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Burma's New PM to Give First Major Policy Speech - 2003-08-29


Burma's new prime minister is set to give his first major policy speech following this week's surprise cabinet reshuffle.

General Khin Nyunt--one of the most powerful figures in Burma--was newly appointed to the post on Monday. He takes over the position from Burma's number one leader, Than Shwe.

Khin Nyunt is due to address high-ranking government officials in Rangoon Saturday about the recent political changes. It is not clear if he will mention detained opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi. She has been held at a secret location for the last three months, following clashes between her supporters and pro-government youths.

Her detention has led to tightened sanctions by the United States, the European Union and Japan.

Some analysts say the appointment of Khin Nyunt is a welcome sign from the military government. Thailand's Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra says it appears Burma now wants more acceptance from the international community.

Observers say they hope the new prime minister's speech will give them a rare glimpse into the workings of the secretive military state.

Information for this report is provided by VOA Burmese Service and Reuters.

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