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Myanmar Military Junta Imposes Martial Law In Parts of the Country


Tens of thousands protested on Monday, Feb 8, 2021, against the military junta in Myanmar. (AFP)

After opposition protests against the coup, the military has declared a state of emergency. A big gatherings are prohibited, and there is a curfew at night.


The military group that took control over Myanmar has declared martial law after protests against a coup. Several quarters of the two largest cities Mandalay and Rangoon as well as other parts of the country are affected. The ordinances include curfews and bans on gatherings of more than five people, as well as motorized protests.

The regime imposed a curfew between 8 p.m. and 4 a.m. to suppress illegally behaviour The representative of a military junta had read a statement on the state television broadcaster MRTV that any opposition to the generals would be against the law. There were threats of violence and legal violations by groups "under the pretext of democracy and human rights".

After the coup, protests broke out in Rangoon and the capital, Naypyidaw, and the police used water cannons against hundreds of protesters. Demonstrations have also been reported from Mandalay and cities in several parts of the country. Tens of thousands are protesting for the third day in a row, and it is estimated that hundreds of thousands are taking part in a general strike.

The military now cut internet access in some locations.

"History repeats itself"

We expect a bloody crackdown on the demonstrations in the next few days, stated Mr. Soe Myint, editor-in-chief of the local news organization Mizzima News. He feared his arrest and is in hiding. History repeats itself, Mr. Myint said of the military's rise to power. By 2011, Myanmar had been ruled by the military for 49 years.

Armed police are blocking the street of Rangoon, Myanmar's capital, on Feb 9, 2021. (AFP)


Last Monday the military arrested Prime Minister Aung San Suu Kyi and President Win Myint as well as numerous MPs. Ms. Suu Kyi has been placed under house arrest on charges of illegally imported walkie-talkies.

In his first televised speech, General Min Aung Hlaing said that the state of emergency that had previously been imposed for a year was "to preserve and protect the democratic system." He also announced that he would give up power after the state of emergency and "free and fair elections" ended. He stressed that his government was "different" from the military junta.

Hlaing also said his country continues to welcome foreign investment. He announced that the pandemic measures would be lifted.

Military justifies coup with alleged electoral fraud

The military justifies the coup on charges of election fraud against Ms Suu Kyi's party, NDL. She contradicted the state election commission, which saw no election fraud. In parliamentary elections in November 2020, the military-backed party won only a few votes, while the NDL received an absolute majority.

The European Union and Great Britain have requested a special session of the UN Human Rights Council in view of the coup. According to British Foreign Minister Dominic Raab, it should take place on Thursday.


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