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Suu Kyi hints at possible government role


Myanmar opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi said Sunday that she did not rule out taking a government position if she wins a parliamentary seat in upcoming by-elections.

"It depends on the circumstances and it depends (on) minister of what," the Nobel laureate replied when asked whether she would accept a government post if offered one.

When a reporter suggested the post of foreign minister, she laughed and replied: "I will have to think very seriously about that."

The 66-year-old, released from years of house arrest in November 2010 soon after a controversial election won by the military's political allies, plans to contest the April 1 by-election in a constituency near Yangon.

A nominally civilian government took power in Myanmar last year, ending almost five decades of outright military rule, but its ranks are filled with former generals.

On Sunday Suu Kyi held talks with visiting French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe, the highest-level French diplomat ever to visit the country also known as Burma.

A total of 48 seats are up for grabs in the April vote -- 40 in the lower house, six in the upper house and two in regional assemblies.

The polls are to fill places vacated by those elected in the controversial vote who have since become ministers and deputy ministers in the government.

But the number of seats available is not enough to threaten the resounding majority held by the ruling party.

Relations between the government and the opposition have seen a significant thaw since the opposition leader's release, with high-profile dialogue between Suu Kyi and former generals including President Thein Sein.