Sunday, June 23, 2024

Manmohan, Suu Kyi discuss democratic reforms in Myanmar


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New Delhi: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Wednesday met Myanmar’s pro-democracy iconic leader Aung San Suu Kyi and discussed the process of national reconciliation and democratisation in her country.

Talks between Manmohan Singh and Suu Kyi lasted for half-an-hour following which they met without aides, said official sources.

Expressing his happiness at receiving her in New Delhi, Manmohan Singh thanked her for accepting the invitation to deliver the Jawaharlal Nehru lecture.

In his interaction with Suu Kyi, the prime minister said: “Our good wishes are with you as indeed with your struggle for democracy. We admire you for the indomitable courage you have shown”.

“The two discussed a variety of issues including the national reconciliation process underway in Myanmar and the process of democratisation in this context. Prime Minister welcomed the progress made by Daw Suu Kyi and President Thien Sien,” said sources.

“They agreed that people-to-people relations were important. There was also a discussion about greater cooperation between the parliaments and judiciaries in the two countries,” he said.

Suu Kyi began her six-day visit to India Tuesday, her first trip to the country where she studied after a quarter century.

“It is good to be back in India,” the Nobel laureate told a TV news channel Wednesday morning.

“…I am glad that I can still recognise parts of Delhi,” she said.

Suu Kyi studied at the Convent of Jesus and Mary School and graduated in political science from Lady Shri Ram College, one of Delhi’s most reputed colleges for women, when her mother was Burma’s envoy to India. She is expected to meet students and the faculty of LSR, as her college is known.

On the political level, she said she wanted closer relations between the people of the two countries because a gulf had emerged in recent years.

Suu Kyi and her mother — Suu Kyi’s father was a friend of Nehru — lived in the 1960s on 24 Akbar Road, now the headquarters of the Congress party.

Suu Kyi is also scheduled to meet Vice President Hamid Ansari, Lok Sabha Speaker Meira Kumar, Congress president Sonia Gandhi and External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid.

She will visit The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI) in Gurgaon, before flying to Bangalore and Andhra Pradesh.

India honoured Suu Kyi with the Jawaharlal Nehru Award for International Understanding in 1992 while she was under house arrest under the military government in Myanmar. (IANS)


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