April 29 - United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon prays for reforms at a mausoleum in Myanmar. Deborah Lutterbeck reports.
United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon offers prayers for change during a landmark trip to Myanmar to encourage its government to carry out more democratic reforms. Ban dropped by the mausoleum in Yangon. Ban's trip is his first since a reformist, quasi-civilian government took office a year ago, ending five decades of authoritarian military rule and frosty ties with the international community. Citizens welcome the visit. (SOUNDBITE) (Burmese) 60-YEAR-OLD YANGON RESIDENT WHO DECLINED TO GIVE HIS NAME, SAYING: "The fact that Ban came to greet the people is wonderful. How can I put it? It's as though he was one of us," (SOUNDBITE) (Burmese) 17-YEAR-OLD LAW STUDENT, YE MIN HTET SAYING: "He's here now so I think something will change, but I don't know what," The government, which is still led by remnants of the former junta, has stunned the outside world with economic reforms and unprecedented engagement with the West, and the political opposition. Deborah Lutterbeck, Reuters