19 Oct 2010

Election observers 'not necessary' in Myanmar poll

10:23 pm on 19 October 2010

Officials in Myanmar say no election observers or foreign journalists will be allowed to monitor its first general election in 20 years.

The Election Commission said observers were not necessary because diplomats based in the country could monitor the 7 November poll.

The commission says journalists based in the country would also be sufficient to cover the election.

The military authorities say the vote will be a key step towards civilian rule, but the election has been criticised internationally as a sham aimed at consolidating military rule.