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Roundup: Aung San Suu Kyi's Australia visit boosts ties with Myanmar

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Roundup: Aung San Suu Kyi's Australia visit boosts ties with Myanmar

YANGON, Dec. 2 (Xinhua) -- Myanmar opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi's week-long visit to Australia, which ended on Monday, has boosted bilateral relations and cooperation between Myanmar and Australia, officials said.

During her stay in Australia which began on Nov. 26, Suu Kyi, chairperson of the National League for Democracy (NLD) and of the Committee for Rule of Law and Tranquility of the Lower House, encouraged Australia to maintain its support for much wider democratic reforms in Myanmar.

Suu Kyi called on foreign governments to take a long-term view of Myanmar while urging Australians to invest in her country.

She discussed with Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott on a number of issues including Australia's asylum seeker policy.

She also called for an end to the violence in Myanmar's ethnic state to create condition for the country to move forward.

Suu Kyi made the trip after Australian Governor-General Quentin Bryce and Governor of New South Wales Marie Bashir successively visited Myanmar in early November.

During their visits, a memorandum of understanding was signed between Yangon's University of Medicines and University of Sydney and Sydney Medical School on cooperation in the education sector.

As part of a growing aid program, Australia has pledged an additional 20 million Australian dollars (20.6 million U.S. dollars) over two years for the first phase of the new Myanmar- Australia Partnership for Reform.

Australia's aid program to Myanmar is expected to double in size to 100 million Australian dollars (103 million U.S. dollars) per year by 2015.

In June 2012, Australia announced lifting of its remaining financial and travel sanctions on Myanmar, while keeping arms embargo in place.

Following the lifting of the sanctions on Myanmar, President U Thein Sein also made a milestone trip to Australia in March this year.

Suu Kyi's Australia visit was a follow-up to that of five European countries - Belgium, Luxembourg, France, Britain and Italy in October.

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/xinhua-news-agency/131202/roundup-aung-san-suu-kyis-australia-visit-boosts-ties-myanma