By JOHN HEILPRIN, Associated Press Writer
U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, on a mission to open Myanmar to international disaster assistance, said the ruling junta agreed Friday to allow "all aid workers" into the country to help cyclone survivors.
Ban's comments came after a crucial two-hour meeting Friday with the junta leader, Senior Gen. Than Shwe, the country's most powerful figure. Myanmar's junta has until now refused to allow an influx of foreign aid and experts to reach survivors of the May 2-3 Cyclone Nargis.
The United Nations chief did not say whether Than Shwe had acceded to the most urgent request by international aid agencies — to allow their foreign experts into the hardest-hit region, the Irrawaddy delta.
However, when asked if he thought the agreement was a breakthrough, Ban told reporters: "I think so."