Annan to work for Aung San Suu Kyi's release

Annan believes Myanmar junta has missed a chance to confirm, through concrete actions, its expressed commitment to democracy.

india Updated: May 31, 2006 11:57 IST

The United Nations has vowed to continue working for the release of Myanmar democracy leader Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, whose house arrest the country's military Junta has extended.

"Despite this setback, the international community cannot abandon the search for improvements in the difficult situation in Myanmar," Secretary-General Kofi Annan said in a statement.

Annan's statement comes in the backdrop of the Myanmar's military government spurning the direct appeal by him to head of the State Senior General Than Shwe to release the pro-democracy leader who has spent ten of the last sixteen years in detention.

This has raised questions about effectiveness of the United Nations in negotiating her release, especially as the detention was extended within days of Annan's special envoy seeking her release during the high level talks he had.

Annan believes Myanmar's leadership has "missed a significant opportunity to confirm, through concrete actions, its expressed commitment to move toward true national reconciliation and all-inclusive democracy, as well as improved relations with the international community," his spokesman said in reply to questions on Tuesday.

Annan, he said, would continue not only to make every effort to secure the release of Suu Kyi and other political detainees, but also to urge the authorities to take other steps they discussed with Under-Secretary-General for Political Affairs Ibrahim Gambari during his recent visit to the country.

First Published: May 31, 2006 11:32 IST