SP: Burma not welcome at EU-Asia summit

27 July 2006

SP: Burma not welcome at EU-Asia summit

SP Member of Parliament and foreign affairs spokesman Harry van Bommel has asked Foreign Minister Ben Bot for an explanation of why representatives of Burma (Myanmar) have been invited for the ASEM Summit meeting between Asian and EU leaders to be held on 10th September. “The Burmese junta has not been invited to international gatherings and must not be invited to this one," Mr Van Bommel said.

Harry van Bommel As a consequence of the political and human rights situation in the country, it has been agreed by the EU authorities not to invite representatives of the Burmese junta to international meetings. Those in power in Burma have scant regard for human rights and democracy. Nobel Prize winning oppositionist Aung San Suu Kyi remains under house arrest. Yet the Finnish government, in its role as the current holder of the EU's rotating presidency, has invited the Burmese foreign minister to participate in the ASEM summit. “Nothing has happened which should change European policy in relation to Burma's junta," Harry van Bommel said. "In my view the Netherlands must send a clear signal: if Burma comes, Ben Bot doesn't."

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