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Burma's President Says No Turning Back on Reforms


President Thein Sein, left, welcomes U.S. Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell at the presidential palace Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2012 in Naypyitaw, Myanmar.

President Thein Sein, left, welcomes U.S. Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell at the presidential palace Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2012 in Naypyitaw, Myanmar.

Burma's president says there is no turning back on democratic reforms, and is urging the West to lift sanctions on his country.

In an interview with The Washington Post newspaper, President Thein Sein said his government has already complied with several Western demands, including freeing most political prisoners, scheduling elections in April and allowing opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi to potentially join the government.

The Burmese leader did not rule out the possibility that the Nobel peace laureate might even join the cabinet someday.

Thein Sein used the interview to appeal to the U.S. and other nations to drop sanctions that he said hurt Burma's 54 million people and threaten to hold back economic progress.

Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP.

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