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Philippine Rights Groups Slam Visit by Burmese PM


Human rights groups in the Philippines condemned Saturday the scheduled visit of Burmese Prime Minister Lieutenant General Soe Win.

The Initiatives for International Dialogue (IDD) and the Free Burma Coalition-Philippines said the Philippines should uphold its democratic tenets and pressure Soe Win, the leading member of Burma's ruling military, to start democratic reforms.

IDD executive director Gus Miclat said the people of the Philippines do not support dictatorships and ousted two presidents who were corrupt and undemocratic.

In a statement, he said that commitment to democracy should be reflected in Manila's dealings with Burma Soe Win is expected to arrive in Manila on Sunday and is scheduled to meet with President Gloria Arroyo and Foreign Affairs Secretary Alberto Romulo on Monday.

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