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CFSP Statement
Declaration of the Presidency on behalf of the European Union at the reconvening of the national convention in Burma/Myanmar

Date of release : 15-02-2005

Policy area : General Affairs and External Relations

The European Union notes that the National Convention will reconvene on 17 February 2005, and strongly hopes to see concrete results. In this connection the EU calls on the State Peace and Development Council (SPDC) to put aside past hostilities and enter into a constructive dialogue with the National League for Democracy (NLD), other legitimate representative bodies and the ethnic groups. Only such a dialogue can lead to the drawing up of a constitution that can win the true support of the people and bring peace and development to the country. Only if it adopts this approach will the Government be able to arrive at real and lasting national reconciliation and to honour its commitments vis à vis the international community contained in its roadmap annoucing the "building of a modern, prosperous, democratic nation."

The EU regrets that the SPDC has not yet created the necessary conditions for participation by the NLD and other legitimate representative bodies in the National Convention, which will reconvene on the 17 February and which could provide an opportunity for genuine transparent dialogue. These conditions include lifting the house arrest of Aung San Suu Kyi, reopening all the offices of the NLD and releasing all political prisoners, including the elected representatives of the opposition parties.

In this connection, the EU is very concerned at the arrest on 9 February of Khun Htun Oo, president of the Shan National League Democracy Party, together with other leaders of the Shan community, and at the increased harassment of the leaders of other ethnic national groups. The EU calls for a stop to all such restrictive treatment.

The EU calls on the Burmese authorities to establish permanent and sincere cooperation with the UN Secretary General's Special Envoy and with all the UN agencies involved.

The EU takes this opportunity to emphasise that, as envisaged in Council Common position 2004/730/CFSP of 25 October 2004, it could respond positively to concrete signs of progress and that it is already committed to the reduction of poverty and the promotion of democratisation in Burma/Myanmar.

The Acceding Countries Bulgaria and Romania, the Candidate Countries Turkey and Croatia*, the Countries of the Stabilisation and Association Process and potential candidates Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Serbia and Montenegro, and the EFTA countries Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway, members of the European Economic Area, align themselves with this declaration.

* Croatia continues to be part of the Stabilisation and Association Process

This page was last modified on : 16-02-2005

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