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Google Exec Urges Internet Freedom in Burma

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The executive chairman of Internet company Google has urged Burma to allow free speech and private sector development of the country's primitive telecommunications infrastructure.

Eric Schmidt told an audience of students in Rangoon Friday that Burma is right at the beginning of change and can surpass many other developing countries by developing the country's telecommunications technology. He added that one mobile phone in one village can be used to record injustices.

Schmidt also warned the group not to let the government control the Internet.

Long isolated from the rest of the world by sanctions and repressive laws imposed by the generals who ruled it for decades, Burma still has poor Internet availability, and connections are painfully slow.



Schmidt's visit to Burma comes after trips to Libya, Afghanistan and North Korea. He is scheduled to meet Burma's president Friday afternoon.

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FILE - President Barack Obama waves as he boards Air Force One at Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland en route to Southeast Asia, November 17, 2012.

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