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Ambassador Douglas Gibson meets Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Daw Aung San Suu Kyi.

From 14 – 17 June 2011 the South African Head of Mission (HoM) H.E. Ambassador Douglas Gibson accompanied by Raymond Manzini, First Secretary: Political, visited the Republic of the Union of Myanmar to pay courtesy calls on the newly installed government and to hold meetings with diplomats, NGOs, Civil Society Organisations and political parties as well as with Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, (Daw Suu). The HoM was well received at all meetings, some of which were regarded by others as being unusual, and as a mark of the esteem in which South Africa is held across the political and diplomatic spectrum in Myanmar. The primary objective of the visit was to ascertain whether there has been any political progress made by the new government.
During these meetings HoM shared some of the experiences which South Africa has gone through saying the country was still learning about democracy and was not arrogant about it. He encouraged inclusivity and a move towards a solution that is acceptable to all the people.

A remarkable feature of the visit was the view, expressed by several of the persons visited, that South Africa has a particular standing and stature that would enable it to play a significant reconciliatory role in Myanmar. This view was expressed, inter alia by the US, the UK, several of the UN agencies, and by Daw Suu herself.  Ambassador Gibson reiterated that South Africa is a friend of the people of Myanmar and that the country would be happy to, if asked to do so, share the experiences of her acclaimed democratic transition.


March 2018






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