First modification: 06/19/2021 – 20:02
The United Nations, through a meeting of its General Assembly, tried to reach a consensus to cut the supply of arms to Myanmar in the midst of the political crisis, violence and repression that this Southeast Asian country has been experiencing since the coup. of military State of the past 1 of February.
The UN managed to pass, albeit unanimously, a resolution that asks the member countries of the organization not to carry weapons to Myanmar amid the conflict that the country has been experiencing since the military coup d’état perpetrated against the democratically elected government of Aung San Suu Kyi.
Of the members present, 119 countries voted in favor of the measure, however 36 abstained, including Russia and China. During these months, Beijing has been accused of violence as the main ally of the military who forcibly rose to power and who dominate a large part of the country. The military leadership has received sanctions from the West, but not from China.
The Assembly also asked the military command to respect the results of the November 2020 elections, which gave Aung San Suu Kyi a clear victory and urged them to liberate this policy. The military accused him of fraud in the elections and of numerous charges, facts for which they justified the coup. Since February 1, the iconic activist has been detained by the authorities.
Numerous voices have warned of the “real risk” that exists of civil war in this nation. After the coup, thousands of people demonstrated for weeks in the streets and received brutal repression, something that has further entrenched the situation and that has caused the country’s many guerrillas to join the democratically elected government to fight the common enemy of both: the military.
Myanmar: “We have an alarming situation on the ground for all civilians because the health system collapsed completely & food security is also in danger.”
– UN Special Envoy Christine Schraner Burgener asks Security Council for timely support & action. https://t.co/kv8CcgVeme
– United Nations (@UN) June 19, 2021
The military junta forces have killed more than 860 people since the coup, according to the Association for Assistance to Political Prisoners. Although the military forces say that the number is much lower.
Among the countries that abstained or did not exercise their right to vote, the idea prevailed that the situation in Myanmar was a purely internal matter and that the resolution “would not help” to reverse the current situation.
The European Union ambassador to the UN, Olof Skoog, however, assured that the UN resolution sends a powerful message: “It delegitimizes the military junta, condemns its abuse and violence against its own people and demonstrates its isolation to the eyes of the world. “
The resolutions of the General Assembly do not have any type of binding power for the nations and it is reduced only to a political weight. Unlike the Security Council, nations do not have veto power, so an abstention by China means that it will likely not support ceasing arms shipments to Myanmar.
What was approved in this session has a much lighter language of condemnation against the military junta because the original was suspended on May 18 due to the profound differences between the member countries to approve it.
The role of key ASEAN
The UN has also urged the military to fulfill what they promised in front of the Southeast Asian regional body, known as ASEAN. This organization has tried to get the military to respect a series of points that allow elections to take place in the coming months and guarantee the safety of the protesters, something that has not happened.
ASEAN was widely criticized because it met with the military junta, which is not internationally recognized by many countries, and ignored the request for a meeting made by representatives of the democratically elected Burmese government.
Suu Kyi celebrates years under arrest
In all this context, Burmese leader Aung San Suu Kyi has served 76 years under arrest since she was detained by the military on February 1. Thousands of people took to the streets this Saturday with flowers in their hands to commemorate the anniversary of the political leader and Nobel Peace Prize winner who is the most visible face of the opposition to the regime.
Last Monday the activist sat on the bench in what is her first day of trial for the five charges presented by the military, accusations questioned on the international scene. Various accusations such as incitement to public agitation, violation of the regulations against Covid-19, the illegal importation of “walkie-talkies”, violating the Official Secrets Law and accepting bribes.
So far it is unknown where Su Kyi is being held and what her true state of health is. Suu Kyi appeared in front of other people for the first time on May 24 and her lawyers assure that she lives totally isolated, without knowing what is happening in the country with the protests.
With EFE and Reuters