Deva hosts ground-breaking Myanmar visit

07-Mar-2013 @ 14:0

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Anthea McIntyre Anthea McIntyre

Anthea McIntyre Anthea McIntyre

In a ground breaking historical visit, the President ofMyanmar (Burma) Thein Sein visited the European Institutions in Brussels and waswarmly received by the European Parliament, the European Commission andCouncil.

President Sein is Myanmar's first civilian President sincethe end of the country's 49-year-long unbroken military rule. His trip to the European Parliamenttoday marks a significant turning point as he is the first head of state ofMyanmar to visit and take part in meetings within the European institutions inBrussels.

The President was the Guest of Honour at the inauguration ofthe EU-Myanmar Friendship Group, attendees gathered from both Brussels andNaypyidaw to celebrate the creation of this new European Parliament based groupwhich will be dedicated to deepening and enhancing EU-Myanmar relations.

The inauguration ceremony was hosted by the founder andPresident of the group, Nirj Deva, British Conservative MEP for the South Eastof England and the Vice-Chair of the European Parliament's Development Committeewho said:

"I am absolutely sure that this is a step towards asuccessful cooperation in which we will aim the future activities of thisfriendship group to aid and support the wider democratic transition movement inMyanmar and to sharing European values and principles with our counterpart inSouth East Asia."

In his address President Thein Sein said:

"We are very thankful to the EU for its humanitarianassistance in the areas of education and health and also for its help andsupport for the establishment of peace in Myanmar . Such support compliments ourefforts for peace making and for this we are very grateful I am extremely happyto be present at the inauguration of the EU-Myanmar Friendship Group today.. Inthis new political climate in Myanmar there is a democratic government anddemocratic system and we are very keen to work together to build deeperrelations with the EU. I believe that this friendship group will play asignificant role in such a future."

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