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Myanmar to begin new parliament session ending military-only rule

February 1, 2016 3:56 am

Hundreds of MPs are gathering for a new session of Myanmar’s parliament, set to choose its first democratically elected government in more than 50 years.

It will be an assembly dominated by MPs from Aung San Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy (NLD), which won 80% of elected seats in November’s poll.

But a quarter of all seats are reserved for the military, which also retains key ministries under the constitution.

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One of the new parliament’s first jobs will be to choose a new president.

Outgoing leader Thein Sein steps down at the end of March, but Ms Suu Kyi, who spent 15 years under house arrest, is constitutionally barred from standing because her sons are British not Burmese.

She has previously indicated, however, that she will seek to exert influence through the new leader.

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