A senior United Nations envoy is in Burma to press the country's military government to improve human rights and speed up the restoration of democracy.
Ibrahim Gambari is the first high-ranking U.N. official to be allowed into Burma in more than two years. The Nigerian envoy arrived in Rangoon this Thursday morning at the start of a three day visit.
The U.N.'s top official for political affairs is to hold talks with Burma's military leader, Senior General Than Shwe, on Saturday in the country's new administrative capital, Naypyidaw.
Gambari will meet Friday with senior members of the opposition National League for Democracy at a government building in Rangoon.
A U.N. spokesman says Gambari has asked the military regime for permission to meet the NLD's detained leader, Aung San Suu Kyi, who is under house arrest in Rangoon. But, it is not clear if such a meeting will be allowed.
The U.N. says Gambari will tell Burma's rulers they must make tangible progress in restoring democracy and respecting human rights so as to improve relations with the international community.
Information for this report is provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.