Today in New Delhi, India
Sep 21, 2018-Friday
-°C
New Delhi
  • Humidity
    -
  • Wind
    -

Myanmar polls labelled 'farce' by Philippines

World leaders are expected to launch a last-ditch plea this week for free and fair elections in military-run Myanmar, but at least one neighbouring Southeast Asian country has already dismissed the upcoming polls as a "farce."

world Updated: Oct 27, 2010 23:52 IST
AP

World leaders are expected to launch a last-ditch plea this week for free and fair elections in military-run Myanmar, but at least one neighbouring Southeast Asian country has already dismissed the upcoming polls as a "farce."

Aside from reclusive Myanmar, China is expected to take centre stage at an annual summit of leaders of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations following a series of territorial spats that has rattled regional nerves.

Myanmar’s much-anticipated November 7 elections are supposed to be a move forward in the country’s so-called roadmap to democracy following five decades of military rule. But critics say the junta has already taken steps to block transparency and ensure that the military remains in power by repressing the country’s main opposition party and limiting campaigning. "It’s a farce," Philippine Foreign Secretary Alberto Romulo said ahead of the ASEAN summit.

No foreign journalists or outside observers will be allowed into the country for the election, the first in two decades.

The main opposition party, led by democracy icon Aung San Suu Kyi, is boycotting the elections after winning a landslide victory in 1990 that was dismissed by the military leaders.

That leaves the key junta-backed party as the only strong contender to win the contest.

First Published: Oct 27, 2010 23:49 IST