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Myanmar's vice president resigns for health reasons

By Kocha Olarn, CNN
July 5, 2012 -- Updated 0129 GMT (0929 HKT)
Myanmar's Vice-President U Tin Aung Myint Oo (C) has resigned, citing health reasons.
Myanmar's Vice-President U Tin Aung Myint Oo (C) has resigned, citing health reasons.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Myanmar's first vice president resigns for health reasons
  • Officials have not said what illness he has
  • Military members of parliament will choose a new vice president

(CNN) -- One of Myanmar's vice presidents has resigned from his post due to health reasons, the government said Wednesday.

First Vice President U Tin Aung Myint Oo submitted his resignation July 1.

A statement read in Myanmar's parliament said the vice president was seeking extended medical treatment in Singapore because his condition is not improving. The government did not say what his illness is.

According to the law, a new vice president will be chosen by the 25% of parliament that is made up of members of the military, because the position is a quota reserved for them. That vote is scheduled for July 10.

Suu Kyi asks people to invest in Myanmar
Aung San Suu Kyi takes oath of office

The second vice president of Myanmar is Sai Mauk Kham.

Myanmar has seen dramatic changes over the past year.

In May, Democracy activist Aung San Suu Kyi and 33 other newly elected members of her National League for Democracy party took their seats in parliament, a leap in the country's progress toward democracy.

Myanmar's legislature has 664 seats, more than 80% of which are still held by lawmakers aligned with the military-backed ruling group, the Union Solidarity and Development Party.

The government has also pardoned hundreds of political prisoners, begun negotiations with ethnic rebel groups and embarked on a series of economic reforms.

Those steps have been welcomed by the United States, the European Union and other governments, who have responded by easing sanctions against Myanmar, also known as Burma. But international officials have also cautioned that the country still has a long way to go.

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