Burmese vote to retain Suu Kyi Burma presidential ban

Opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi speaks during a rally in the central city of Mandalay, Burma (May 18 2014) Observers say Aung San Suu Kyi has become increasingly frustrated at the pace of constitutional reform

A parliamentary committee in Burma has voted to retain a constitutional clause barring opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi from standing for president.

The clause bans those with non-Burmese partners or children from running. Ms Suu Kyi's late husband and two children are British citizens.

Parliament must still vote on the ruling before it is final.

Ms Suu Kyi has spent most of the last two decades under house arrest but was released in 2010.

Burmese President Thein Sein has embarked on a series of political reforms after the country, also known as Myanmar, went though almost five decades of military rule. However, critics say his reforms have not gone far enough.

The committee - packed with opponents of Ms Suu Kyi's party - was not expected to vote for a constitutional change that would allow her to stand.

Analysts say the final ruling is also a foregone conclusions.

The next general election in Burma is due to take place in 2015.

Ms Suu Kyi's party, the National League for Democracy, is expected to do well, but may have to campaign knowing that she cannot become president.

The BBC's Jonah Fisher says Ms Suu Kyi will now refocus her efforts on mobilising the public and holding rallies to call for a reduction in the military's power.

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