A senior U.S. envoy is scheduled to meet with detained opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi Monday, one day after arriving in Burma for talks on the country's upcoming elections.
Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian Affairs Kurt Campbell is making his first trip to Burma since last November, when he became the highest-level U.S. official to visit that country in years.
Campbell flew to Rangoon Sunday and later held talks in the administrative capital, Naypyidaw, with leaders of Burma's military government. Prior to Campbell's visit, Burmese officials had said it was not likely the U.S. envoy would meet with Prime Minister Thein Sein.
During a stopover in Bangkok, Campbell told reporters that Washington has real concerns about Burma's election laws and the environment they have created.
U.S. President Barack Obama has been making an effort to engage the isolated country, but the United States has strongly criticized Burma for election plans that effectively exclude Aung San Suu Kyi and her National League for Democracy party.
On Friday, the U.S. Senate passed a resolution condemning the continued detention of Aung San Suu Kyi, and called on Burma to permit credible and fair elections.
On Thursday, the NLD announced it would disband rather than submit to government terms for the upcoming elections. Under Burma's new election law, the party would have to expel political prisoners from its ranks. It also would have to accept the nullification of results of the country's last elections, in 1990, won by the NLD.
Shortly after that announcement, leading members of the NLD said they were forming a breakaway faction to compete in the election.
Some information for this report provided by AFP.