U.N. chief: Myanmar to allow all aid workers
NAYPYITAW Myanmar (AP) -- U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said Friday(23 of may 2008) Myanmar's junta has agreed to allow "all aid workers" into the country to help cyclone survivors.
Tolerance Of Myanmar Abuses Allowed Aid Delays -UN Official
GENEVA (AP)--The world's long record of tolerating human rights abuses in Myanmar allowed the country's government to obstruct international aid in the wake of Cyclone Nargis, the U.N.'s top rights official said Monday(02 of June 2008).
Myanmar's military government stopped foreign relief workers from distributing aid around the country in the immediate aftermath of last month's devastating storm, which affected some 2.4 million people. The rules were only relaxed after intense lobbying from U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.
"The obstruction to the deployment of such assistance illustrates the invidious effects of long-standing international tolerance for human rights violations," U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Louise Arbour said.
Arbour, who leaves office at the end of the month, made her comments in a speech to the Geneva-based U.N. Human Rights Council.
In March, the 47-member council criticized Myanmar for its record of violently suppressing pro-democracy groups and extending the house arrest of opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi. The Nobel Peace Prize winner has been detained for 12 of the past 18 years since her party won a 1990 general election that the junta refused to acknowledge.
Western trade unions and human rights groups have called for sanctions against Myanmar, but governments have so far resisted the idea, partly because of strong opposition from powerful developing countries such as China and India.
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