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Myanmar can learn from Taiwan's democratic experience: Daniel Russel

Myanmar can learn from Taiwan's democratic experience: Daniel Russel

Washington, Sept. 11 (CNA) U.S. assistant secretary of state for East Asian and Pacific affairs said Friday that Washington will watch closely the upcoming general elections in Myanmar and that the Southeast Asian country can learn from Taiwan. Asked about the elections in Myanmar to be held in November and Taiwan's presidential election in January, Daniel Russel said regardless of whether it is an election in Taiwan, Myanmar (also known as Burma) or other countries, the U.S. maintains the same stance of respecting the democratic process. He said while Taiwan has considerably more experience in democratic elections, Myanmar is "still inching forward." "Frankly, I think there is a lot that Burma can learn from Taiwan," he said, adding that the Taiwan example may serve as an inspiration for many young people in Myanmar. Russel was speaking during a question-and-answer session at an event held at the Washington-based think tank Carnegie Endowment for International Peace to discuss the development of Myanmar. He has just concluded a trip to Asia that took him to Myanmar, China, and Mongolia. During his visit to Myanmar, Russel said, he met with senior Burmese government officials, pro-democracy activist Aung San Suu Kyi, and civil society and raised concerns for the democratic development in the country. Speaking about Myanmar, he said Washington supports the country's economic growth, political development, independence and territorial integrity. On the question of Myanmar's ties with China and the U.S., he said that Myanmar's good relations with the U.S. do not come at the expense of its relations with China. "Good relations between China and Burma are in everybody's interests," he added. Myanmar will hold its first general elections on Nov. 8 since a nominally civilian government was introduced in 2011, ending about 50 years of military rule. It is expected that the opposition National League for Democracy, led by Aung San Suu Kyi, will win a considerable number of seats in both houses of parliament. (By Rita Cheng and Elaine Hou)


Updated : 2021-09-20 20:52 GMT+08:00