Suu Kyi meets with Myanmar president | News | DW | 11.04.2012
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Suu Kyi meets with Myanmar president

Myanmar opposition leader and former political prisoner Aung Sang Suu Kyi has met with President Thein Sein to discuss ways of democratizing the country. The meeting precedes Suu Kyi's historic entry into parliament.

Myanmar's opposition leader, Aung San Suu Kyi, met with President Thein Sein on Wednesday for the first time since being elected to parliament earlier this month.

The pair met at Thein Sein's official residence in the capital, Naypyidaw.

Following the meeting, Suu Kyi told the AFP news agency that she was "satisfied," but declined to reveal any details of the discussion.

Earlier, however, a spokesman for Suu Kyi's party, the National League for Democracy (NLD) said the two would discuss, among other things, democratization and the peace process with ethnic rebels.

It was the second meeting between Suu Kyi and Thein Sein since the former general took office last year. At their first meeting in August, 66-year-old Suu Kyi told reporters she believed Thein Sein was sincere and that he "genuinely wishes for democratic reforms."

Suu Kyi, a Nobel Peace Prize laureate, is to take her seat in the lower house of parliament for the first time on April 23 after a decisive victory in April 1 by-elections.

Her NLD won 43 seats, making it the main opposition presence in a parliament still dominated by the military and its political allies. The polls were viewed as a milestone for Myanmar, formerly called Burma, after half a century of military rule.

Suu Kyi has spent 15 of the past 22 years imprisoned by the former junta.

Thein Sein's quasi-civilian regime came to power a year ago after a controversial 2010 election boycotted by the NLD as unfair and undemocratic. The president then began a course of political reforms that have edged the country closer to democracy.

Western nations are beginning to lift sanctions on Myanmar in response. On Friday, British Prime Minister David Cameron is to hold talks with both Thein Sein and Suu Kyi on the first visit to the country by a top Western leader for decades.

tj/ncy (AP, AFP)