British Prime Minister David Cameron and Myanmar's democratic leader Aung San Suu Kyi Friday said that sanctions on Myanmar should be suspended, not lifted, to continue the reform process, Reuters reported.
Cameron, who is in a historic visit to Myanmar, said that suspending the sanctions imposed on the country would be an appropriate response to the political reforms undertaken by the civilian government.
I think it's right to suspend rather than lift the sanctions, Cameron said in a news conference along with the Nobel Peace Prize laureate Aung San Suu Kyi in Yangon.
Suu Kyi also made a similar comment in the news conference.
Both the European Union and the US are looking towards lifting the trade sanctions imposed on the country as recognition of the efforts made by its current government to usher in democracy.
The European Union is due to review its curbs on the country by April 23 when the existing sanctions will expire. Cameron called for suspending all sanctions, except the ones on arms transfer, Reuters reported.
The western countries imposed sanctions on Myanmar after the military regime in the country had adopted many anti-democratic steps.
The process of change gathered momentum in this South East Asian country after the military junta, which had ruled more than two decades, handed over the power to the current ruling party after a general election in 2010, which allegedly was a rigged one.
The civilian government brought in several reforms in the country and initiated political reforms that gained international approval.
The recent by-elections in the country, which saw pro-democracy icon Suu Kyi and her party registering a landslide win, was touted as a major step towards normalization of political situation in the country.
Many countries have called for lifting the sanctions on Myanmar.
The resource-rich Myanmar was one of the richest Asian countries a few decades ago. The decade-long military rule and the western sanctions have now turned it into one of the most impoverished countries in Asia.