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General Than Shwe to visit India

Myanmar head of state Senior General Than Shwe will be undertaking a crucial visit to India later this month as he tries to garner international support for his regime's efforts to bring about what he calls "disciplined democracy".Aung San Suu Kyi's National League for Democracy (NLD) has rejected the regime's move a decision that is said to have split the NLD with another group willing to contest the polls.
Than Shwe have ordered his cabinet colleagues to take retirement from the military ahead of the polls in order to provide a civilian veneer to the current regime but this decision has apparently not gone down well with his colleagues as 25 per cent seats in the new parliament are reserved for serving military officers.
Than Shwe heads to New Delhi to meet Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and do the Buddhist circuit thus to improve his International relations.
India,moving ahead in improving road connectivity and reopening the historic Stillwell Road. India in the past proposed to help Burma with institution building thus offered parliamentary training programmes to Myanmar's officials.Foreign Secretary Nirupama Rao visit to Myanmar's new capital Nay Pyi Taw for consultations in March,conveyed India is eager to increase investment in the infrastructure sector besides further cooperation in oil and natural gas exploration.

US initiating a dialogue with Myanmar when did not find the Myanmar regime to road of democracy,US envoy Kurt Campbell has cancelled his next visit. With Myanmar image building exercise, Than Shwe planned electoral exercise to improve Myanmar's image his visit to India in July last week is being seen in image building perspective.More significant is that he has decided to first visit India and then make a trip to China after a few weeks.For eighteen years Than Shwe ruled Myanmar through a cluster of military officials nodal part of the State Peace and Development Council with twenty one senior military officials chief organizers of the 1988 coup under Gen Saw Maung, Than Shwe took over the reigns in 1992 after Saw Maung suddenly resigned then pulled Myanmar into military rule for nearly two decades, the regime has been under immense international pressure to restore democracy.

Than Shwe visit to China will ease tension in Sino-Myanmar relationship.Military regime wants to revisit some of the China-brokered agreements with ethnic minority groups in North-East Myanmar where these ethnic groups been allowed to retain their arms back in the late 80s with a degree of assured autonomy.
Beijing used the common border and ethnic affinity in those areas to keep the groups under its influence which has always irked the military regime,has sought to project itself as the unifier in Myanmar.


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