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VOA English Newscast: 1400 UTC March 30, 2016

Htin Kyaw, second right, takes oaths as Myanmar's new president during a sworn-in ceremony in Myanmar's parliament in Naypyitaw, Myanmar, Wednesday, March 30, 2016.
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From Washington, this is VOA News.

I’m Frances Alonzo reporting.

Htin Kyaw, a trusted friend of Nobel laureate Aung San Suu Kyi, took over as Myanmar's president Wednesday after decades of military rule.

In a day full of ceremony and symbolism, Htin Kyaw was sworn-in, along with his two vice presidents and an 18-member Cabinet.

The new president spoke after the ceremony.

He says "The new government will implement our democratic constitution, and our constitution will promote national reconciliation and internal peace, adding that it will support the creation of a democratic federal union, and bring better lives to the people."

You could hear more details on that ceremony at

UN chief Ban Ki-moon Wednesday called for greater global efforts to tackle the Syrian refugee crisis, as he opened a conference on securing resettlement places for nearly half a million of those displaced by the five-year conflict.

“We are facing the biggest refugee displacement crisis of our time. The world must rise to the challenge. Providing hope means providing pathways for a better future.”

Ban also told journalists after his speech that "attempts to demonize people fleeing conflict are not only demeaning, offensive and counter-productive, and are factually wrong,"

Meanwhile, Syrian security forces are clearing mines and disarming other explosives left scattered around by the Islamic State group in Palmyra.

This Syrian soldier says the roads have been set to cause great damage.

He says "The terrorist organization has booby-trapped the entire area with wires and a power circuit in order to blow those up and to destroy the town with its residents."

This is VOA News.


Words in This Newscast

laureate – n. someone who has won a major prize or work in an art or science

took over – v. take control

decade – n. a period of 10 years

symbolism – n. the use of images or signs to express or represent ideas or qualities

implement – v. carry out

promote – v. to begin to do or use something

reconciliation – n. the act of making two people or groups become friendly again after a disagreement

global – adj. involving the whole world

tackle – v. deal with

challenge – n. a difficult problem or issue

journalist – n. a news media worker or reporter

demonize – v. to describe someone as evil or threatening

demeaning – adj. causing someone to lose their respect of others

counter-productive – adj. having the opposite of the desired effect

meanwhile – adv. at the same time

scattered – v. moving in different directions

booby-trapped – v. to set up like a bomb that explodes when the object connected to it is touched or moved

circuit – n. the path on which an electric current travels

resident – n. a person who lives in a set place

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