The military government has accused officials of the US and British embassies in Rangoon of allegedly dropping into the office of the Opposition party – the National League for Democracy – 25 times in May alone.

State media accuses U.S. and UK embassies of nexus with NLD
by Salai Pi Pi
Friday, 05 June 2009 21:07

New Delhi (Mizzima) – The military government has accused officials of the US and British embassies in Rangoon of allegedly dropping into the office of the Opposition party – the National League for Democracy – 25 times in May alone.

The junta’s mouthpiece, the New Light of Myanmar, on Friday reported that officials of the US and British embassies in Rangoon had visited the NLD office 25 times and passed on instructions and unknown materials to NLD members.

“During their visit, they met Central Executive Committee (CEC) members of the party [NLD] and gave them large and small envelopes and parcels,” the newspaper said.

But Win Tin, a former political prisoner and a CEC member of the NLD made light of the accusation saying the visits by US and British embassy officials were in keeping with ‘normal relations’ that diplomats maintain across the world.

“It is just maintaining normal relations. It is not strange,” Win Tin said.

It is only normal for diplomats to maintain a relationship with the government, political parties including the Opposition and with the media in countries they are stationed in, he said.

Win Tin said the NLD is an independent political party and does not act on anyone’s behest or advice including the US and British embassies. But any advice does help in garnering diverse opinions on several issues including political, economic, social and also natural disaster.
“It doesn’t mean that NLD accepts whatever they suggest or advice. It depends on us,” he said.

“Sometimes they ask about Aung San Suu Kyi’s case? How we are tackling it and our plans to react among others,” he added.

Win Tin admitted that embassy officials had brought parcels and envelopes that contained newspapers, news bulletins and other world related papers.

He said the junta by publishing such information in its newspaper, has revealed that it has been monitoring the NLD. It wants to defame the party as leaning towards the west.

“The issue is not worthy of mention in a newspaper. The government has exposed how naïve it is… it only degrades their dignity,” Win Tin said.

Speaking to Mizzima, a Rangoon-based western diplomat said, the visit to NLD office is not surprising as many foreign diplomats including those from the US maintain a good relationship and often pay visits to the office. But the diplomat declined to elaborate further.

“They [NLD] have regular meetings with foreign diplomats not just those from the US. Many foreign diplomats have been invited to NLD’s headquarter,” a diplomat, who wished not to be named, said.

“Recently there was the anniversary of the election [1990 elections] results. The chief of the US embassy was there along with many foreign diplomats but I don’t know about the parcels and envelopes,” the diplomat added.

The US and British embassy officials were not immediately available for comment.

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