Voters in Burma go to the polls shortly for by-elections that promise to be the most open contests in decades, with Aung San Suu Kyi among those standing. Her National League for Democracy (NLD) is contesting all 45 seats, vacated when politicians joined the new, military-backed civilian government. It is the first time Ms Suu Kyi is standing in an election herself. It is also the first time international observers have been allowed to monitor elections in modern Burma. The European Union looks set to ease some sanctions on the country if Sunday’s elections go smoothly.
Ms Aung San Suu Kyi spent a total of 15 years under house arrest after the military overturned her party’s landslide general election victory in 1990. While only a fraction of seats are being decided, the NLD is expected to enter parliament as the official opposition. With tens of thousands of people turning out to back Ms Aung San Suu Kyi and her fellow NLD candidates, the by-elections have taken on a huge significance, the BBC’s Rachel Harvey in Burma reports. Election officials in Rangoon and other parts of the country have been making final checks at polling stations, ensuring ballot boxes and booths are ready.
Full Article: BBC News – Burma and Aung San Suu Kyi set for key elections.