A group of lawmakers whose countries comprise the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) is urging the Thai government to pressure Burma for reform before it chairs ASEAN's annual meeting next year. The group of lawmakers, which specializes in Burma issues, have signed a petition calling for the expulsion of Burma from ASEAN if it fails to implement democratic reform. Supporters of reform in Burma say allowing Burma to chair the meeting will cost ASEAN its credibility. Burma has been ruled by a military government since the 1960s. A pro-democracy party won elections in 1990 but was never allowed to take power. The United States says Burma subjects its citizens to arbitrary arrest and mistreats its prisoners.