Than Shwe is currently in Singapore being treated for an unknown illness—he may have to miss the Independence Day (Lutlatyay nay) celebrations in Burma, on January 4. Various news sources offer different explanations for what he is in hospital for, though.
According to All Headline News,
The general has been admitted to Singapore General Hospital at Outram Park for treatment of a coronary artery blockage.
– “Burmese Senior General In Singapore For Medical Check-Up”, 2 Jan 2007
Mizzima News states
“However, his health has not been good this year and there has not been much improvement in his recurring chest pain even after his doctor Dr. Kyaw Myint’s treatment.
– “Than Shwe in Singapore for medical check-up”, 1 Jan 2007
The following day, Mizzima News, stated
Analysts believe that his condition is not serious, although the blockage problem, has persisted for some months now.
– “Than Shwe in hospital”, 2 Jan 2007
An informed source in the government said Than Shwe, ailing for the past year, was suffering from a tumour in his intestines.
– “Myanmar junta head to be treated in Singapore”, 1 Jan 2007
According to the news, which is often very difficult to verify, Than Shwe may be suffering from a intestinal tumor or coronary artery blockage. Can this possibly be a sign of future handing of power to Shwe Mann, chief-of-staff? Government newspapers remain silent over this situation, and according to Mizzima News, the Burmese embassy in Singapore has been ordered to remain silent as well.
One can only hope whether Than Shwe will be deposed, or forced to resign due to ill health, although he may just become the “legitimate” president, under the new military-directed constitutional convention.