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UN Human Rights Council Condemns Burma's 'Violent Repression' of Protesters


The United Nations Human Rights Council has condemned the Burmese military government for its "violent repression" of peaceful opposition protests.

The 47 member states of the Geneva-based Council on Tuesday passed a resolution by consensus that deplores "beatings, killings and arbitrary detentions" carried out by Burmese security forces. Portuguese Ambassador Francisco Xavier Esteves submitted the resolution, saying the Council cannot remain silent in the face of such shocking events.

Earlier, the top U.N. human rights official, Louise Arbour, called on Burma to give a "full account" of the number of protesters killed and wounded in the crackdown last week.

Also Tuesday, Burma's military ruler General Than Shwe met with U.N. special envoy Ibrahim Gambari in the new capital, Naypyitaw, after days of delay. Gambari then returned to Rangoon for his second meeting in a week with detained pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi. No details about the talks were released.

Gambari was expected to try to persuade Burma's generals to stop their repression of protesters, release detainees and make progress toward democratic reforms.

After his talks with Aung San Suu Kyi, Gambari left Burma for Singapore. He travels later to New York to report on his mission to U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.

The U.N.'s Arbour urged Burma to provide information on the whereabouts and condition of thousands of protesters who the U.N. says have been arrested. She expressed concern about the disappearance of Burmese monks who led the protests.

The highest-ranking U.S. diplomat in Burma, Shari Villarosa says her staff visited several monasteries and found some of them empty, while others were surrounded by Burmese troops.

Burma's leaders have said that 10 people died last week during the crackdown, and they blamed the uprising on "political opportunists." Burmese dissident groups say up to 200 protesters were killed.


Information for this news is provided by ap, afp and reuters.

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