Sanctions against Myanmar premature: Putin

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Moscow, Sep 29 (UNI) Russia considers it premature to discuss possible sanctions against Myanmar after the army's recent crackdown on protesters, President Vladimir Putin said today.

Referring to the continuing violent protests in Myanmar, the largest in more than two decades, Mr Putin told Itar-Tass news agency at Bocharov Ruchei in the Black Sea resort of Sochi, ''As far as the possibility of sanctions is concerned, it is a subject for special consideration by the UN. It is too soon to talk about this yet.'' Yesterday, Russian Foreign Ministry expressed serious concern over the worsening situation in conflict-ridden country.

In a statement, the Ministry said, ''The violent suppression of mass demonstrations in a number of cities has been accompanied by bloodshed, causing considerable loss of life. Urgent steps are necessary to avert an escalation of tension.'' .

Warning that any attempts to use the events in Myanmar in order to interfere into internal affairs of the country would be counter-productive, it said, ''Russia calls on the warring sides to show restraint and search for ways to normalise the situation.'' ''We consider counter-productive any attempts to use these events in order to put pressure from outside or interfere into internal affairs of this sovereign state,'' the Ministry added.

They believed that the events in Myanmar could not pose a threat to international and regional peace and security and emphasised that Moscow ''hopes that the Myanmar authorities and the opposition will show restraint and prevent further destabilisation of the situation''.

It said Russia was watching the development of the internal situation in the Myanmar due to the protest actions of Buddhist monks and the opposition in Yangon and other cities.

''We believe that the events in Myanmar are the country's internal matter. We hope that the situation will be normalised soon,'' it noted.

UNI

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