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Aung San Suu Kyi Holds Transition Talks With Myanmar President, Military Chief

  • VOA News

In this image provided by the Myanmar Ministry of Information, Myanmar President Thein Sein, left, shakes hands with opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi during their meeting at the presidential in Naypyitaw, Myanmar, Dec. 2, 2015.

In this image provided by the Myanmar Ministry of Information, Myanmar President Thein Sein, left, shakes hands with opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi during their meeting at the presidential in Naypyitaw, Myanmar, Dec. 2, 2015.

Myanmar democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi held talks Wednesday with President Thein Sein to discuss a smooth and peaceful transfer of power to the country's first democratically-elected government after nearly five decades of military-rule.

The brief meeting between the Nobel laureate and the outgoing president at his residence in the capital, Naypyitaw, was part of Aung San Suu Kyi's push for for "national reconciliation" talks, announced shortly after her National League for Democracy scored a massive victory over the ruling military-backed Union Solidarity and Development Party in the November 8 election.

She later held an hour-long meeting with General Min Aung Hlaing, Myanmar's military chief, at his office in Naypyitaw. Hlaing told reporters afterward the talks went well, but he did not go into details.

Myanmar President Thein Sein, front left, greets representatives of political parties during a meeting at Yangon region government office in Yangon, Myanmar, Nov. 15, 2015.

Myanmar President Thein Sein, front left, greets representatives of political parties during a meeting at Yangon region government office in Yangon, Myanmar, Nov. 15, 2015.

Military control

Under Myanmar's current constitution, the military retains control of 25 percent of all parliamentary seats, as well as control of several key government posts, including defense, interior and border security. Many in the country fear the military will ignore the results of last month's election and maintain its grip on power, just as it did in 1990, when it cast aside a landslide victory by the NLD and put Aung San Suu Kyi under house arrest for the next 20 years.

But the president and Hlaing have pledged to accept the results of the November election.

Myanmar's constitution prevents the 70-year-old Aung San Suu Kyi from serving as president, since her late husband and two sons are British. But she has suggested that she will rule through a proxy candidate.

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