Clinton calls Myanmar elections sign of repression

November 7, 2010 05:37

US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton hit out Sunday at Myanmar's military rulers, calling their weekend elections deeply flawed and a sign of "heartbreaking" repression in the country.

In a speech to Australian university students, Clinton also called on the military-led government in Fiji to restore democracy in the Pacific island nation.

She said she hoped Myanmar's election — the first in 20 years — could produce a few new leaders who might change the country's direction. But she stressed the United States would continue to support an international inquiry into human rights abuses in the country also known as Burma.

Sunday's elections "once again expose the abuses of the military junta," she told an audience at the University of Melbourne. "It's heartbreaking because the people of Burma deserve so much better."

The vote is being held amid both a barrage of criticism that the balloting is rigged in favor of the military and hope that some change toward democratic reform might nonetheless follow. Clinton shared that sentiment.

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