Finnish Prime Minister Matti Vanhanen says European Union officials intend to raise the issue of Burma's human rights situation during European - Asian meetings which begin Sunday in Helsinki.
Mr. Vanhanen told reporters that the European Union had decided to temporarily lift its ban on high-level Burmese officials traveling to Europe to allow Burma's foreign minister to attend the annual Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM).
The prime minister noted that E.U. rules allow for officials from Burma's military government to travel to meetings where human rights are discussed.
Meanwhile, Finnish Foreign Minister Erkki Tuomioja Wednesday condemned Burma's human rights record and lack of progress in making democratic reforms. Finland currently holds the E.U.'s rotating presidency.