UN envoy to visit Myanmar to revive junta-opposition talks

U.N. special envoy will visit military-ruled Myanmar next week to try to revive negotiations between the junta and detained opposition leader, officials said.

UN envoy to visit Myanmar to revive junta-opposition talks

U.N. special envoy Ibrahim Gambari will visit military-ruled Myanmar next week to try to revive negotiations between the junta and detained opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi, officials and diplomats said on Saturday.

Gambari was due to meet senior government officials, Suu Kyi's National League for Democracy (NLD) and other political groups during the Jan. 31-Feb. 3 visit, a Foreign Ministry official told Reuters.

It was not known if the Nigerian diplomat would get an audience with junta leader Senior General Than Shwe or Suu Kyi, who remains under house arrest in her Yangon home.

They snubbed Gambari during his eighth visit last year and hopes for a breakthrough this time were low.

"If he doesn't get a chance to meet the Senior General and Aung San Suu Kyi, we can't expect anything out of his visit. Frankly, it's almost in vain," a Yangon-based Asian diplomat said. Last August, Gambari failed twice to meet the Nobel peace laureate, who has been under house arrest for most of the past five years. That prompted speculation she was fed up with the junta's treatment of the emissary and the lack of meaningful dialogue between her party and the regime.

Analysts say the new constitution and the junta's rigid adherence to the "roadmap" leading to elections in 2010 have rendered Gambari's missions virtually pointless.

A spokesman for the NLD, the party that won an election landslide in 1990 only to be denied power by the military, held out little hope for next week's visit.

"We do welcome him again, but we are not sure whether this visit will be fruitful," spokesman Nyan Win said.

Reuters
Last Mod: 24 Ocak 2009, 12:11
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