US to Send Ambassador to Myanmar

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Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said Friday that the United States will restore diplomatic relations with Myanmar, sending an ambassador to the country for the first time in 20 years.

The announcement came one day after Myanmar President Thein Sein issued pardons to free 651 detainees and political inmates.

Christian tribal people in Myanmar have suffered at the hands of the government, but a cease fire signed with the military junta and Karen rebels could change that.

About 40 percent of the Karen rebels are Christians.

Myanmar's armed forces have waged war against them for decades, mostly in an effort to take their land.

The Karen have also been targeted because of their faith.

Myanmar is a primarily Buddhist country. Christians are seen as a threat to the ruling military junta.

Tens of thousands of Christian Karen are living in refugee camps in Thailand.

--Originally aired January 13, 2012.

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