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Sim Chi Yin documents beginnings of Myanmar's 2012 elections

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SIM CHI YIN, BURMESE SPRING PHOTO ESSAY

In anticipation of the April 2012 elections, where Aung San Suu Kyi, leader of the National League for Democracy party is running for a seat in Parliament, Sim Chi Yin traveled to Myanmar to capture the beginnings of Myanmar’s promising new chapter: 

A day earlier, I had been in another heady bubble of hope and energy: at a political rally to hear Aung San Suu Kyi, the charismatic Nobel Peace Prize winner who heads the opposition. Thousands of ordinary people, from the very young, to the old and frail, filled a field and lined the dirt track her car was due to drive down in Dagon Port Township, 90 minutes south of Yangon – waiting under a scorching late afternoon sun to catch a glimpse of her. Two hours and many false starts later, the crowd surged forward, straining against the human barricade of her party activists’ linked arms. A scram broke out, flowers were tossed out to the icon commonly addressed here by the respectful yet endearing term “The Lady.” She waved and smiled gently, standing erect through the sunroof of her car as it inched through a mass of people. 

Katerina Voegtle