Nov. 18 - U.S. President Barack Obama opens door to new U.S. ties with Myanmar. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).
ROUGH CUT - NO REPORTER NARRATION U.S. President Barack Obama said on Friday (November 18) he saw "flickers of progress" in Myanmar and dispatched Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to visit the isolated country next month to explore new ties. Obama, in Indonesia for a summit of Asia-Pacific leaders, said he had spoken for the first time with Myanmar democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi who told him she supported more U.S. engagement with the country also known as Burma. He said the release of political prisoners, relaxing of media restrictions and signs of legislative change in the past few weeks were "the most important steps toward reform in Burma that we've seen in years". Myanmar is now ruled by a civilian government after an election last year that was meant to hand over power after nearly five decades of military rule. Clinton's visit will be the first by a U.S. secretary of state for more than 50 years. She will travel to Yangon and the capital Naypyitaw and "explore whether the United States can empower a positive transition in Burma and begin a new chapter between our countries", Obama said.