Byline: Matthew Russell Lee of Inner City Press at the UN: News Analysis
UNITED NATIONS, July 7, updated — While by nearly any measure UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon’s two day visit to Myanmar was a diplomatic failure, on July 6 when Inner City Press asked Japan’s Ambassador to the UN Yukio Takasu to assess the trip, he said it was “too early” for that, that when Ban returns from Europe they will get a full briefing and address the issue. Video here, from Minute 6:43.
But the so-called Group of Friends on Myanmar, Inner City Press has learned, will be briefed on July 8 by Ban’s envoy to Myanmar, Ibrahim Gambari.
Some view this as distancing Ban from the lack of accomplishments on the trip, which they view as having provided some legitimacy to the regime of General Than Shwe. Gambari, recently offered up to replace Rodolphe Adada for the UN in Darfur, has been to Myanmar eight times and has little to show for it.
Gambari’s supporters blame the “Western powers” for not giving him any carrots with which to tempt the generals. But perhaps the Myanmar regime, like Sri Lanka’s, doesn’t need the West’s carrots. continue