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Burma Says Government to Meet With Aung San Suu Kyi Monday

Pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi talks to reporters about her trip to Bagan, at her home in Yangon, July 11, 2011

A Burmese official says pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi will meet Monday with a minister from the country’s new army-backed civilian government.

The unidentified official, quoted in Burmese media, said the Nobel laureate will meet with Labor Minister Aung Kyi at a state guest house in Rangoon.

Aung San Suu Kyi has not commented on the reported meeting, and it was not known Sunday whether the nominally civilian government, which came to power late last year, is attempting to ease tensions with the democracy activist and her followers. The French news agency quotes a spokesman for her National League for Democracy party as saying Aung San Suu Kyi was not informed of the scheduled meeting until Sunday morning.

Such a meeting would be the first known official contact between the pro-democracy leader and the new government since elections in November that ended more than two decades of hardline military rule.

Since then, the new government, heavily populated with generals and retired military, has come under intense international pressure to improve the country's human rights record - a record that U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton last week called "deplorable."

Aung San Suu Kyi, who has spent 15 of the last 21 years in prison or under house arrest, was freed on November 13, just days after Burma’s ruling military government permitted the first elections in the country since 1990.

The activist and her NLD party won the 1990 polls handily, but she and her party were prevented by the military from taking power.