U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon says he is "deeply disappointed"
that Burma's military leader rejected his request to meet with jailed
democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi in Rangoon.
near the end of his two-day visit to Burma, Mr. Ban said the country's
authorities have missed a "very important opportunity."
Mr. Ban met twice with Burma's senior general Than Shwe during the trip.
criticized the military leadership, saying Burma's human rights record
is a matter of "grave concern." He also urged the government to
release all political prisoners.
Aung San Suu Kyi has been in
detention for 13 of the last 19 years, and is now on trial for
allegedly violating the terms of her house arrest.
Ban also visited a village in the Irrawaddy Delta area that was hit
hard by Cyclone Nargis. Mr. Ban played a key role in persuading
Burma's leaders to allow international aid workers into the area after
the disaster last year.
Aung San Suu Kyi's trial was scheduled to resume Friday, the day of Mr. Ban's arrival, but was postponed for a week.
charges against her stem from a May visit by an American intruder who
swam to her lakeside home uninvited. She says she permitted him to
rest overnight after he said he was suffering from exhaustion.
If convicted, she could face a five-year prison term.
world community has called the trial a sham, intended to keep her in
prison through the 2010 elections. Previous U.N. efforts to obtain
Aung San Suu Kyi's release have failed.
Some information for this report was provided by Reuters.