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Gen Aung San image to appear on Burmese banknotes

Gen. Aung San previously appeared on 15-kyat notes in Burma as late as the 1980s.

The vice-president of the Central Bank of Myanmar, Daw Khin Saw Oo, told lower house MPs on Wednesday that the bank was planning to issue new banknotes featuring the image of Burma’s national hero, Aung San, as well as other prominent Burmese leaders.

Khin Saw Oo was speaking in response to a proposal by MP Thein Nyunt who said that his proposal had been accepted due to “changes in the political environment”.

“The political environment has notably changed,” he said. “I served this emergency proposal to celebrate the diamond jubilee of the 1300 revolution [a 1938 general strike] and stated solid reasons for doing so.

“I acknowledge the response of the Central Bank’s vice president to print banknotes with images of our country’s most prominent leaders. I would also like to extend my gratitude to the parliament speaker, without whose approval we would not have been able to discuss it.”

The Central Bank vice-president did not elaborate on which “prominent leaders” would be featured on the new banknotes. The current notes in circulation display images of a white elephant and a lion.

Regarded as Burma’s independence hero, Gen. Aung San is the father of NLD leader Aung San Suu Kyi. He was shot dead in 1947 ahead of Burmese independence. His image previously appeared on 15-kyat bills as late as the 1980s.