Aung San Suu Kyi Wins ‘Landslide Landmark Election’ in Burma

Burma’s Nobel laureate Aung San Suu Kyi has won a by-election for parliament, her party says, after a landmark vote that saw 45 seats contested.

Ms Suu Kyi’s opposition National League for Democracy (NLD) said she had easily won in Kawhmu. Official results are not expected until later in the week. The vote is a key test of political reforms, though the army and its allies dominate the 664-seat parliament. The NLD was competing in its first elections since 1990. Thousands of people who gathered outside the NLD headquarters in Rangoon danced and cheered at reports that Ms Suu Kyi had won her seat.

Even if the NLD wins most of the 44 seats it is contesting, the army and its proxy Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP) will still hold about 80% of seats in parliament. During the campaign, foreign journalists and international observers were given the widest access for years. The European Union hinted that it could ease some sanctions if the vote went smoothly.


Burma’s current government is still dominated by figures from the old military regime that ruled the country for decades and was accused of widespread rights abuses. But since 2010, when a political transition began, the government has impressed observers with the pace of change. Most political prisoners have been freed, media restrictions have been relaxed and, crucially, Ms Suu Kyi and the NLD have been persuaded to rejoin the political process.

They have taken no part in Burma’s politics since 1990, when the NLD won a landslide victory in a general election but the military refused to accept the result. Ms Suu Kyi spent much of the following 20 years under house arrest and refused to take part in the 2010 election, which ushered in the current reforms.

Source: BBC News

Image: CBS News

Bikinis No Longer Required in Women’s Olympic Beach Volleyball

Women beach volleyball players won’t have to wear bikinis at the 2012 London Olympics. A new rule announced on Tuesday says that participants in this summer’s beach volleyball competition can now wear shorts and sleeved tops. This new rule comes as good news for other countries wanting to participate in this event.

Athletes in the volleyball event have exclusively worn bikinis since the sport was introduced at the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta. Competitors could also wear bodysuits in cold-weather events. The important change was made to reflect cultural conventions of various participating countries.

“Shorts of a maximum length of [1.18 inches] above the knee, and sleeved or sleeveless tops,” will now be allowed, according to the new IOC ruling.


Since the Beijing Olympics, most beach volleyball competitions have changed rules to allow for more modest uniforms. It is an attempt to broaden the diversity in the sport, which tends to be dominated by athletes from Europe, Brazil and the United States. Allowing shorts and shirts can encourage participation from other countries with more modest cultural beliefs.

As the AP reports, the field at London’s beach volleyball competition won’t be dictated by world rankings, as in Olympics past. Qualifying tournaments on various continents will fill the 24-team draw.

Source: Yahoo News

Image: 98.1 CHFI