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Myanmar President, Close Aung San Suu Kyi Friend, Retires


FILE - Myanmar State Councilor Aung San Suu Kyi and Myanmar's President Htin Kyaw attend a photo opportunity after the opening ceremony of the 21st Century Panglong Conference in Naypyitaw, Myanmar, May 24, 2017.

Myanmar's president, a close friend of leader Aung San Suu Kyi, has announced that he is retiring.

A statement posted Wednesday on the Myanmar President Office’s Facebook page said that 71-year-old President Htin Kyaw was retiring.

The statement said his post would be filled within seven working days, in line with the constitution.

Htin Kyaw became president in March 2016. He was Myanmar’s first civilian president and the head of its first government to be elected in free and fair polls.

After Htin Kyaw became president, Aung San Suu Kyi became Myanmar’s de facto leader when she was named state councilor, a title created for the country's once-leading voice for democracy since she is constitutionally banned from the presidency.

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