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Burmese gov’t officials, Suu Kyi visit Martyrs Mausoleum

Top Burmese government officials and opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi both held ceremonies at the Martyrs Mausoleum in Rangoon on Thursday to honour heroes of Burma, but they did it at different times.

Vice president Sai Mauk Kham at a ceremony to mark the country's 65th anniversary of Martyrs Day at the Martyrs Mausoleum in Rangoon on Friday, July 19, 2012. Photo: President's office

They came to pay respects to national heroes Gen. Aung San and eight others who were assassinated prior to the country's independence in the late 1940s.

The 65th Martyrs' Day at the mausoleum was attended by Vice President Sai Mauk Kham, government ministers and other officials, paying tribute and laying wreaths before the tombs of the martyrs.

It was the first time for a vice president, accompanied by government ministers, to attend such a state-level event in the more than one year after a new civilian government, headed by President Thein Sein, took office, according to observers.

Aung San Suu Kyi, the daughter of Gen. Aung San, followed the government delegation, as did other members of the martyrs’ families and diplomats.

Gen. Aung San, along with eight other martyrs including seven councilor members, were all assassinated at the Prime Minister's Office in Rangoon on July 19, 1947, before Burma regained independence on Jan. 4, 1948.

The scene at the Martyrs Mausoleum in Rangoon during ceremonies to honour the fallen heroes of the nation. Photo: President's office