Burma Suspends Construction of Myitsone Dam

The United States today welcomed the President Thein Sein’s announcement to suspend construction of the Myitsone dam based on an assessment that it is against the will of the Burmese people. The decision marks a positive step by the Burmese government toward responding to the concerns of its people and toward national reconciliation.

Special Representative and Policy Coordinator Ambassador Mitchell traveled to Burma September 9-14, where he held 35 meetings and exchanged views with over 80 interlocutors from government officials to pro-democracy, ethnic, and civil society leaders. Several groups conveyed concerns regarding the Myitsone Dam project including its harmful environmental impact.

According to the U.S. State Department, during the September 30 meeting of Special Representative Mitchell and Foreign Minister Wunna Maung Lwin, they discussed political prisoners, national reconciliation, violence in ethnic areas as well as the role of civil society and critical components of open, democratic governance.

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