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Myanmar democracy icon challenges powerful army to amend constitution this year

  • Myanmar Daily Life-1.jpg

    Myanmar opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi, right, and pro-democracy activist Min Ko Naing clap hands during a public rally in Yangon, Myanmar, Saturday, May 17, 2014. Democracy activists joined Suu Kyi for the first time calling for an amendment to Myanmar's constitution, a move she says is necessary if next year's general elections are to be free and fair. (AP Photo/Gemunu Amarasinghe) (The Associated Press)

  • Myanmar Daily Life-2.jpg

    Myanmar opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi greets Buddhist monks during a public rally in Yangon, Myanmar, Saturday, May 17, 2014. Democracy activists joined Suu Kyi for the first time calling for an amendment to Myanmar's constitution, a move she says is necessary if next year's general elections are to be free and fair.(AP Photo/Gemunu Amarasinghe) (The Associated Press)

Myanmar's opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi is challenging the powerful army to help amend the constitution that is barring her from running for president in next year's general elections.

Her comments during a rally in the second largest city of Mandalay on Sunday drew loud cheers.

The Nobel laureate says that the army is duty-bound to safeguard the country and should not be involved in running the administration.

Myanmar started moving from a half century of dictatorship to democracy three years ago, but the army still lurks heavily in the shadows. The 2008 constitution drawn by the former military rulers gives the army 25 percent of all parliamentary seats, allows it to appoint three cabinet ministers and have veto power in changing the constitution.