US senator to meet Suu Kyi on Myanmar trip: Official

A US senator is to meet detained democracy icon Aung San Suu Kyi and her colleagues as well as members of Myanmar`s junta during a visit to the military-ruled country starting on Thursday, officials have said.

Yangon: A US senator is to meet detained
democracy icon Aung San Suu Kyi and her colleagues as well as
members of Myanmar`s junta during a visit to the
military-ruled country starting on Thursday, officials have said.

Democratic lawmaker Jim Webb, who last year secured the
release of an American jailed for swimming to Suu Kyi`s home,
was due to arrive in the administrative capital Naypyidaw
today evening.
"He will meet the prime minister and related officials,"
a Myanmar official, who asked not to be named, told AFP.

"He will meet politicians and Daw Aung San Suu Kyi before
he leaves," the official added. Daw is a term of respect in
Myanmar. Webb is due to fly out of economic hub Yangon, where
Suu Kyi is under house arrest, on Saturday night.

His visit comes ahead of elections planned in the
Southeast Asian country for the end of this year, which
critics have dismissed as a sham due to laws that have
effectively barred opposition leader Suu Kyi from
participating.
Suu Kyi`s party, the National League for Democracy (NLD),
was dissolved last month after refusing to re-register as a
political party, a move that would have forced it to expel its
own leader because she is serving a prison term.

Seven senior members of the dissolved NLD will meet Webb,
a strong supporter of engaging Myanmar, on Saturday afternoon
in Yangon.

"We hope for small changes because of his visit," said
NLD spokesman Nyan Win, without giving further details.

PTI

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