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  • » 01/31/2011, 00.00

    MYANMAR

    Naypyidaw, the first sitting of Burma’s “sham” Parliament



    In the midst of junta propaganda and the indifference of the population, the two Houses begin their first working session today in the capital. First priorities, the election of new President of Myanmar. The dictatorship has imposed a strict censorship, denying access to journalists. NLD and Aung San Suu Kyi left on the sidelines.

    Yangon (AsiaNews / Agencies) - The first sitting of Parliament in Naypyidaw Myanmar took place today amid tight security and the general indifference of the population. People consider the new parliament shambolic, that will not bring about any change in the country: power remains firmly in the hands of the military, who have imposed a news blackout on the start of the working sessions of the two legislative assemblies ("Hluttaws). Among the first tasks, the election of the new (and first) President.

    Journalists were barred from attending the first session of Parliament, the result of November 7 “sham” elections. Since 1962 Myanmar a military dictatorship has been in power that in the last two decades has increased its hold on power. 25% of the seats are reserved for members of the army and the remaining 75% were won by representatives of the party close to them.

    A dozen journalists have reached the capital Naypyidaw, but despite the announcement last week, were not given permission to film or report. Networks of barbed wire surround the Parliament buildings; deputies have also been barred from carrying mobile phones and cameras into the chambers.

    The military junta is celebrating the day as "a new dawn of democracy." Critics speak instead of a window dressing that does not change the substance: the country which remains in the hands of the military leadership, led by General Than Shwe. The population is uninterested in parliamentary affairs, because they are engaged in daily survival.

    Representatives of the main opposition party, the National League for Democracy (NLD) and the leader of the democratic struggle in Burma, Aung San Suu Kyi, are excluded from the "Hluttaws" because they refused to run in the November 7 poll.

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    See also

    31/03/2011 MYANMAR
    The new government, a “puppet” in the hands of the military, says Burmese trade union leader
    U Maung Maung stresses the absence of “new faces” in parliament, where most are military or former military. The new president plays “the role assigned to him,” but will not share power. Trade union leader urges the international community not to recognise the government. For him, the dictatorship is weakening, “a few more shoves in the right places will lead to its collapse.”

    30/08/2010 MYANMAR
    Top members of Burmese junta resign ahead of elections, but power remains with military
    Ahead of November 7 elections General Than Shwe reported to have cast off uniform, while retaining control of the country. But no official confirmation. The new president chosen by Parliament, where Constitution grants a quarter of the seats to military.

    01/02/2016 09:51:00 MYANMAR
    Myanmar: New Parliament opens, first step towards democracy

    Today the deputies elected from the Aung San Suu Kyi’s Democratic League take up their seats in the lower house and upper chamber. In late March, they will elect the new president of the country. "This is a day to be proud of in the political history of Myanmar." The transition from dictatorship to democracy begins.



    04/08/2009 MYANMAR
    Activists and ethnic minorities together to promote democracy in Myanmar
    From August 11 to 13 in Jakarta a summit to develop a plan for national reconciliation will be held. It is the first attempt at a united movement the struggle for independence of former Burma. For Aung San Suu Kyi in the decision in the trial against her is "painfully obvious".

    26/02/2010 MYANMAR
    The Supreme Court upholds sentence for Aung San Suu Kyi
    The judges rejected her lawyers arguments. The "Lady" will remain confined until November and will not participate in elections. The lawyer for the Nobel Peace Laureate appeals to the Minister for Justice. NLD spokesman: The ruling confirms that the vote will not be "inclusive, just and free."



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