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SE Asian Leaders in Burma for Econ Talks - 2003-11-10


Leaders of three Southeast Asian nations have arrived in Burma for talks on improving regional economic ties.

Thailand, Laos, Cambodia and Burma will be represented at the talks. Thai Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra said before leaving home that his country wants to discuss ways of helping its poorer neighbors develop.

Discussions about Burma's crackdown on its pro-democracy movement are not on the agenda. But Mr. Thaksin said he will talk to Burma's ruling generals about national reconciliation.

The Thai leader said he believes that economic aid to Burma can help ease political tensions, eventually leading to the restoration of democracy. He and his regional counterparts are expected to sign a number of economic deals in areas such as trade, agriculture, tourism, communications and transportation.

Information for this report is provided by AP.

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