Obama orders US economic sanctions on Myanmar lifted

Aung San Suu Kyi
Leader of Myanmar's National League for Democracy party, Aung San Suu Kyi visits a polling station on the outskirts Yangon, Myanmar, Sunday, Nov. 8, 2015. (AP Photo/Mark Baker)

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama is lifting U.S. economic sanctions on the former pariah state of Myanmar.

The White House says Obama signed an executive order lifting the sanctions on Friday. He had announced plans to do so last month, when Myanmar’s new civilian leader, Aung San Suu Kyi (ahng sahn soo chee), visited the Oval Office.

Obama’s move marks the culmination of years of rapprochement between the U.S. and Myanmar that Obama has worked to facilitate. The Southeast Asian nation has pursued political reforms over the last five years following decades of oppressive military rule.

The U.S. has already eased broad economic sanctions on Myanmar, including prohibitions on investment and trade. But the U.S. had retained more targeted restrictions on military-owned companies and officials and associates of the former ruling junta.

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