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UK to raise Myanmar issue with India

Britain indicates that its Prime Minister Gordon Brown will seek to exhort India to do more on the issue during his upcoming visit.

delhi Updated: Jan 18, 2008 19:57 IST

Insisting that Myanmar's movement towards democracy was not "significant"; Britain on Friday indicated that its Prime Minister Gordon Brown would seek to exhort India to do more on the issue during his upcoming visit.

British High Commissioner Sir Richard Stagg said his country favours a "carrot and stick" policy with regard to Myanmar as he suggested that London and New Delhi differed on how to reach the "end point" though both agree on the "route".

Brown will raise the issue of Myanmar during his talks with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and express "our concern that the process launched (there) does not seem to be moving forward significantly," Stagg said while briefing reporters on the visit beginning on Sunday.

Refusing to predict what the specific content of discussions between Singh and Brown on Myanmar would be, he said "we are open to dialogue with India as we acknowledge difference of views" with New Delhi on the subject.

"We believe the present situation in Myanmar is unstable and will not continue indefinitely in future," Stagg said, underlining "the greater need for international pressure to move the regime in Burma to take reforms seriously."

Acknowledging the "difference of views" with India on the methodology to ensure democracy in Myanmar, he said New Delhi is for "rather slower approach but headed down the same route to same destination".

India has been opposing use of coercion against Myanmar to bring about democracy there and favours a dialogue to resolve the issue.