Wednesday, February 24, 2021

After the military coup in Myanmar: USA tighten sanctions against military junta


Status: 02/23/2021 11:02 a.m.

After the coup in Myanmar, the US government imposed sanctions on other military personnel. Foreign Minister Blinken threatened further punitive measures. The G7 countries demand the release of “arbitrarily detained persons”.

The US has tightened its sanctions against the military junta in Myanmar: Punitive measures were imposed on two other members of the military government installed after the coup on February 1, as US Secretary of State Antony Blinken announced. The sanctions are directed against the commander of the Air Force, General Maung Maung Kyaw, and against Lieutenant General Moe Myint Tun. They are part of the new command apparatus in Myanmar.

The two military men are prohibited from entering the United States. Potential assets of the two generals in the United States will also be frozen. The US Secretary of State demanded that the generals stop suppressing peaceful protests, release the wrongly arrested people and return to democracy.

Flashing threatens to take further action

The US government had already imposed sanctions on ten other military leaders in Myanmar in early February. Due to the sanctions, all property belonging to the individuals and companies concerned in the USA will be frozen. US companies and individuals are also prohibited from doing business with them. If the sanctioned persons do not have any property in the USA, any international business will become much more difficult for them, among other things because Western banks are now likely to shy away from doing business.

Blinken threatened the military junta with further sanctions: “We will not hesitate to take further measures against those who exercise violence and suppress the will of the people.” He appealed to the army and police of the Southeast Asian country to stop all attacks on peaceful demonstrators, to release people wrongly detained, to stop the “intimidation of journalists and activists” and to reinstate the democratically elected government.

UN Human Rights Council calls for an end to the repression in Myanmar

Wolfgang Wanner, ARD Geneva, daily news 8 p.m., February 22, 2021

G7 countries condemn attacks on demonstrators

The EU foreign ministers had previously decided to impose sanctions on representatives of the military in Myanmar. However, after the decision in principle, a specific list of those affected still has to be worked out and approved separately.

The foreign ministers of the G7 countries have since issued a joint statement condemning the violent repression of the security forces against peaceful demonstrators “emphatically”. “The use of live ammunition against unarmed people is unacceptable,” wrote the representatives of the G7 and the EU foreign affairs representative Josep Borrell. The military and the police must exercise extreme restraint and respect human rights and international law. Anyone who reacts to peaceful protests with violence must be held accountable.

“We express our condolences with regard to the loss of human life,” said the statement by Federal Foreign Minister Heiko Maas (SPD) and his colleagues from France, Italy, Japan, Canada, Great Britain and the USA. “We condemn the intimidation and repression of the people who oppose the coup.” The foreign ministers criticized “the crackdown on freedom of expression, including the Internet bans and the drastic changes to the law to restrict freedom of speech.” They also called for the release of all “people arbitrarily detained, including State Councilor Aung San Suu Kyi and President Win Myint”.

UN Human Rights Council deals with situation

The UN Human Rights Council has already dealt with the situation in Myanmar. UN General Secretary António Guterres called on the military to stop suppressing the population immediately. “Release the prisoners. End the violence. Respect human rights and the will of the people expressed in the recent election.” Putschs have no place in the modern world, Guterres said.

Protesters demand the reinstatement of Aung San Suu Kyi

The February 1st military coup ended a decade of democratic change in the Southeast Asian country. On that day, the newly elected parliament in November should have met for its first session. Instead, the military arrested the de facto head of government Aung San Suu Kyi, whose National League for Democracy (NDL) party had won the election by a large margin. The military speaks of fraud.

Since then, there have been massive protests in the country – the military use force against demonstrators who are demanding the reinstatement of Aung San Suu Kyi. So far, four people have been killed in the protests and more than 600 arrested.



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