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Commander-in-Chief of Defence Services
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Flag of the Tatmadaw
Senior General Min Aung Hlaing 2017 (cropped).jpg
Senior General Min Aung Hlaing

since 30 March 2011
Ministry of Defence
Style His Excellency
Member of National Defence and Security Council
Reports to National Defence and Security Council
Seat Naypyidaw, Myanmar
Nominator National Defence and Security Council
Appointer President of Myanmar
Term length No fixed term
Formation 1945
First holder General Aung San
Unofficial names တပ်ချုပ်၊ကာချုပ်
Deputy Deputy Commander-in-Chief
Website Official website

The Commander-in-Chief of Defence Services (Burmese language: တပ်မတော်ကာကွယ်ရေးဦးစီးချုပ်) is the commanding officer of the Tatmadaw (Burmese language: တပ်မတော်), the armed forces of Myanmar.

List of Commanders-in-Chief[]

Commanders-in-Chief of Defence Services[1] Took office Left office Time in office Defence branch
Aung San
San, AungMajor General Aung San
[lower-alpha 1]
194519 July 1947 †1–2 years Myanmar Army
Let Yar
Yar, LetBrigadier Let Yar
[lower-alpha 2]
19 July 19474 January 1948169 days Myanmar Army
Smith Dun
Dun, SmithLieutenant General Smith Dun
[lower-alpha 3]
4 January 194831 January 19491 year, 27 days Myanmar Army
Ne Win
Win, NeGeneral Ne Win
[lower-alpha 4]
1 February 194920 April 197223 years, 79 days Myanmar Army
5Yu, SanGeneral San Yu
[lower-alpha 5]
20 April 19721 March 19741 year, 315 days Myanmar Army
Tin Oo
Oo, TinGeneral Tin Oo
(born 1927)
[lower-alpha 6]
1 March 19746 March 19762 years, 5 days Myanmar Army
Kyaw Htin
Htin, KyawGeneral Kyaw Htin
6 March 19763 November 19859 years, 242 days Myanmar Army
8Maung, SawSenior General Saw Maung
4 November 198522 April 19926 years, 170 days Myanmar Army
Than Shwe
Shwe, ThanSenior General Than Shwe
(born 1933)
22 April 199230 March 201118 years, 342 days Myanmar Army
Min Aung Hlaing
Hlaing, MinSenior General Min Aung Hlaing
(born 1956)
30 March 2011Incumbent10 years, 167 days Myanmar Army


  1. Founder of modern Myanmar Army, leader of Thirty Comrades, father of pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi. Aung San was offered a post of Deputy Inspector General of post-World War II Burma Army under Major General T. Thomas but declined. He never served as Commander-in-Chief of post-World War II Burma Army but became Vice Chairman of HM Governor's council (Prime Minister) and Defence Councillor (Defence Minister from 22 September 1946 to 19 July 1947 according to Myanmar Official History records).
  2. Member of Thirty Comrades, Vice Commander-in-Chief of PBF in 1945. Aung San chose him to replace him as a Deputy Inspector General of post-World War II Burma Army in December 1945. Became Brigadier and replaced Aung San as Deputy Prime Minister and Defence Minister when the latter was assassinated on 19 July 1947. Was made to resign from the post in February 1949 by AFPFL Government according to "Phay Phay Bo Let Yar by his daughter, Dr Khin Let Yar and other Myanmar official history records. Never was a Commander-in-Chief of post-World War II Burma Army.
  3. Ethnic Karen, forced to retire due to the Karen conflict.
  4. Later became President and Chairman of Burma Socialist Programme Party (BSPP). Position designated as Chief of Staff of Defense Services.
  5. Later became President.
  6. Later became Vice-Chairman of National League for Democracy.


  1. Maung Aung Myoe, Building the Tatmadaw, Appendix (6)

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