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US says it maintains dual track policy on Myanmar

The US maintains a dual track policy on Myanmar of principled engagement and continuation of sanctions.



Washington: The US maintains a dual track
policy on Myanmar of principled engagement and continuation of
sanctions, the Obama administration has said, a day after its
officials held a meeting with the country`s Foreign Minister.

Myanmar`s Foreign Minister Wunna Maung Lwin visited the
Foggy Bottom headquarters of the State Department on Thursday
to hold talks with US Special Representative and Policy
Coordinator for Myanmar, Ambassador Derek Mitchell, and
Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific
Affairs, Kurt Campbell.

The State Department yesterday described the meeting as
"productive", which among others was also attended by
Assistant Secretary of State for Democracy, Human Rights and
Labour, Michael Posner.

"This meeting reflects the US` commitment to principled
engagement and the Burmese government`s willingness to discuss
our core concerns including human rights, political prisoners,
democracy, national reconciliation and non-proliferation,
which are critical to improving the US-Burma bilateral
relationship," it said.

This was the second meeting between the two sides in a
week`s time. The last one was held in New York on the
sidelines of the UN General Assembly session.

Mitchell had held talks with the Myanmarese leaders
during his recent trip to Nay Pyi Taw.

Earlier this week, Deputy Secretary of State Williams J
Burns had asked India to use its influence over Myanmar to
bring in changes in the country.

"Across the board, we hope India recognises that with
increased power comes increased responsibility -- including
the recognition, in the spirit of Gandhi, that an assault on
human rights and freedom in one place is an assault on human
rights and freedom everywhere," Burns had said.

Recent weeks have seen encouraging signs from Myanmar,
including a new embrace of the language of reform, he had said
in his remarks on India-US relationship at a gathering jointly
organised by the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and
Industry (FICCI) and the Brookings Institute, a
Washington-based eminent American think-tank.

"Then-Foreign Secretary (Nirupama) Rao`s meeting with
Aung San Suu Kyi earlier this year was an important step, and
we hope that the Indian government will use its close ties in
Burma to encourage concrete action on political and economic
reform and national reconciliation," Burns had said.

PTI

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