Myanmar's ruling party claimed a resounding victory on Monday in the second parliamentary election since the end of oppressive military rule, according to its own unofficial tally of votes.
Aung San Suu Kyi's ruling party claims resounding election win in Myanmar
Sunday's election was viewed as a referendum on the fledgling democratic government led by Nobel laureate Aung San Suu Kyi and her National League for Democracy (NLD), which won a landslide in 2015.
The NLD remains popular at home -- but has seen its international reputation battered by accusations of genocide against the ethnic Rohingya Muslim minority. Suu Kyi, too, is no longer viewed as a democracy icon in the West after her handling of the military crackdown on the Rohingya.
After the election, NLD spokesman Myo Nyunt told Reuters it had won many more than the 322 seats in parliament needed to form a government, based on data compiled from reports by party agents at polling stations nationwide -- though he gave no specific estimate.
"For the people, for the party, this is such an encouraging election result," he said, adding that the NLD expected to exceed the total of 390 seats it took in 2015.
The Election Commission had been expected to release results on Monday but had only published a handful by the evening, as candidates and parties posted their own data online.
There were 315 seats up for grabs in the 425-member lower house, and 161 seats in the 217-seat upper house of parliament.
Reuters could not immediately reach a spokesman for the second biggest party, the military-backed Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP).
The European Union and Britain commended Myanmar for the vote but criticized the disenfranchisement of more than a million voters, including hundreds of thousands of Rohingya Muslims in Rakhine state.