Myanmar’s civilian President, Htin Kyaw, has resigned with immediate effect.His office said in a statement posted on Facebook today the decision was taken in order to take rest from the current duties and responsibilities.

Htin Kyaw, whose post is largely ceremonial, was a close ally of the country’s de facto leader, Aung San Suu Kyi.

He was handpicked by the Nobel peace prize laureate to become President because a constitution drafted by the country’s former junta bars her from the top office.

There had been speculation in the local media for some months that Htin Kyaw was in ill-health, but this was denied by officials.