Asylum seekers from Myanmar were buoyed by the visit of their country’s democracy leader, Aung San Suu Kyi, and hope it will strengthen bilateral ties and encourage more private-sector investment in their nation’s struggling economy.

Suu Kyi’s visit this week is a historic event for the more than 8,500 Myanmar citizens who sought political asylum in Japan in the wake of the 1988 crackdown on the democracy movement, in which the military junta killed more than 10,000.

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