Obama begins Myanmar visit

Newly re-elected US President Barack Obama arrived here Monday to kick off his visit to Myanmar, becoming the first sitting US president to visit the Southeast Asian nation.

As part of his four-day Southeast Asian tour to Thailand, Myanmar and Cambodia, which started Saturday, Obama flew over from Thailand after completing his first leg of the tour, reported Xinhua.

The Air Force One carrying Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton touched down at the Yangon International Airport.

Myanmar Foreign Minister U Wunna Maung Lwin, Yangon Region Chief Minister U Myint Swe and US Ambassador to Myanmar Dereck Mitchell greeted the US president.

Obama's visit came as bilateral relations have warmed following eased US sanctions in response to a wave of reforms which has been underway since elected President U Thein Sein took office March 30, 2011.

On arrival at the Yangon Region Parliament building, Obama met his Myanmar counterpart U Thein Sein who came back a day earlier from the ongoing Phnom Penh ASEAN Summit to greet him.

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