Schroeder expects progressfrom Myanmar on human rights

8th October 2004, Comments 0 comments

8 October 2004, HANOI - Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder told delegates at the Asia Europe Meeting (ASEM 5) in Vietnam's capital Friday that Germany expects Myanmar (Burma) to take steps to improve its human rights record, according to delegation members. "We should continue the dialogue about human rights in our countries and apply universal standards," the chancellor told leaders from 38 countries during the first closed session of the summit, according to a delegation source. "With respect to this, we expec

8 October 2004

HANOI - Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder told delegates at the Asia Europe Meeting (ASEM 5) in Vietnam's capital Friday that Germany expects Myanmar (Burma) to take steps to improve its human rights record, according to delegation members.

"We should continue the dialogue about human rights in our countries and apply universal standards," the chancellor told leaders from 38 countries during the first closed session of the summit, according to a delegation source. "With respect to this, we expect further progress from Burma as a new ASEM member."

Myanmar was formally admitted to the fifth Asia-Europe meeting on Thursday night during an enlargement ceremony for three Southeast Asian nations and 10 new EU states.

The admission of the military-ruled junta has caused a long-running diplomatic row, and on Thursday night the Dutch foreign minister told journalists that further sanctions against Myanmar will be discussed in Brussels on Monday.

At the opening of the fifth ASEM summit in Vietnam's capital Friday morning, the acting Danish prime minister acknowledged the difficulties in Myanmar's admission, but expressed hope that the inclusion of the regime in the ASEM process would be a positive step.

"It's no secret that the preparations for this summit have been a painstaking process. But the ASEM is now a reality. Together we should use this ASEM enlargement as a catalyst for further cooperation," Per Stig Muller told the assembled delegates and leaders at the opening of ASEM 5.

ASEM 5 continues until Saturday, when a closing ceremony was scheduled.

The summit is intended to increase cooperation and dialogue between Europe and Asia, but has been overshadowed by the row over Myanmar's admission. 

DPA

Subject: German news 

 

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