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Malaysian FM Says Burma Likely to Harden Stance in Wake of UN Vote


Malaysia's Foreign Minister Syed Hamid Albar says Burma's military-ruled government is likely to harden its stance in the wake of a recently failed United Nations Security Council resolution demanding faster democratic reforms.

During a meeting with Denmark's foreign minister today in Putrajaya, Syed Hamid Albar said the U.S. resolution may make Burma more hesitant to change and work with the international community.

Syed Hamid Albar said he believes that engagement is a better approach than sanctions. He also said he agrees with the position of China and Russia regarding the UN Security Council resolution, that Burma is not a threat to international peace
and security.

China and Russia vetoed the resolution on Burma when it recently was voted on in the UN Security Council.

The resolution would have urged Burma's military government to release all political prisoners, speed up progress toward democracy, and stop attacks against ethnic minorities.

Burma's military has ruled the country since 1962 and ignored a 1990 landslide election victory by opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi. The Nobel peace laureate has spent most of the past 17 years in detention or under house arrest.

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