A leading British opposition politician has singled out Burma as one of the most repressive regimes in the world.
In a speech to foreign journalists in London, Liam Fox accused Burma's military of persecuting various minority ethnic groups-Karen and Shan in the country.
Mr. Fox, the top foreign affairs spokesman for Britain's opposition Conservative Party, also questioned whether Burma is qualified to assume the rotating chairmanship next year of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations.
He said Burma has no respect for ASEAN's goals of promoting regional peace and stability through respect for justice and the rule of law.
Burma is scheduled to take over the rotating chairmanship of the regional organization in 2006.