A look inside Burma’s elite

This video of the wedding of Thandar Shwe, daughter of Burmese ruler Than Shwe, has been making rounds for a while.

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According to the Youtube description:

Movie footage of wedding of Thandar Shwe, daughter of Burmese dictator Than Shwe and Major Zaw Phyo Win in July 2, 2006. Held at the Zeyathiri Beikman (lit. “Royal Building of Splendour”) and Sedona Hotel in Rangoon.

And as the BBC comments on the video:

The newly-weds were reportedly given $50m-worth of wedding gifts, including, cars jewellery and houses.

Most Burmese will not see the video, since internet use inside the repressive country is restricted.

But some of those who have seen the video, both inside and outside Burma, viewed the wedding as a tasteless extravagance in an otherwise poverty-stricken nation.

One local reporter told a Thai newspaper that people were asking themselves where the money came from.

“It’s outrageous, just outrageous, especially when you consider that most Burmese live in extreme poverty,” Aung Zaw, the editor of Irrawaddy, a publication run by Burmese journalists in exile, told Reuters news agency.

Than Shwe himself is seen in the video, walking stiffly at his daughter’s side in traditional Burmese dress – a rare glimpse of him out of military uniform.

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