US President Obama Hails Burma’s ‘Remarkable Journey’

Burma is on a “remarkable journey” of reform that has much further to go, Barack Obama said as he made the first visit to the South East Asian nation by a serving US president.

A desire for change had been met by an agenda of reform, he said, and he was there to extend a “hand of friendship”.

Nevertheless, in a speech at Rangoon University, he said recent violence in western Rakhine state had to be addressed.

Crowds of people, some waving US flags, lined the streets as he arrived.

The visit was intended to show support for the reforms put in place by Thein Sein’s government since the end of military rule in November 2010.

Activists have cautioned that the visit may be too hasty – political prisoners remain behind bars and ethnic conflicts in border areas are unresolved.

On Monday another prisoner amnesty was announced, with about 50 of the 66 inmates freed reportedly political detainees.

About 200 political prisoners remain behind bars, militants say.

© 2012 SAT Telecommunications Ltd.

Scroll to top