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UN envoy Nambiar asks Myanmar junta to address global concerns

The UN special envoy to Myanmar, Vijay Nambiar, has pressed the country's ruling military junta to address global concerns over the recent elections here to lay the foundation for a "credible transition" to democracy and national reconciliation.

world Updated: Nov 29, 2010 16:46 IST

The UN special envoy to Myanmar, Vijay Nambiar, has pressed the country's ruling military junta to address global concerns over the recent elections here to lay the foundation for a "credible transition" to democracy and national reconciliation.

Wrapping up his two-day visit here, Nambiar, who is also UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon's chief of staff, told reporters that he has urged the Myanmar government and the Union Election Commission to address as transparently as possible the concerns about the process and outcome of November 7 elections.

"Strong concerns are expressed by many parties about the process and outcome of the recent elections which I have urged the government and the Union Election Commission to address as transparently as possible," Nambiar said yesterday. "This is important for laying the foundation for a credible transition (to democracy)," he said.

The military has ruled Myanmar since 1962 and the recent elections were widely criticised as sham, with alleged vote-rigging in favour of the military-backed Union Solidarity and Development Party, which received a sweeping majority in both houses of Parliament.

Nambiar, a former Indian diplomat who was appointed UN special envoy to Myanmar earlier this year, also called for the government to release "some of the political prisoners who remain in detention." He said he listened to as many parties as possible about their "hopes, expectations and concerns at this critical juncture" following the polls and the release of opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi from house arrest.

"In order to succeed, any political transition should be broad-based and inclusive and involve not only those who participated in the elections but also those who could not or did not.

In this connection, I also call for the release of some of the political prisoners who remain in detention," Nambiar was quoted as saying by Kyodo news agency. Nambiar, who arrived in Myanmar on Saturday, met Suu Kyi for about 90 minutes, exchanging views on the current political situation.

He termed the meeting as "very valuable" but emphasised that many such meetings would be required to sort out all the problems facing the country.