Aung San Suu Kyi meets Pope

Suu Kyi is heading to the United Kingdom next. "We don't promote relations with any country at the expense of another", Mr Kyaw Zeya said.

Rohingya Muslims have been murdered and driven away for years now - formerly under military regimes and now under Suu Kyi's faux-democratic rule.

They say the real blame for the Rakhine atrocities and attempts to cover them up lies with the country's powerful military which continues to control key security ministries. The proposal was presented on February 8. when Archbishop Paul Tsang in-Nam, the apostolic delegate to Myanmar and nuncio to Thailand (where he resides), accompanied by Cardinal Charles Bo, archbishop of Yangon, met with Aung San Suu Kyi at her residence in Naypyidaw, the country's administrative capital.

Francis in 2015 named Myanmar's first cardinal, tapping the archbishop of Yangon, Charles Maung Bo.

There are about 700,000 ‎Catholics in Myanmar's 16 dioceses.

Ms Suu Kyi has also played down the notion she was an icon, declaring herself "just a politician" and that required making "principled compromises".

Mr Kyaw Zeya, permanent secretary at the ministry of foreign affairs, said Ms Suu Kyi was not planning to visit the USA in the near future.

But given that the Nobel Peace Prize victor is not officially her country's leader protocol dictated that she sat to the left of the Pope during their audience and not opposite him.

Britain's Prince Charles and Camilla, the Duchess of Cornwall meet Daw Aung San Suu Kyi at Clarence House in London.

A Rohingya boy sit in a burnt area after fire destroyed shelters at a camp for internally displaced Muslims in the western Rakhine State on May 3, 2016.

The UN Human Rights Council (HRC) on March 24 adopted an EU-tabled resolution to send a fact-finding mission to Myanmar to probe alleged human rights abuse by security forces against Muslims in Rakhine. Observers commenting on this criticism point out that her position and that of her government is delicate since the military still have enormous power in the country and she has to move with prudence.

Myanmar, where Catholics number over 650,000, will become the 183rd country to have full relations with the Holy See, who in turn will join around 40 other states who have an embassy in Yangon.

It was the military that ran Myanmar for nearly half a century seizing power during a coup in 1962 and subsequently crushing dissenting voices.

For thirteen years the late cardinal was a political prisoner of the country's political regime, whose spiritual reflections written while he was imprisoned have been read all over the world.

  • Leroy Wright