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Myanmar's army seizes power, detains Aung San Suu Kyi

Newsdeck

Newsdeck

Myanmar’s army seizes power, detains Aung San Suu Kyi

Senior General Min Aung Hlaing (R) and Myanmar Foreign Minister and State Counselor Aung San Suu Kyi (L) at Naypyitaw International Airport in Naypyitaw, Myanmar, 06 May 2016 (reissued 27 August 2018). According to an independent United Nations (UN) investigation report issued on 27 August 2018 -- on main findings and recommendations into facts and circumstances of alleged human rights violations and abuses carried out by military and security forces against Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar -- the investigation panel has called for the country's military leaders to be investigated and prosecuted for 'war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide.' The Mission (independent international fact-finding mission on Myanmar), which was established by the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) in March 2017, names Tatmadaw Commander-in-Chief, Senior-General Min Aung Hlaing and five other military leaders as part of a 'non-exhaustive list of alleged perpetrators of crimes under international law' suggesting priority to the subjects for investigation and prosecution. EPA-EFE/HEIN HTET
By Reuters
01 Feb 2021 0

Feb 1 (Reuters) - Myanmar's military seized power on Monday in a coup against the democratically elected government of Nobel laureate Aung San Suu Kyi, who was detained along with other leaders of her National League for Democracy (NLD) party in early morning raids.

The army said it had carried out the detentions in response to “election fraud”, according to a statement on a military-owned television station.

 

COMMENTS

ANTONY BLINKEN, UNITED STATES, SECRETARY OF STATE:

“We call on Burmese military leaders to release all government officials and civil society leaders and respect the will of the people of Burma as expressed in democratic elections on Nov. 8.

“The United States stands with the people of Burma in their aspirations for democracy, freedom, peace, and development. The military must reverse these actions immediately.”

 

BORIS JOHNSON, BRITISH PRIME MINISTER:

“I condemn the coup and unlawful imprisonment of civilians, including Aung San Suu Kyi, in Myanmar,” Johnson said on Twitter.

“The vote of the people must be respected and civilian leaders released.”

 

WANG WENBIN, CHINA FOREIGN MINISTRY SPOKESMAN:

“We have noted what has happened in Myanmar and are in the process of further understanding the situation,” Wang told a daily news briefing in Beijing.

“China is a friendly neighbour of Myanmar’s. We hope that all sides in Myanmar can appropriately handle their differences under the constitution and legal framework and safeguard political and social stability.”

 

ANTONIO GUTERRES, SECRETARY-GENERAL, UNITED NATIONS:

“These developments represent a serious blow to democratic reforms,” Guterres’ spokesman Stephane Dujarric said in a statement.

“All leaders must act in the greater interest of Myanmar’s democratic reform, engaging in meaningful dialogue, refraining from violence and fully respecting human rights and fundamental freedoms.”

 

TOSHIMITSU MOTEGI, JAPAN FOREIGN MINISTER:

“The Japanese government has up to now strongly supported the democratic process in Myanmar, and opposes any reversal of that process,” he said in a statement.

“We strongly call on the military government to restore democracy as soon as possible.”

 

CHARLES MICHEL, EUROPEAN COUNCIL PRESIDENT:

“The outcome of the elections has to be respected and democratic process needs to be restored.”

 

ROHINGYA COMMUNITY LEADER, DIL MOHAMMED, IN DHAKA:

“We Rohingya community strongly condemn this heinous attempt to kill democracy,” he told Reuters by phone.

“We urge the global community to come forward and restore democracy at any cost.”

 

INDIA, FOREIGN MINISTRY STATEMENT:

“We have noted the developments in Myanmar with deep concern. India has always been steadfast in its support to the process of democratic transition in Myanmar. We believe that the rule of law and the democratic process must be upheld. We are monitoring the situation closely.”

 

MARISE PAYNE, AUSTRALIAN FOREIGN MINISTER:

“The Australian Government is deeply concerned at reports the Myanmar military is once again seeking to seize control of Myanmar and has detained State Counsellor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi and President U Win Myint.

“We call on the military to respect the rule of law, to resolve disputes through lawful mechanisms and to release immediately all civilian leaders and others who have been detained unlawfully.

 

THANT MYINT-U, HISTORIAN AND AUTHOR:

“The doors just opened to a very different future. I have a sinking feeling that no one will really be able to control what comes next. And remember Myanmar’s a country awash in weapons, with deep divisions across ethnic and religious lines, where millions can barely feed themselves.”

 

JOHN SIFTON, ASIA ADVOCACY DIRECTOR, HUMAN RIGHTS WATCH:

“The military junta that ruled Myanmar for decades never really stepped away from power in the first place … They never really submitted to civilian authority in the first place, so today’s events in some sense are merely revealing a political reality that already existed.

AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL, DEP. REGIONAL DIRECTOR, MING YU HAH:

“The arrest of Aung San Suu Kyi, senior officials and other political figures is extremely alarming.

“Reports of a telecommunications blackout pose a further threat to the population at such a volatile time – especially as Myanmar battles a pandemic, and as internal conflict against armed groups puts civilians at risk in several parts of the country. It is vital that full phone and internet services be resumed immediately.”

 

TOM ANDREWS, UNITED NATIONS SPECIAL RAPPORTEUR ON MYANMAR:

“What’s important is for the international community, first and foremost, to speak out very clearly, very unequivocally, this is unacceptable,” he told Reuters in an interview.

“The international community rejects what has happened, that leaders of the world are united in their revulsion of this illegal act and that the international community is committed to working together, to see that this does not stand.” (Reporting by Reuters staff; Editing by Richard Pullin and Edwina Gibbs)

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