Myanmar's Military Coup: Everything you need to know

Myanmar's Military Coup: Everything you need to know

The army had declared a state of emergency for one year in the country and handed over the power to the commander-in-chief of the armed forces, Senior General Min Aung Hlaing.

Myanmar military staged a coup on Monday after the army detained Aung San Suu Kyi, the democratically elected leader of the country who led the National League for Democracy (NLD) to a landslide victory in 2020 elections, and other leaders of NLD ahead of a scheduled meeting of the country‘s new Parliament.

The army had declared a state of emergency for one year in the country and handed over the power to the commander-in-chief of the armed forces, Senior General Min Aung Hlaing.

What triggered the military coup?

The military grabbed the power via a coup after months of speculation before the opening of the country newly-elected lower house of Parliament. The military said that there was an “election fraud’’ in the general elections that were held in November 2020, alleging that there were ‘’irregularities” in the 9 million votes that were cast in the election, therefore, the results, NLD win, are not valid.

What was the 2020 election mandate?

Aung San Suu Kyi’s NLD returned to power after sweeping the election, winning 346 seats out of 416 seats. The NLD performed much better than it did in the 2015 elections. The military-backed Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP) did not recognise the election results and called for “free, fair and unbiased re-election”.

However, the Union Election Commission, which oversees the electoral process, rejected USDP claims and said that the election was done “fairly and free.”

Who is Senior General Aung Hlaing?

After the military staged the coup in Myanmar, it released a statement saying that it has handed over the power to the army chief, Senior General Aung Hlaing.

Aung Hlaing, who was supposed to step down as commander-in-chief after reaching the retirement age of 65 this year, has extended his run in power. He took over as military chief in 2011 when Myanmar was transitioning into democracy after decades of military rule.

In 2016 when the military intensified its crackdown on the Rohingya ethnic minority, Aung Hlaing was condemned internationally for presiding over the alleged “genocide”.

In July 2020, UK imposed sanctions on him whereas the USA has sanctioned him twice - in 2019 for his alleged role in "ethnic cleansing" and human rights violations.

There have also been reports of alleged corruption against the family members of Aung Hlaing.

International reaction to the military coup

India on Monday raised its concerns at the military coup and detention of Aung San Suu Kyi and said that rule of law and democratic process must be upheld.

"We have noted the developments in Myanmar with deep concern. India has always been steadfast in its support to the process of democratic transition in Myanmar. We believe that the rule of law and the democratic process must be upheld. We are monitoring the situation closely," a statement from the Indian foreign ministry said.

US President Joe Biden threatened to reimpose the sanctions on Myanmar following a coup by the military. In the UK, PM Boris Johnson condemned the coup and unlawful imprisonment of Aung San Suu Kyi.

European countries have also issued similar condemnations while China has urged all sides in the country to resolve differences.

Also Read | Explained: Massive protests grip Russia and the significance of Alexei Navalny

AD
No stories found.
The Bridge Chronicle
www.thebridgechronicle.com