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Webb’s hearing on Burma to feature prominent Burma experts


New Delhi (Mizzima) - United States Senator James Webb, a strong advocate of engagement with Burma, will have four Burma experts including Professor David I. Steinberg testifying on the importance of engagement with Burma, during the senate hearing he will chair on September 30.

The hearing, entitled “U.S. Policy Toward Burma: Its Impact and Effectiveness” will also have Kurt Campbell, Assistant Secretary of State for East Asia and Pacific Affairs Department of State, Mr. Thant Myint-U, Burmese historian, Professor David C. Williams John S. Hastings Professor of Law at Indiana University Bloomington.

The hearing will review the current US policy of sanctions and discuss the role the US should adopt in promoting democratic changes in Burma, according to Webb’s office in a statement.

Secretary Hillary Clinton on Wednesday gave a preview of the Burma Policy, which she said is under review for over six months. She said the US has come up with a new policy of applying both sanctions and engagement with the Burmese regime.

While the fundamental objectives of achieving democratic changes in Burma remain the same, Clinton said, US will directly engage the Burmese military generals in order to open new channels of communication that will contribute in promoting change.

She had earlier in February said, the current US policy of imposing sanctions as well as the engagement policy of neighbouring countries, including members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean), China and India have missed the target.

US State department spokesperson Ian Kelly, during a regular press briefing on Thursday, said Kurt Campbell will be leading the Burma policy along with several other interlocutors, who will be named soon.

Earlier the Senate Committee hearing was scheduled for October 1, but Webb’s office confirmed that the dates have been changed to September 30, at 3 p.m. (local time).


Last Updated ( Sunday, 27 September 2009 17:09 )  

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