Myanmar… Armed opposition increased its control and army retreated

Jakarta- The ruling National Security and Defense Council in Myanmar has extended the state of emergency for another six months, meaning the military is promising to hold re-elections after the coup on this day in 2021 and annul the November results. Has been. The 2020 elections, which were won by the National League for Democracy. The party representing the military, led by Aung San Suu Kyi, refused.

The military's electoral prospects have been gradually declining since 2010 and over the course of four voting sessions his party overthrew the last elected parliament three years ago on February 1, and all that was left was a democratic gap.

Protesters called on citizens to go on strike throughout the day on Thursday and not leave their homes and shops to show a state of general silence in rejection of military rule.

One of the strike coordinators said that one of its goals was to demand that the international community stop selling the fuel needed for weapons, aircraft and equipment to the Myanmar military in its war with the armed opposition, and a second goal was to commemorate the civilian Have to get it. Disobedience to the military administration by not paying any taxes.

Thousands of soldiers defected from the Myanmar army and joined the armed opposition.  Source: Opposition Accounts
Thousands of soldiers defect from Myanmar army and join armed opposition (opposition accounts)

high human cost

According to a statement from the strike coordination, which includes 73 anti-coup organizations, the strike is a call to every soldier in the army to separate from their leadership and defend their lives and the lives of their civilians rather than die in defense. Army leader.

After three recent years of military rule, the human cost is very high. According to the opposition's own Association for Political Prisoners, as of January 30, 2024, the military arrested 25,915 civilians, and killed 4,453 others. But according to other opponents, this list does not include many more people killed in the border states, as there are sources that say the number is many times higher.

According to the “Conflict Location and Armed Incident Data Project”, the situation in the Gaza Strip made Palestine the most dangerous location in the conflict index, followed by Myanmar and then Syria.

The military regime in Myanmar faces a growing challenge with the unprecedented advance of armed opposition movements representing various nationalities and minorities from the outskirts of border states toward the center of the country, dubbed the “Spring Revolution.”

The opposition is in a strong position

Opposition sector leaders believe they are in a stronger position than they were three years ago, and some of them speak optimistically about a future political transition whose broad title would be making Myanmar a federal or federated state. In which minorities are provided with rights to self-government in their states.

The opposition National Unity Government – ​​which represents one of the political fronts of the opposition – estimates that 60% of Myanmar's territory is under the control of armed opposition movements, and most of this territory is under the control of movements representing its own land. In addition to nationalities or minorities, who began to demonstrate and then turned to military action in the center of the country. They came under the umbrella of the group known as the “People's Defense Forces”.

Today, there is fighting against the military government in 12 of the country's 14 states and provinces, and one of those armed movements is the “Alliance of Brotherhood”, representing the Kachin, Chin, Karenni and Rikyan nationalities. There are Christian and Buddhist nationalities. It launched a massive military operation called “Operation 1027” in October. In the past, this resulted in control of many military headquarters, and resulted in cases of defection of soldiers and officers from their government. increased.

According to Dr. Sassa, Minister of International Cooperation in the opposition Government of National Unity, 18,000 soldiers have defected or surrendered since the 2021 coup, while others estimate the number to be around 10,000 soldiers, officers and police. Is.

Among the armed opposition movements is the “Arakan Army”, representing the Rikan Buddhist nationality in Arakan (Rakhine) in the west of the country. This army controlled approximately 160 military points and sites and two towns.

Myanmar riot police repress protesters against military coup (European)

a forgotten tragedy

A human rights report released by the Rohingya Human Rights Initiative indicates that the Rohingya are caught between the lines of fire from the military and the opposition Arakan Army, leaving hundreds dead and injured and thousands displaced during the past few weeks.

On the eve of the third anniversary of the coup, UN Human Rights Commissioner Volker Turk said in a statement that “in the wake of all the crises around the world, we must not forget the people of Myanmar who have suffered for a long time.” ,” noting that fighting between the military and armed opposition movements has led to the displacement of large numbers of civilians and thousands of deaths due to aerial and artillery bombardment.

The UN commissioner said that of the approximately 26,000 people arrested, about 20,000 were still in prison, and that 1,576 people died in prison within 3 years.

According to the UN statement, “The military's strategy focuses on punishing civilians who, in its view, support the enemy… Therefore, the military has targeted civilians and all targets protected under international humanitarian law, such as health institutions. And continue to target.” Schools,” pointing to the deteriorating humanitarian situation in Arakan State, which has impacted the Rohingya Muslim minority due to the conflict between the Arakan Army and the Myanmar Army.

Turki called on the international community to take appropriate steps to deal with the humanitarian crisis in Myanmar, including imposing targeted sanctions on the military to limit their ability to engage in human rights violations and their access to weapons, aviation fuel and foreign Including limiting. currencies

Army bypasses sanctions

The UN official's statement coincides with an investigation published by Amnesty International yesterday, Wednesday, on the eve of the anniversary of the coup, which showed through satellite images and navigation data that Myanmar troops are still fighting their military operations despite the US. Getting fuel for the planes. And European sanctions were imposed on them through intermediaries with exporting countries. For fuel, the organization documented 7 maritime shipments involving fuel tanks in Vietnam, making 2023 worse than the previous two years in this regard.

Added to all this is the impact of this internal war on the economic situation, which includes a contraction in the economy, a decline in exports, the closure of hundreds of factories and companies, a decline in the value of the local currency and, according to a World Bank report, an increase in poverty and unemployment. The increase in rates has affected more than half the population.

According to UN sources, in addition to the deteriorating economy in the country, the deteriorating security and humanitarian situation has driven 1.5 million people of various ethnicities and multiple states into internal displacement during the past three years, with another 70,000 also displaced. Demanding to happen. Refuge in neighboring countries like Thailand.

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