President Bush has signed legislation into law that places U.S. sanctions on Burma. The Burmese Freedom and Democracy Act cleared Congress earlier this month.
White House Spokesman Scott McClellan says this legislation sends a clear message to the Burmese government that its continued detention of Nobel Peace Prize winner Aung San Suu Kyi is unacceptable.
Speaking to reporters prior to the signing ceremony, Mr. McClellan added the continued oppression of the Burmese people can not be allowed to stand. He said the United States stands with them in their struggle for freedom and democracy.
The sanctions bill signed by the president bans the import of goods from Burma, and freezes the government's assets in the United States. It also expands a current ban on granting U.S. visas to Burmese leaders, and strengthens the existing policy of opposing international loans or technical assistance.
Congress sent the bill to the president on July 16, about six weeks after Burma's military leaders re-arrested Aung San Suu Kyi and revived their crackdown on her pro-democracy movement.