[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index ][Thread Index ]

SLORC will not be pressured into c

Subject: SLORC will not  be pressured into change:

US-Burma-junta,lead : Burma will not be pressured into change: ruling junta

(RECASTS with warning for US companies)

RANGOON, April 24 (AFP) - Burma's military government Thursday said it will 
not be pressured into changing its policies after being hit by US economic 
sanctions and warned that US companies would be the big losers.

"We will not change our policies and programmes just because of pressure 
exerted on us by a foreign power," Lieutenant General Khin Nyunt, first 
secretary of the ruling junta, was quoted as saying in the official press.

Khin Nyunt's comments follows a ban on new US investments in military ruled 
Burma which were announced Tuesday in Washington.

US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright said the sanctions were in response 
to the continued repression of the pro-democracy opposition led by Nobel Peace 
Prize winner Aung San Suu Kyi.

A Burmese military official said in a statement that Burma would not deviate 
from the path it had chosen, and accused the US government of imposing the 
sanctions for domestic political consumption.

The official added that Burma, which began opening its doors to outside 
investors in the late 1980s after three decades of self-imposed isolation, had 
vast economic opportunities for countries who were willing to come in.

"Myanmar (Burma) has opened her doors to outside investments and her abundant 
natural resources will benefit all those who come to invest," he said.

"We can only feel sorry for the US companies, because they will not get a 
second chance later to invest in Myanmar if opportunities are taken over by 
companies from nations with consistent foreign policies," he added.

Khin Nyunt also said the ruling junta would continue to make "ceaseless 
endeavours" towards building a modern Burma "regardless of the pressure 
exerted on Burma by Western powers, especially the United States."

"The new economic sanctions will not be a problem for us," he said, adding 
that there were plenty of other countries willing to pour their resources into 
Burma's growing economy.

He also accused the United States of deliberately "turning a blind eye" to 
Burma's efforts to eradicate illicit drugs and rejected US contentions that 
Rangoon was not committed to combatting the spread of narcotics.

The United States says Burma is the world's largest producer of opium and has 
accused government officials of rubbing shoulders with well known drug 
smugglers and turning a blind eye to the trade as a whole.

Khin Nyunt was speaking during an anti-drug trip to Shan state, the former 
center of operations for opium warlord Khun Sa, who surrendered to the central 
government in early 1996.