President of Mynmar, Htin Kyaw resigns from office

Myanmar President Htin Kyaw Resigns – Reports

U Htin Kyaw was in office from March 30, 2016 to March 20 of this year.

U Htin Kyaw has been a close confidant of Nobel peace prize laureate and de-factor leader Aung San Suu Kyi.

After he became president, Ms Suu Kyi became Burma's de facto leader when she was named state councillor, a position created for the country's once-leading voice for democracy since she is constitutionally banned from the presidency.

Rumours over Htin Kyaw's deteriorating health had been mounting nearly since he assumed the position and it was reported that he underwent stomach surgery in Singapore in December 2016 and has since been receiving treatment in Bangkok. The reason for his sudden departure, according to an announcement from the President's Office, was that the 71-year-old needs rest-probably due to a long-suspected illness.

Local media say Win Myint, who resigned as speaker of the lower house on Wednesday, is expected to become the next president. The charter, drafted by the military regime in 2008, prohibits Myanmar nationals with foreign children or spouses from the presidency.

Htay added that Kyaw, who underwent medical treatment in Singapore in January, insisted on quitting.

Acting President Myint Swe was the pick of Parliament's military bloc in Parliament in 2016, when he and Van Thio came in second and third, respectively, in the Union legislature vote that ultimately put Htin Kyaw in the President's Office with 360 votes out of 652.

Domestically Suu Kyi still enjoys broad popular support but, two years into government, her party has disappointed sky-high expectations of rapid development and economic growth, while the Rakhine crisis has recast the worldwide narrative of the country.

But he was nonetheless the country's head of state and a key domestic ally for Suu Kyi within her party.

Some critics noted the abrupt timing of Htin Kyaw's announcement - as Suu Kyi journeys back from attending the ASEAN-Australia summit in Sydney, and contends with the mounting global backlash over the brutal military campaign against Rohingya minority Muslims in the country's western Rakhine State.

However, the Myanmar Government has denied claims of ethnic cleansing. "And also keep in mind that the new president might have to take over totally from Aung San Suu Kyi".

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