Saturday, March 6, 2021

Suu Kyi aide arrested as parliament members maintain symbolic assembly

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A key aide to Myanmar’s ousted chief Aung San Suu Kyi was arrested on Friday, days after a coup that sparked outrage internationally and requires the generals to relinquish energy.

Win Htein, 79, confirmed his arrest in a short interview with Reuters information company, saying that he was being taken by law enforcement officials in a automotive from Yangon to the capital, Naypyidaw.

He didn’t say what fees he may face.

“They are gentlemen so I can pick up the phone,” he mentioned. “We have been treated badly continuously for a long time. I have never been scared of them because I have done nothing wrong my entire life.”

The arrest got here after the streets of Myanmar’s largest metropolis have been crammed for a 3rd evening with the sound of individuals banging pots and honking automotive horns, voicing their opposition to the coup.

About 70 parliament members of Aung San Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy (NLD) additionally defied the navy on Thursday, as they convened a symbolic parliament at their compound within the capital, Naypyidaw, signing a pledge that they might serve the individuals.

The navy seized energy on Monday, detaining Aung San Suu Kyi and president Win Myint and bringing to an abrupt halt an uneasy dalliance with democracy that had adopted a long time of oppressive miitary rule.

Win Htein, thought of Suu Kyi’s right-hand man, “was arrested from his daughter’s house where he was staying at midnight (in Yangon),” mentioned Kyi Toe, a press officer for the NLD.

The 79-year-old NLD stalwart is a longtime political prisoner, who has spent lengthy stretches of time out and in of detention for campaigning towards navy rule.

Wrong route

Ahead of his arrest, Win Htein had instructed native English-language media that the navy coup was “not wise”, and that its leaders “have taken (the country) in the wrong direction”.

“Everyone in the country should oppose as much as they can the actions they are seeking to take us back to zero by destroying our government,” he instructed Frontier Myanmar within the coup’s aftermath.

Aung San Suu Kyi, who has been charged with illegally importing telecommunications gear over some walkie-talkies present in her home, has not been seen in public since Monday.

According to the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners, a Yangon-based group that displays political arrests in Myanmar, greater than 130 officers and politicians have been detained in relation to the coup.

2021 02 04T041754Z 917156459 RC2GLL98076P RTRMADP 3 MYANMAR POLITICS PROTESTS e1612432176154Protesters took to the streets of Mandalay on Thursday to denounce the navy after Monday’s coup [Stringer/Reuters]

Telecom suppliers within the nation have additionally been ordered to limit Facebook, the principle technique of accessing the web and communication for hundreds of thousands of individuals in Myanmar.

With Facebook stifled, extra Myanmar individuals have moved to Twitter in current days, or began utilizing VPN companies to bypass the block.

Hashtags opposing the coup, together with #HearTheVoiceofMyanmar and #RespectOurVotes, have been trending on Twitter in Myanmar on Friday, with greater than seven million posts citing them.

Civil disobedience

A so-called Civil Disobedience Movement has gathered steam on-line, calling on the general public to voice opposition each evening by banging pots and clanging cymbals to point out their anger.

At eight pm on Thursday, a cacophony of noise rose from the neighbourhoods of Yangon, with vehicles honking on the streets to affix the refrain of dissent.

“I haven’t been able to sleep or eat since the coup,” Yangon resident Win Bo instructed AFP, including that he was “a frontliner” throughout the 1988 rebellion.

That pro-democracy motion resulted in a bloody crackdown, killing 1000’s of protesters and monks who have been campaigning towards the generals.

“Now I am facing it again,” he mentioned. “I can’t accept this coup. I want to do an armed revolution if possible.”

So far, no large-scale protests have occurred, although small pockets of dissent have popped up, with medical medical doctors selecting to put on crimson ribbons – the color of the NLD.

‘Refrain from violence’

The coup has drawn condemnation globally.

On Thursday, US President Joe Biden reiterated his name for the generals to reverse course.

“The Burmese military should relinquish power they have seized, release the advocates and activists and officials they have detained, lift the restrictions in telecommunications, and refrain from violence,” Biden mentioned.

He spoke hours after his National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan mentioned the White House was “looking at specific targeted sanctions both on individuals and on entities controlled by the military that enrich the military.”

He didn’t give additional particulars.

The United Nations Security Council took a softer tack, voicing on Thursday “deep concern” over the navy coup – a step down from an early draft that sought to sentence the generals’ motion.

There have been calls on multinational firms working with Myanmar’s military-linked companies to chop ties as a method to stress the generals.

Japanese beer big Kirin mentioned on Friday it was terminating its three way partnership with a military-owned conglomerate. Kirin has been underneath stress for a while over its ties to Myanmar’s army-owned breweries.

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