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  16 Aug 2022, 10:52

UN envoy makes first visit to Myanmar

YANGON, Aug 16, 2022 (BSS/AFP) - The UN's new special envoy for Myanmar began

her first trip to the country Tuesday, a day after a junta court sentenced
ousted civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi to six more years in jail for
corruption.

Noeleen Heyzer "will focus on addressing the deteriorating situation and
immediate concerns as well as other priority areas of her mandate," according
to a UN statement issued late Monday.

It did not give details on who she would meet among the junta's top
leadership or whether she would seek to meet Suu Kyi.

On Monday Suu Kyi received another prison term in a secretive junta court,
taking her total jail time to 17 years.

Heyzer is expected to hold meetings in the military-built capital Naypyidaw,
according to a diplomatic source who did not give further details.

Diplomatic efforts to resolve the crisis led by the UN and the Association of
Southeast Asian Nations regional bloc have made little headway, with the
generals refusing to engage with opponents.

Last month the junta stoked renewed international condemnation when it
executed Phyo Zeya Thaw, a former lawmaker from Suu Kyi's National League for
Democracy party, for offences under anti-terrorism laws.

In response, the UN Security Council -- including junta allies Russia and
China -- issued a rare condemnation of the junta.

Singaporean sociologist Heyzer was appointed by UN Secretary-General Antonio
Guterres last year, replacing Swiss diplomat Christine Schraner Burgener.

Schraner Burgener had called for the UN to take "very strong measures"
against the military and had been the target of regular broadsides in
Myanmar's state-backed media.

Since the coup, the Swiss diplomat had been blocked by the generals from
visiting the country, where she had hoped to meet with Suu Kyi.

In December state media reported the junta had closed her office in the
country "since the activities of Ms Christine Schraner Burgener have
concluded".

It has not yet said whether it will allow Heyzer to open an office.

 

 

 

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