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Myanmar Crisis

Fear and ambition in Myanmar: Why top general triggered the coup

Once accepting of democracy, Min Aung Hlaing takes sharp turn to oust rival Suu Kyi

Senior General Min Aung Hlaing, Myanmar's commander-in-chief, shakes hands with National League for Democracy party leader Aung San Suu Kyi before their meeting in Hlaing's office in Naypyitaw on Dec. 2, 2015.   © Reuters

YANGON -- Once known to be relatively sympathetic toward Myanmar's democratic transition, Senior Gen. Min Aung Hlaing on Monday led the military coup that ousted de facto leader Aung San Suu Kyi's civilian government and reestablished a military junta on Monday.

The move appeared like a sharp turn from the collaborative relationship he once had with Suu Kyi. But the precision by which the coup unfolded suggests the general was planning it for some time, driven by concern over the military's weakening clout and his own political ambitions.

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