(The EU extended its sanctions against Myanmar Monday yet said it is keen to improve relations with the former Burma,
whose military junta continues to refuse to let a pro-democracy movement that won elections in 1990, take power.
The EU foreign ministers said they do not see Myanmar moving to democratic rule and again called for the release of Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, the pro-democracy leader who remains under house arrest in Yangon.
She has been in detention for 15 of the last 20 years.
In an annual routine, the EU extended its economic sanctions for another year.
These include a travel ban and a freeze of assets of enterprises owned by members of Myanmar’s ruling junta and people associated with them, including judges.
But in a statement, the foreign ministers also said they stand “ready to respond positively to genuine progress” in Myanmar.
“The EU is ready to continue its dialogue with the authorities of Myanmar and all other relevant stakeholders,” the statement added.
The EU foreign ministers said they plan to send “an exploratory mission … to hold high level talks in the hope of building trust and helping the political process” in Myanmar evolve toward democracy.
It was unclear if the authorities in Myanmar would be willing to receive an EU diplomat.