Hillary Clinton became the first U.S. secretary of state to visit Myanmar in more than 50 years on Wednesday, launching an historic mission to press the reclusive country's new leaders to sever illicit contacts with North Korea and deliver on democratic reforms.

Clinton's blue-and-white official plane touched down at the airport in Naypyitaw, the remote new capital of the country also known as Burma, starting a three-day visit which will see her meet the new military-backed civilian leadership and hold discussions with pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi.

Clinton is the first U.S. secretary of state to visit Myanmar since John Foster Dulles in 1955, and her visit caps a period of rapid and remarkable transformation in the Southeast Asian country, a virtual international pariah since the military seized power in a coup in 1962 starting decades of brutal authoritarian rule.

(Reporting by Andrew Quinn; Editing by Robert Birsel)