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UN Security Council Denounces Burma's Military Crackdown on Protesters


The U.N. Security Council on Thursday denounced the recent military crackdown against pro-democracy protesters in Burma and called for a release of all political prisoners there.

Permanent members of the council with veto powers, China and Russia, had been pushing for softer language, while the United States and other Western powers want tougher action against the military-backed government.

The non-binding statement was issued as U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said he would dispatch special adviser Ibrahim Gambari back to the region for consultations on the situation in Burma.

The U.N. says Gambari will begin his Asian tour on Monday in Thailand before continuing to Malaysia, Indonesia, India, China and Japan. He will return to Burma shortly thereafter.

Gambari returned from a four-day visit to Burma last week.

Burmese officials say the crackdown on pro-democracy protesters left 10 people dead. Dissidents put the number of fatalities at 200.

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