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Red Cross head makes first-ever visit to Myanmar

Published on Jan 14, 2013 6:01 AM

GENEVA (AFP) - The head of the International Committee of the Red Cross arrived in Myanmar on Sunday to meet with President Thein Sein and other officials, the first-ever visit to the nation by an ICRC president.

"Myanmar's government has signalled its readiness to discuss a number of humanitarian issues with us," Peter Maurer said in an ICRC statement.

"This is a significant step forward in our dialogue and in strengthening our relationship with the Myanmar authorities." Myanmar has seen a string of reforms in recent months. Maurer said that over the past year, there had been "positive developments on various issues where the ICRC's expertise could benefit the people of Myanmar."

Mr Maurer plans to visit the western state of Rakhine, where the ICRC is carrying out aid work among people affected by communal violence.

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