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US, Rights Groups to Pressure UN for Action on Burma


The United States says it will ask the United Nations to pressure Burma to change its policies, after Burma last week extended the house arrest of democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi for another year.

State Department spokesman Sean McCormack announced the move Wednesday.

Meanwhile, human rights groups called on the UN Security Council Wednesday to act on Burma's deteriorating human rights situation.

Amnesty International and the US Campaign for Burma both said Burma has failed to improve the situation since the Security Council was briefed on the matter in December.

The groups say human rights in Burma have deteriorated, noting particularly the flight of thousands of ethnic Karen in the eastern part of the country as they tried to avoid persecution by Burmese soldiers. Amnesty says it also continues to receive reports of torture, forced labor, extrajudicial executions, and recruitment of child soldiers.

Information for this report is provided by Reuters and AFP.

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