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Burma, officially the Union of Myanmar, is the largest country by geographical area in mainland Southeast Asia.
The country is bordered by the People's Republic of China on the northeast, Laos on the east, Thailand on the southeast, Bangladesh on the west, India on the northwest, the Bay of Bengal to the southwest with the Gulf of Martaban and Andaman Sea defining its southern periphery. One-third of Burma's total perimeter, 1,930 kilometers (1,199 mi), forms an uninterrupted coastline.
Its political system remains under the tight control of the SPDC, the military-led government, led since 1992 by Senior General Than Shwe. The military has dominated government since General Ne Win led a coup in 1962 that toppled the civilian government of U Nu. The country's culture, heavily influenced by neighbours, is based on Theravada Buddhism intertwined with local elements.