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Myanmar’s President U Htin Kyaw resigns amid growing concerns about his health in recent months

U Htin Kyaw

Myanmar’s President U Htin Kyaw has resigned after two years in office. His office said in a statement on Facebook today that a new leader would be selected within seven working days.

The statement did not give any reason for Mr Kyaw’s resignation, but according to a international media, there have been growing concerns about the 71-year-old’s health in recent months. Mr Kyaw, who is a close aide of State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi, became the President in 2016 following landmark elections that saw the end of decades of military leadership in the country. Ms Suu Kyi was jailed for years under the military junta and is banned from the top job.

According to the country’s constitution, Vice President Myint Swe, a former general, will move into the role until a new President is in place.The government is facing international criticism over the Rohingya crisis.

A military crackdown has forced some 700,000 Rohingyas to flee over the border into camps in Bangladesh, in what the UN has branded as ethnic cleansing. The military justifies its campaign as a legitimate response to Rohingya militant attacks against police posts in August last year.

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