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UN Security Council Discusses Burma's Latest Situation


The 15 members of the United Nations Security Council met Thursday to discuss the situation in Burma.

The U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, Zalmay Khalilzad, told reporters that the Council is urging Burma's government to allow a visit by U.N. special envoy Ibrahim Gambari "as soon as possible."

Meanwhile, hundreds of Buddhist monks have marched through Rangoon for a third day to demonstrate against Burma's military government.

Several hundred locals joined the monks Thursday as they marched peacefully in the rain from the Shwedagon pagoda to another pagoda in the capital.

The monks have taken the lead in demonstrations that began last month after the government doubled the price of fuel, making transportation difficult for many of Burma's impoverished citizens.

Authorities arrested at least 50 activists in those demonstrations, but have refrained from taking strong action against the monks.

The government acknowledged using tear gas and firing warning shots to break up a protest in Sittwe Tuesday. Authorities refrained from intervening in marches Wednesday.

Monks are highly regarded in the devoutly Buddhist country and are credited with helping rally popular support for a 1988 protest against the government. Security forces ended those demonstrations with deadly force.

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