U.S. Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell made the following statement Wednesday regarding an update on sanctions against Burma following Sunday's by-election:
"While we will review Secretary Clinton's announcement, I support in principal the decision to update the sanctions against the Burmese regime in light of this Sunday's by-election. The Burmese government has taken many positive steps of late but still has much to do, including ensuring that violence against the Kachin and other ethnic minorities ceases, as well as ending the Burmese military relationship with North Korea."
Senator McConnell traveled to Burma January 15-17. During the visit, he met with Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, Burmese government officials, recently released political prisoners and U.S. Embassy personnel. The Senator discussed political reform, bilateral relations and regional security issues with Suu Kyi and the Burmese leaders.
For nearly 20 years, Sen. McConnell has been a strong advocate for political reform, reconciliation and democracy in Burma. Every year since 2003, Senator McConnell, along with Sen. Dianne Feinstein, has introduced and enacted legislation placing sanctions on the Burmese government. He also consistently called for the release of Suu Kyi and other political prisoners.