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Army of candidates in Myanmar

world Updated: Aug 31, 2010 23:53 IST
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Myanmar's two pro-junta parties have submitted large candidate lists for the country's November 7 general election, dwarfing the number of pro-democracy candidates, party sources said on Tuesday.

Parties had to submit their candidate lists to the election commission on Monday to qualify for the November 7 polls, Myanmar's first in two decades.

The pro-junta Union Solidarity Development Party, whose membership is packed with retired military men, will field 1,163 candidates, enough to fight all contested seats in the lower, upper and regional houses of parliament.

Another pro-government party, the National Unity Party, has registered 994 candidates, the party's executive committee member Han Shwe said.

Myanmar's two main pro-democracy parties, the National Democratic Force and Democratic Party Myanmar (DPM), have only registered 160 and 49 candidates, respectively.

“We could only register 49 candidates because of a lack of money,” DPM chief general secretary Than Than Nu said when asked about the issue.