News / Europe

French President Pledges Support for Burma's Democracy

Burmese democracy icon Aung San Suu Kyi arrives at Gare du Nord train station, Paris, June 26, 2012.
Burmese democracy icon Aung San Suu Kyi arrives at Gare du Nord train station, Paris, June 26, 2012.
VOA News
French President Francois Hollande on Tuesday assured visiting Burmese opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi that France will do everything possible to support Burma's democratic transition.

"We support all the efforts that could be taken for the success of this transition," said President Hollande. "And France must be at the service of democracy.  Everything that can be done to support or to at times put pressure, will be done.  The president of Myanmar [Burma] was presented by Madame Aung San Suu Kyi as a sincere man in the [democratic] movement that he committed to.  If he wants to achieve it, he will.''

Burma's democratic leader arrived in Paris Tuesday on the final leg of her European tour.  At a joint press conference with Mr. Hollande, Aung San Suu Kyi said her country needs investment to revive its economy, but she said growth should not come at the expense of democratic reforms.

"We need the kind of help that will empower the people, empower the people by developing their skills as well as by creating opportunities for them," said Aung San Suu Kyi. "We say that Burma has come to the beginning of a new road.  But this new road has to be walked by new players as well.  If the same old people are going to take this new road, then we can say that this process of reform in Burma is not going the way that it should.  We want Burma to be a more inclusive society, where power is shared between all stake holders - that is to say, all those who are interested in bringing about political, social and economic reform in Burma."

The 67-year-old Nobel laureate told reporters that it is important to make Burma's military understand that democracy is for the good of everyone in the country, not only one segment of society.

Aung San Suu Kyi expressed confidence that Burma's President Thein Sein is sincere about supporting the country's democratic transition, but she said she could not speak for everyone in the Burmese government.

While in France, Aung San Suu Kyi also met with the heads of the National Assembly and the Senate, France's foreign minister, and the mayor of Paris.

Her two-week tour of Europe has also included stops in Britain, Switzerland, Ireland and Norway.

In Norway, she received the 1991 Nobel Peace Prize that was denied her while under house arrest in Burma.

During her stop in Britain, Aung San Suu Kyi addressed Parliament and was awarded an honorary doctorate from Oxford University, where she studied and lived with her family for years before returning to Burma in 1988.

A civilian government came to power in Burma last year, after the country's 2010 elections - Burma's first in 20 years.  Aung San Suu Kyi was released from a house arrest shortly after the vote.  She spent almost 15 years in some form of detention under the military government, which refused to step down when her party, the National League for Democracy, won a landslide election victory in 1991.   

The opposition leader and Burma's democracy icon, was elected to parliament this year.


Some information for this report was provided by AFP.

You May Like

Scotland Vote Raises Questions of International Law

Experts say self-determination, as defined and protected by international law, confined narrowly to independence movements in process of de-colonization More

Video Whaling Summit Votes to Uphold Ban on Japan Whale Hunt

Conservationists hail ruling as a victory, but Tokyo says it will submit revised plans for a whale hunt in 2015 More

Annual Military Exercise Takes on New Meaning for Ukraine Troops

Troops from 15 nations participating in annual event, 'Rapid Trident' in western Ukraine More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Lwin Aung from: Rangoon
June 27, 2012 1:43 AM
Myanmar is facing the so -called Rohinjar (Bengali) problem. Actually they came from Bangladesh by boat or cross the border by walk liked that Pakistan-Afghanistan border.
Myanmar and Bangladesh border is about 100 miles long distance. We and they are totally different with culture, Language, different history, habits and others. I understand the Bangladesh population growing problem such about 150 to 200 million peoples. But it is facing the all countries of world. And Border area can’t guard full time.
After that they arrive in Myanmar, they become merchants, fisherman and farmers illegally previous time. But it is also limited for that region’s Rakhine nationals. Now their population is about one million and they are many more than region’s Rakhine nationals. They are not stay steadily and they ( so-called Rohinjar/ Bengali ) give us many troubles. Sometimes they become Rohinjar rebles back by Islamic extremist groups.
I worry if they (Bangladesh) don’t accept their nationals, it will be become big problem. I don’t think, third country liked US, Canada, Japan and Australia can’t be accepted such Bengalis.
Please don’t pressure to accept that problem to our nation’s problem because our nation has a lot of problem with weaken economy.
We like and believe U Thein Sein and Daw Aung San Su Kyi. They are going to Democracy, economy reform and peace process together. Thank you.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Russian Economy Reeling After New Western Sanctionsi
X
September 18, 2014 2:28 AM
A new wave of Western sanctions is hitting Russia’s economy hard. State-owned energy firms continue to bleed profits and Russia’s national currency plunged to a new low this week after the U.S. and the European Union announced new sanctions to punish Russia's aggressive stance in eastern Ukraine. But as Mil Arcega reports, the sanctions could also prove costly for European and American companies.
Video

Video Russian Economy Reeling After New Western Sanctions

A new wave of Western sanctions is hitting Russia’s economy hard. State-owned energy firms continue to bleed profits and Russia’s national currency plunged to a new low this week after the U.S. and the European Union announced new sanctions to punish Russia's aggressive stance in eastern Ukraine. But as Mil Arcega reports, the sanctions could also prove costly for European and American companies.
Video

Video Belgian Researchers Discover Way to Block Cancer Metastasis

Cancer remains one of the deadliest diseases, despite many new methods to combat it. Modern medicine has treatments to prevent the growth of primary tumor cells. But most cancer deaths are caused by metastasis, the stage when primary tumor cells change and move to other parts of the body. A team of Belgian scientists says it has found a way to prevent that process. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Mogadishu's Flood of Foreign Workers Leaves Somalis Out of Work

Unemployment and conflict has forced many young Somalians out of the country in search of a better life. But a newfound stability in the once-lawless nation has created hope — and jobs — which, some say, are too often being filled by foreigners. Abdulaziz Billow reports from Mogadishu.
Video

Video A Dinosaur Fit for Land and Water

Residents and tourists in Washington D.C. can now examine a life-size replica of an unusual dinosaur that lived almost a hundred million years ago in northern Africa. Scientists say studying the behemoth named Spinosaurus helps them better understand how some prehistoric animals adapted to life on land and in water. The Spinosaurus replica is on display at the National Geographic museum. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Iraqi Kurdistan Church Helps Christian Children Cope find shelter in churches in the Kurdish capital, Irbil

In the past six weeks, tens of thousands of Iraqi Christians have been forced to flee their homes by Islamic State militants and find shelter in churches in the Kurdish capital, Irbil. Despite U.S. airstrikes in the region, the prospect of people returning home is still very low and concerns are starting to grow over the impact this is having on the displaced youth. Sebastian Meyer reports from Irbil on how one church is coping.
Video

Video NASA Picks Boeing, SpaceX to Carry Astronauts Into Space

The U.S. space agency, NASA, has chosen Boeing and SpaceX companies to build the next generation of spacecraft that will carry U.S. astronauts to the International Space Station by the year 2017. The deal with private industry enables NASA to end its dependence on Russia to send space crews into low Earth orbit and back. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Future of Ukrainian Former President's Estate Uncertain

More than six months after Ukraine's former President Viktor Yanukovych fled revolution to Russia, authorities have yet to gain control of his palatial estate. Protesters occupy the grounds and opened it to tourists but they are also refusing to turn it over to the state. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Mezhigirya, just north of Kyiv.
Video

Video China Muslims Work to Change Perceptions After Knife Attacks

China says its has sentenced three men to death and one woman to life in prison for a deadly knife attack in March that left more than 30 dead and 140 injured. Beijing says Muslim militants from China's restive western region of Xinjiang carried out the attacks. Now, more than six months after the incident, residents in the city are still coping with the aftermath. VOA's Bill Ide has more from Kunming.


Carnage and mayhem are part of daily life in northern Nigeria, the result of a terror campaign by the Islamist group Boko Haram. Fears are growing that Nigeria’s government may not know how to counter it, and may be making things worse. More

AppleAndroid