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For Immediate Release
Office of the Press Secretary
July 8, 2004

Statement on the Burmese Freedom and Democracy Act of 2003

President Bush was pleased to sign yesterday a bill renewing import restrictions contained in the Burmese Freedom and Democracy Act of 2003. The United States maintains a strong set of sanctions against the regime in Burma. We will maintain pressure on the regime until there is tangible progress toward the restoration of democracy and protection of human rights for all the peoples of Burma.

We have seen no such tangible progress since the May 30, 2003 attack on National League for Democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi and her supporters. Aung San Suu Kyi and U Tin Oo remain under house arrest and most district party offices remain closed. Over a thousand other political prisoners remain in jail and arrests continue. The regime has promised a return to democracy and has launched a National Convention. However, with the democratic opposition and its leadership unable to participate freely, this process cannot reflect the aspirations of the Burmese people.

America will remain steadfast in seeking freedom for the Burmese people. We call on other concerned nations to join us in pressing the regime to live up to its commitments to restore full democracy and human rights to the people of Burma.

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