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Ministerial Meeting of the Secretary-General’s Group of Friends on Myanmar

Earlier today, the Secretary-General convened a ministerial meeting of his Group of Friends on Myanmar to discuss recent developments in the country. The Ministers welcomed the remarkable gains which the country continued to make in the areas of democratization, national development and national reconciliation.  Welcoming the presence of the Myanmar delegation at the meeting for the first time, members saw this as a further reflection of the positive developments.   The Ministers expressed confidence that Myanmar would continue to make progress toward a robust democratic system with the active participation of civil society.   

Whilst noting the major transformations taking place in the country, many delegations also emphasized the urgent need to address the underlying causes that led to the communal violence that erupted in various parts of the country.  They reiterated their view that if this was not done, it could potentially undermine the reform process in the country. The Group also underscored the importance of addressing urgently the political and economic grievances of the Rohingyas, including the question of their citizenship.

It was highlighted that international support for Myanmar needed to be constructive and coordinated in a manner that would add value to the reform process.  On its part, the Group discussed the need to reconfigure its own role and functions so that it could support Myanmar in addressing its reforms and challenges as a ‘Partnership Group for Peace, Development and Democracy in Myanmar.’  The Secretary-General reiterated that the United Nations system as a whole would continue to support the Government and people of Myanmar during this critical phase in its transition.

Cr. Win Mit
Report by Natalie P.Srisutcharit, EBC News

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