WASHINGTON : The United States on Tuesday took a wait-and-see approach to a UN special envoy's visit to Myanmar after a deadly crackdown on protests there and said it looked forward to his report.
Asked whether Washington was satisfied that the envoy, Ibrahim Gambari, had been able to meet with everyone he had hoped during the trip, White House spokeswoman Dana Perino said: "It sounds like it."
"The first reports are that he did get to meet with several of the people that he wanted to meet with. But we won't know fully until he's able to return to the United Nations and report to the Security Council," said Perino.
Gambari was expected to do so on Thursday or Friday, White House national security spokesman Gordon Johndroe said after the envoy met with Myanmar's top general and with pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi, wrapping up efforts to halt a crackdown on anti-government protests.
Earlier, Perino had incorrectly said that the diplomat was expected to report back "later today."
Gambari had waited for days to see the reclusive military supremo in order to express global outrage after his regime put down demonstrations led by Buddhist monks, leaving at least 13 dead and more than 1,000 arrested.
After meeting Than Shwe in the remote capital Naypyidaw, Gambari made a brief surprise visit to Aung San Suu Kyi, whom he also saw on Sunday, in the main city of Yangon before heading to Singapore, UN officials said.
After landing in the city-state he was whisked away from waiting reporters and did not immediately comment.
Gambari's high-level talks came as activists struggled to assess the scope of the crackdown - for which the junta said it was not to blame - and to find hundreds of dissidents, monks and civilians who were arrested or are missing.
UN and junta officials told AFP that at least 1,000 people have been detained at the Government Technical Institute campus in Yangon.
"Since there are some journalists who are there able to report out, we would hope that those numbers are accurate. But it is possible that the numbers are higher and we would have a lot of concern about that," said Perino.
The US House of Representatives meanwhile voted by 413 votes to two on Tuesday for a resolution calling for the release from house arrest of Aung San Suu Kyi, and an immediate halt to attacks against civilians by the junta.
It also called on China to pressure Myanmar's generals and for the UN Security Council to act on the crisis.
A similar resolution passed the Senate on Monday.
Last week, the Bush administration slapped visa bans on more than 30 members of the Myanmar junta and their families, in addition to a punishing range of already enforced economic sanctions. - AFP/ch