Two years after the military coup, “Japan’s role in the democratization of Myanmar”, armed oppression continues | Series “Asia Watch” Daisuke Sato | Courier Japon

Aung San Suu Kyi, who has been imprisoned since the coup, was sentenced to 33 years in prison and a fixed-term sentence.
Photo by Sirachai Arunrugstichai/Getty Images

While the world is closely watching the war in Ukraine, the military’s persecution of civilians continues in Myanmar two years after a military coup. Now that neither the UN nor ASEAN can find a solution to a military government that continues to disregard democracy, what is Japan to do?

February 24 marks the one-year anniversary of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. While European and American countries have successively announced that they will provide Ukraine with military assistance, including the most advanced tanks, the outside world has been worried that the Russian army will launch a large-scale offensive.

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has been criticized by many in the international community as a “challenge to democracy,” and there is growing interest in the outcome of the war.

However, we must not forget that there are countries where democracy has been trampled by military regimes and people continue to resist. On February 1, 2021, the Myanmar military launched a coup, declared a state of emergency, and seized power. Two years after the coup, the junta declared an extended state of emergency with no hope of a breakthrough.

What does “extending the state of emergency” mean?

“(Democratic forces) are trying to usurp state power.”

On February 1, 2023, Myanmar National Television announced the extension of the state of emergency for six months, criticizing the actions of pro-democracy forces against the military government as acts of violence. The constitution stipulates that the state of emergency cannot be extended for more than two years and that general elections must be held within six months of its end. The general election, originally scheduled for August, is certain to be postponed.

“The stability of the country is crucial for the holding of elections and more time is needed,” Supreme Military Commander General Min Aung Hlaing said, according to state television. Yes.

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Daisuke Sato Kyodo News editorial board member and editorial writer. Born in Hokkaido in 1972. Joined Mainichi Shimbun after graduating from the Faculty of Law, Meiji Gakuin University. Joined Kyodo in 2002 after working in the Nagano branch and the social department. In 2006, he was assigned to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Information. Reporter based in Seoul from March 2009 to the end of 2011. From September 2016 to May 2020, as a reporter based in New Delhi, India, he serialized “The Indian Economy That Japanese Don’t Know” in “Courier Japan”. His books include “1.3 Billion Toilets: India’s Economic Power from the Ground Up” (Kadokawa Shinshu), “Korean Audition Association” (Shinchosha), “People Facing the Death Penalty” (Iwanami Shoten), “Reportage, Death Penalty, Judicial Ministry” ga Hitata “There is a hidden reality of the death penalty” (Gentosha Shinsho).

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