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World NewsThe U.S. is exploring 'additional steps' against Myanmar's military leaders, Blinken says

The U.S. is exploring ‘additional steps’ against Myanmar’s military leaders, Blinken says

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken speaks at a press convention on the Fairmont Hotel in Jakarta, Indonesia December 14, 2021.

Olivier Douliery | Reuters

The United States is exploring further actions against the ruling military junta in Myanmar, because the scenario continues to deteriorate, the U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken stated Wednesday.

“In the 10 months since the military coup, … the crisis only continues to worsen,” Blinken stated throughout a press convention in Malaysia, as a part of his Southeast Asia journey that is aimed toward enhancing relations with the area.

“It’s going to be very important in the weeks and months ahead to look at what additional steps and measures we can take individually, collectively to pressure the regime to put the country back on a democratic trajectory,” he stated throughout a joint press look with Malaysian Foreign Minister Saifuddin Abdullah.

Myanmar’s military regime ousted its former chief Aung San Suu Kyi in a coup in February, sparking fierce clashes between her supporters and the military.

A particular court docket within the military-run nation sentenced her to 4 years in jail final week, after discovering her responsible of incitement and violating coronavirus restrictions.

Blinken stated the U.S. is additionally “actively looking” at whether or not the junta’s therapy of the nation’s Muslim Rohingya minority would possibly represent genocide.

Last week, the U.S., Canada and the United Kingdom jointly imposed sanctions on Myanmar’s “military actors responsible for violence and repression” over human rights abuses.

However, Peter Mumford, observe head for Southeast and South Asia at Eurasia Group, identified that sanctions from the U.S. and the worldwide group would have little influence on pressurizing the junta to vary course.

There’s little or no, I believe realistically, that the U.S. can do to vary what’s occurring with Myanmar.

Peter Mumford

observe head for Southeast and South Asia, Eurasia Group

“What Washington is trying to do is exert more pressure on the junta in Myanmar to certainly refrain from severe violence and put the country back on a course towards elections,” Mumford advised CNBC’s “Squawk Box Asia” on Wednesday.

“And there’s a question about how far the U. S. and other countries will really want to go on sanctions —  given concerns that could have a negative impact on the population,” he added. “So really there’s very little, I think realistically, that the U.S. can do to change what’s happening with Myanmar.”

Malaysia’s international minister, who was additionally on the identical press convention as Blinken, stated the Association of Southeast Asian Nations must “do some soul-searching” over occasions in Myanmar.

The 10-member ASEAN bloc has been struggling to get Myanmar’s military authorities to stay to a five-point consensus plan agreed on earlier this 12 months, which incorporates ending violence.

“We cannot go on like this,” Saifuddin stated. ASEAN must look past the precept of “non-interference” to sort out the disaster in Myanmar, he added.

“ASEAN should also look at the principle of non-indifference because what happens in Myanmar is already getting out of Myanmar. It has gone to Bangladesh and Malaysia is now hosting close to 200,000 refugees of Rohingya,” he stated.


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