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Obama to visit Myanmar Monday

Posted on Nov 18, 07:14PM | IANS

US President Barack Obama will Monday undertake a historic visit to Myanmar, one among the 10 members of the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN).

His trip to Myanmar will be the first ever visit by an incumbent US president in the country's history. In the history of Myanmar-US relations, the highest ranking US leader ever visiting this country was erstwhile vice president Richard Nixon who came here in 1953.

Obama will meet his Myanmar counterpart U Thein Sein and opposition leader and parliamentarian Aung San Suu Kyi in Yangon, to encourage the country's democratic reform, Xinhua reported Sunday.

Monday's visit comes in the wake of warming up of bilateral relations between the two countries following eased US sanctions in the wake of ongoing democratic reforms in this southeast Asian nation.

The visit also comes more than one-and-half year after the new government of Myanmar took office in March 2011.

On Monday, Obama will be flying in from Thailand to Myanmar's largest city and former capital Yangon for the barely hours-long working visit before proceeding to the East Asia Summit in Phnom Penh, Cambodia.