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For Immediate Release
Office of the First Lady
October 9, 2007

Statement by Press Secretary Sally McDonough

Earlier today, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon called Mrs. Bush to underscore that the crisis in Burma demands continued international attention and to thank her for her "unwavering support" for the people of Burma.

He reported that the military regime has appointed a senior official to begin a dialogue with Aung San Suu Kyi, leader of Burma's popularly elected National League for Democracy party. Mrs. Bush believes that the regime's appointment of Deputy Labor Minister Aung Kyi will be seen as a genuine effort toward national reconciliation when they release Aung San Suu Kyi and other political prisoners.

Secretary-General Ban also conveyed to Mrs. Bush his plans to dispatch the U.N.'s Special Envoy to Burma, Ibrahim Gambari, back to the region "as soon as possible."

Mrs. Bush was informed that the United Nations will continue to pressure the military junta to end the violent crackdown and stop the arrests of Burmese citizens, including monks and nuns, who participated in the non-violent demonstrations.

Mrs. Bush expressed her hope that the international community will help to effect positive and peaceful change in Burma.

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