepares for a new
parliament after controversial elections.

The National Democratic Force (NDF) and the Democratic
Party (Myanmar) said the punitive measures were "not
beneficial", echoing calls made by the Association of
Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and other, major ethnic
parties.

Khin Maung Swe, a leader of the NDF, said his party had
asked the United States to review the sanctions.

"There should not be a determination to impose sanctions
to achieve human rights and democracy by neglecting the
development of the country and the people," he said.

Khin Maung Swe called for the termination of all
sanctions, which include penalties imposed by the US, Europe
and other Western nations aimed at members of Myanmar`s junta,
trade restrictions and other measures.

"Trade and investment sanctions are harming the country
and the people, directly or indirectly," he added.

Democratic Party chairman Thu Wai said his party
concurred.

"We have urged all sanctions to be lifted as these are
not beneficial for the people," he said.

Both parties won seats in Myanmar`s controversial
election in November.

PTI