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European Union to Strengthen Sanctions on Burma - 2004-10-07


The European Union says it will impose new, tougher sanctions on Burma because its national leaders have ignored E.U. demands that include freeing detained democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi.

Dutch Foreign Minister Bernard Bot, whose country holds the rotating E.U. presidency, said Burma has failed to meet the E.U. deadline of action before the two-day Asia-Europe summit, which opens Friday in the Vietnamese capital, Hanoi.

Speaking in Hanoi, Mr. Bot said European foreign ministers will meet Monday to strengthen the group's sanctions on Burma. These include an expansion of Burmese officials denied visas to E.U. countries, opposition to loans to Burma by international institutions such as the World Bank and a block on financing of Burmese state-owned firms by E.U. companies.

Information for this report is provided by AFP.

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