In Myanmar, Political Opposition Stretches Its Legs

BY Larisa Epatko  March 29, 2012 at 8:24 AM EST

Updated at 9:55 p.m. with broadcast video.

In plenty of other countries, a political rally is a familiar sight. But not so in Myanmar, also known as Burma, until last year when the government began loosening some long-held rules.

Under President U Thein Sein, the government has released hundreds of political prisoners, relaxed media rules and lifted some political campaign restrictions. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton visited Myanmar in December to verify the reforms and encourage more.

More recently, Myanmar invited election observers from the Association of Southeast Asian Nations to monitor its April 1 parliamentary elections.

NewsHour special correspondent Kira Kay of the Bureau for International Reporting traveled to the once-isolated Asian nation to see how the political scene is unfolding before the parliamentary polls. Tune in to Thursday’s NewsHour broadcast for the first of Kay’s two reports on Myanmar’s big political developments.

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