Is there a Bright Future for Myanmar?

by Kyalyi November 20, 2015
After spending 15 years under house-arrest, Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, now 70, and her party the National League for Democracy, have won more than 75 percent of the seats in parliament. "It's not finished yet", she was quoted as saying in a recent interview, making it clear that this was not the end, but the beginning.

The defeated generals and the ruling Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP) have indicated that they will accept the result. After which, Suu Kyi called for “national reconciliation” meetings with Myanmar’s president, military commander-in-chief and speaker of the lower house of parliament. President Thein Sein and armed forces chief, Min Aung Hlaing, have stated they will meet with Suu Kyi once final election results are announced. Now, the world's eyes are on Myanmar.

The election is a big step for Myanmar, which has spent 50 years under military rule. But is it a step towards a bright future for the country? We highlight some videos from our curated collection to help understand this new victory, and what lies ahead.

Long Isolated, Suu Kyi Now Achieves Power

As Myanmar's ongoing vote count pointed to a landslide victory for the opposition National League for Democracy (NLD), its leader Aung San Suu Kyi told RFA's Myanmar Service in an interview that she was not ready to declare "a winning moment yet" and that victory in the November 8 national elections marked only the first step toward the goals of her supporters.

The 70-year-old Nobel laureate added that popular suspicion that the country's dominant military would refuse to honor the results were understandable, but that she believed that the nation "cannot be caught in the bond of suspicion."

DVB TV Bulletin: 16 November 2015

This news report highlights the resumption of Parliament, President Thein Sein's talks for peaceful transition, Suu Kyi's appeal to student hunger strikers, and continuing displacements in central Shan State.

On 16 November, Thein Sein met with all 91 political parties that contested the election and announced that he believes "the next government will do its best to continue to build on this good foundation".

Future Sino-Burmese Relations

The Editor-in-Chief of The Irrawaddy speaks with Bertil Lintner, a specialist on Myanmar political affairs and ethnic politics, about how the new NLD government would deal with China, which remains Myanmar’s largest source of investment, channeling between US$14- to $20 billion into the country since 1988.

After the government suspended the Myitsone dam project, and following public outcry over the controversial Chinese-backed Letpadaung copper mine project, some civil society groups felt a wholesale review of Chinese investment was imminent.

View more videos on the Myanmar elections here.