News ID: 211995
Published: 1046 GMT March 21, 2018

Myanmar’s president resigns 'to take rest from duties’

Myanmar’s president resigns 'to take rest from duties’

Myanmar’s President Htin Kyaw, a close ally of the country’s de facto leader Aung San Suu Kyi, has announced his resignation, citing ill health.

A statement posted on the president’s office Facebook page said on Wednesday that the 71-year-old president wished to “take a rest from the current duties and responsibilities.”

“According to the Myanmar constitution article 73 (b), procedures will be undertaken to fill the president vacancy within seven working days,” read the post.

Htin Kyaw, whose post is largely ceremonial, was handpicked by Suu Kyi in 2016 to run for presidency as she is constitutionally banned from the post.

He was elected president in 2016 elections which put an end to decades of military rule in Myanmar.

The resignation comes at the time when Suu Kyi has been under fire internationally for her inaction on a military crackdown against the Rohingya Muslim minority in the Southeast Asian nation. 

Since last April, Myanmar’s armed forces joined by Buddhist mobs have intensified their campaign of terror against Muslim families living in Rakhine State, killing them, torching their houses and forcing hundreds of thousands of them to flee.

Some 700,000 Rohingya have been driven into neighboring Bangladesh since last August by a major army crackdown.

The United Nations has said it has strong suspicions that “acts of genocide” have taken place against the Rohingya.


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