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UN Special Rapporteur hopes to meet with Aung San Suu Kyi during third visit to Myanmar

UN Special Rapporteur hopes to meet with Aung San Suu Kyi during third visit to Myanmar

GENEVA / YANGON (11 February 2010) -- The Special Rapporteur on the Human Rights Situation in Myanmar, Tomás Ojea Quintana, said Thursday that he hopes to meet with Daw Aung San Suu Kyi and other political leaders during his third mission to the country, from 15 to 19 February.

“I hope that my request to the Government to meet with Daw Aung San Suu Kyi will be granted this time,” Mr. Ojea Quintana said. “It would be important for me to meet with political party leaders in the context of this year’s landmark elections.”

The UN independent expert noted that “2010 appears to be a critical time for the people of Myanmar, as the Government plans to hold national elections after 20 years.”

“I intend to review and report on progress of implementation of the four core human rights elements that I have recommended,” explained Mr. Ojea Quintana, “including the revision of domestic laws to ensure compliance with international human rights standards, and the release of all prisoners of conscience.”

The UN Special Rapporteur will also follow up on his recommendations concerning the reform of the armed forces to ensure respect for human rights and humanitarian law, including training, as well as accountability and the independence of the judiciary.

Mr. Ojea Quintana, who will visit Myanmar at the invitation of the Government, added that he also plans to travel to Northern Rakhine State in order to see the human rights situation there first-hand.

A press conference will be held at the airport in Yangon at the conclusion of the Special Rapporteur’s five day mission, on Friday 19 February.

Mr. Ojea Quintana will present the findings of the visit in a forthcoming session of the Human Rights Council in March 2010.

Mr.Tomás Ojea Quintana (Argentina) was appointed by the United Nations Human Rights Council in May 2008. As Special Rapporteur, he is independent from any government or organization and serves in his individual capacity.