Six more Myanmar military figures handed United Kingdom sanctions for role in coup

Henrietta Strickland
Февраля 26, 2021

But on Thursday hundreds of supporters of the military marched through Myanmar's commercial hub Yangon carrying signs that said: "We stand with the defence services", referring to the junta.

Before democratic reforms eventually took place - a period during which Suu Kyi was released from house arrest, her political party agreed to participate in 2012 by-elections and press censorship was softened - Amnesty International estimated that Myanmar had more than 1,000 political prisoners, calling it "one of the highest of such populations worldwide".

Marsudi said she had conveyed the same message to a group of elected members of Myanmar's Parliament who were barred by the military coup from taking their seats.

Amnesty International reported that the military raped and abused Rohingya women and girls, and Médecins Sans Frontières reported that around 6,700 adults and at least 730 children were killed during this period.

Facebook was quick to capitalize on the changes, and soon began to be used by government agencies and shopkeepers alike to communicate. Military-controlled state and media entities are no longer welcome on the platform following either.

Numerous repressive laws used against dissidents date back to the country's colonial era.

"We're continuing to treat the situation in Myanmar as an emergency and we remain focused on the safety of our community, and the people of Myanmar more broadly", Rafael Frankel, Facebook's director of policy for emerging countries in the Asia-Pacific region, said in a post Wednesday night.

Worldwide pressure against the takeover also continues, with more than 130 civil society groups issuing an open letter to U.N. Security Council calling for a global arms embargo on Myanmar. British support for government-led reforms in Myanmar has been stopped and ongoing programs will close, and the United Kingdom will focus its remaining help on "reaching the poorest and most vulnerable in Myanmar", he said. He added, "Hate speech is certainly of course a part of that".

The pair asked not to be named after Myanmar's military warned last week that anti-coup protesters could face up to 20 years in prison if found inciting hatred towards the military.

Monday's pro-democracy protest is seen as the largest so far since the Myanmar military, also called Tatmadaw, seized power on February 1, putting the country's de facto leader Aung San Suu Kyi and President Win Myint besides several elected representatives behind bars.

Social media giant Facebook announced it was banning all accounts linked to the military following the army's takeover, saying the ban was precipitated by events including "deadly violence". "We believe the risks of allowing the Tatmadaw (Myanmar army) on Facebook and Instagram are too great".

The bans are also being applied on Instagram, which is owned by Facebook. It cited violence and the risk of letting the military use the platforms.

Military supporters - some carrying pipes, knives and slingshots - turned on the booing residents, witnesses said.

"There was so much excitement over the transition to a civilian government that it was often ignored that the military themselves drafted the constitution and gave themselves a central role in the hierarchy of power within the country". "They have put a lot of resources into using Facebook for propaganda purposes, to recruit soldiers and to raise funds".

"In cases like these, we're working to be as precise as possible, but we know we may miss some and we'll keep refining our enforcement", Lefevre said.

"We can and should do more", Facebook executive Alex Warofka said at the time.

Other reports by

Discuss This Article