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Thailand Offers Mediation On Burma Deadlock - 2003-07-24


The prime minister of Thailand has offered mediation to help secure the release of Burma's jailed opposition leader, Aung San Suu Kyi. Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra told reporters (Thursday) he is willing to take on a mediating role for the sake of democracy in Southeast Asia.

Earlier, his foreign minister Surakiart Sathirathai said Thailand has prepared a "road map" for Burma's military government to release Ms. Aung San Suu Kyi and introduce democracy.

While attending a high-level Asian-European meeting in Indonesia, the minister also suggested convening an international forum to persuade Burma to free the Nobel peace laureate. The two-day meeting ended late Thursday with a joint statement calling for her release.

Burmese police arrested Ms. Aung San Suu Kyi May 30th following a clash between her supporters and pro-government demonstrators. State media have frequently denounced her and her followers in recent weeks.

Thailand, Burma's neighbor, has opposed moves to slap sanctions on the military government following the arrest. Bangkok favors a milder approach than Japan and Western countries, many of which have already imposed sanctions against Rangoon.

Information for this report is provided by AP,AFP and Reuters

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