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"On my part, I remain committed to the process of dialogue. It is my firm belief that dialogue and a willingness to look with honesty and clarity at the reality of Tibet can lead us to a viable solution."

Obama talks about human rights in Asia, skips Tibet

November 15, 2009

Times of India
November 14, 2009

Tokyo, Nov 14, (PTI) -- US President Barack Obama
on Saturday ruled out any lifting of sanctions on
Myanmar, saying they would remain till the
military regime takes concrete steps towards
restoration of democracy and release opposition
leader Aung San Suu Kyi along with other political prisoners.

"We are now communicating directly with the
(Myanmar) leadership to make it clear that
existing sanctions will remain until there are
concrete steps toward democratic reform," Obama
said in his major policy speech on Asia at the Suntory Hall here.

The US had recently announced the US policy to
engage the military junta in a dialogue, a marked
departure from the past wherein the US slapped
sanctions on Myanmar for its inability to restore
democracy and protect human rights. So far, it
has held two rounds of talks with the junta,
which Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has
termed as successful and productive.

"We support a Burma that is unified, peaceful,
prosperous, and democratic. And as Burma moves in
that direction, a better relationship with the
United States is possible," Obama said.

"There are clear steps that must be taken  --
unconditional release of all political prisoners,
including Aung San Suu Kyi; an end to conflicts
with minority groups; and a genuine dialogue
between the government, the democratic opposition
and minority groups on a shared vision for the future," he said.

That is how a government there will be able to
respond to the needs of its people and that is
the path that will bring Myanmar "true security
and prosperity," said Obama, who for the first
time himself was articulating his administration's policy on the country.
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