BANGKOK (AP) — Bill Richardson, a former US ambassador to the United Nations, met with Myanmar’s military ruler on a mission officially billed as pandemic aid, but it comes amid hopes that it will result in the Southeast Asian nation An American journalist detained in the U.S. will be released. .
Myanmar’s information ministry said Richardson spoke with General Min Aung Huling about preventing and controlling COVID-19. He said the Ministers of Foreign Affairs, Health and International Cooperation were also present. The meeting was telecast on state broadcaster MRTV in the evening.
Richardson’s mission was announced by his office on Sunday. The office said, Richardson “will tour the country to discuss humanitarian delivery of COVID-19 vaccines, medical supplies and other public health needs.”
However, his mission also raised hopes that Richardson would demand the release of American journalist Danny Fenster, who has been imprisoned in Myanmar for five months.
The health care system in Myanmar has virtually collapsed due to widespread resistance from the February military expulsion of Aung San Suu Kyi’s elected government. Medical workers have been at the forefront of the opposition to the military government.
Poverty in Myanmar and fierce fighting between the government and insurgents in different parts of the country has made the situation worse.
“Governor Richardson believes that in times of crisis and instability like this, we must ensure that humanitarian aid is delivered to those most in need,” his office said in a statement.
Fenster, a detained journalist for the Greater Detroit area, is charged with allegedly inciting to spread false or provocative news. The offense is punishable with imprisonment of up to three years.
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