15 Nov '11, 10am

ASEAN ministers "to approve" Myanmar as 2014 chair

NUSA DUA, Indonesia - Southeast Asian ministers said Tuesday they would approve Myanmar's bid to chair their 10-member bloc in 2014, in a major boost for its new government after a series of reform gestures. Their move goes against warnings that giving Myanmar's nominally civilian administration the diplomatic prize so quickly will remove the incentive for more fundamental reforms in a nation still accused of major rights abuses. "Everybody agrees to Myanmar, 2014," Malaysian Foreign Minister Anifah Aman told reporters at Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) talks on the Indonesian resort island of Bali. "They have taken positive steps toward democratisation. We should encourage them more by letting them host the meeting," he said. The bloc's leaders will make a formal decision this week based on the ministers' recommendation. In 2006, Myanmar was forced to renou...

Full article: http://www.channelnewsasia.com/stories/afp_asiapacific/vi...

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