William Hague is spending two days in Burma, which, until recently, has been one of the most politically isolated countries in the world. Today he visited with government leaders in the capital Naypyitaw including the president, Thein Sein.
In a statement, Hague said, “I emphasized the importance the British government attaches to the reforms that the Burmese government has undertaken in the last six months." Hague added, he hoped the progress would continue and that all of Burma's political prisoners would be released. The number of political prisoners in the country is estimated at between 600 and 2,000.
Hague concluded, "The British government stands ready to respond positively to evidence of further progress towards that lasting improvement in human rights and political freedom that the people of Burma seek.”
After his meeting with government leaders, the Foreign Secretary flew to Rangoon and met Nobel Peace Prize winner and leader of the democratic opposition, Aung San Suu Kyi. The Guardian's south Asia correspondent Jason Burke reported that Nay Zin Lat, a senior adviser to President Thein Sein, said Suu Kyi could rule Burma one day.