Myanmar leader Suu Kyi casts her vote in November elections

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Myanmar's leader Aung San Suu Kyi makes an early voting for upcoming Nov. 8 general election at Union Election Commission office, Thursday, Oct. 29, 2020, in Naypyitaw, Myanmar. (AP Photo/Aung Shine Oo)

NAYPYITAW – Myanmar's leader Aung San Suu Kyi cast her ballot Thursday in advance voting for general elections that are taking place during a surge of coronavirus illnesses.

The Southeast Asian country confirmed almost 1,500 new cases of infection on Wednesday alone.

Suu Kyi, whose title is state counsellor, and the country's President, Win Myint, both wore masks and gloves as they voted in the capital Naypyitaw.

Measures are being taken to ensure social distancing at the polls on election day, Nov. 8.

Advance voting is allowed and encouraged for citizens 60 years of age or older in areas where there are lock-down type restrictions because of the coronavirus, and in cases where people are staying for work in places other than their official homes. Suu Kyi is 75 and the president is 68.

Tens of thousands of citizens living overseas have also already cast their ballots.

The election commission has ruled that the polls will be held on the planned date despite the coronavirus crisis in several areas, a decision endorsed by Suu Kyi and her ruling National League for Democracy party. At least two dozen other parties had urged postponement.

The commission has also canceled voting in parts of Kachin state, Kayin state, Bago region, Mon state, Rakhine state, and Shan state, all of which are troubled by various levels of unrest.