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Burma

Volume 447: debated on Thursday 22 June 2006

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent discussions she has held with the governments of (a) Russia, (b) China and (c) Japan on (i) the political situation in Burma and (ii) a binding resolution about Burma at the UN Security Council. (78101)

My right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary has had no discussions about Burma with these governments.

I discussed Burma separately with the vice Foreign Ministers of China and Japan on 20 June. I asked the Chinese Minister that China use its influence to encourage the Burmese Government to meet its human rights responsibilities, and that China supports a Security Council debate and resolution on Burma. I encouraged the Japanese Minister to use any influence that Japan may have to put pressure on the Burmese Government, and asked that Japan support a Security Council debate and Resolution on Burma.

Officials regularly discuss Burma with Russia, China and Japan both in capitals and in New York.

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs (1) what steps her Department is taking to secure the release of Aung San Suu Kyi by the Burmese Government; and if she will make a statement; (78587)

(2) what steps her Department is taking to secure a binding resolution at the UN Security Council calling for (a) the restoration of democracy and (b) the release of all political prisoners by the Burmese Government; and if she will make a statement.

We support all action by the UN which will help initiate a genuine process of democratic reform in Burma. We therefore support the current proposals by the United States for a substantive discussion of Burma at the UN Security Council which we hope will lead to a Resolution.

We condemn the Burmese regime's recent decision to extend Aung San Suu Kyi's house arrest for another year. We have repeatedly called for her release and that of all other prisoners of conscience, most recently when I met the Burmese ambassador on 15 June.

My right hon. Friend the Prime Minister issued a statement on 19 June expressing the Government's concern about the continued detention of Aung San Suu Kyi. It can be found on the following website:

http://www.number10.gov.uk/output/Page9691.asp.