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EU, UK slap fresh sanctions on Myanmar individuals, entities related to military coup

News Agencies | Updated on: 22 June 2021, 8:14 IST

The European Union (EU) and the United Kingdom on Monday slapped fresh sanctions on Myanmar state-owned entities and individuals related to the February 1 coup and the subsequent violent repression of peaceful protesters.

According to an EU press release, the 27-member European bloc imposed sanctions on 8 individuals, 3 economic entities and the War Veterans Organisation in relation to the military coup staged in Myanmar/Burma on February 1.

The individuals targeted by sanctions include ministers and deputy ministers, as well as the attorney general, who are responsible for undermining democracy and the rule of law and for serious human rights violations in the country. The four entities are either state-owned or controlled by the Myanmar Armed Forces, contributing directly or indirectly to the military's revenues or activities.

"By targeting the gems and timber sectors, these measures are aimed at restricting the junta's ability to profit from Myanmar's natural resources, while being crafted so as to avoid undue harm to the people of Myanmar," said the EU in the release.

The EU's restrictive measures, which now apply to a total of 43 individuals and 6 entities in Myanmar, include an asset freeze and a prohibition from making funds available to the listed individuals and entities. A travel ban is also in effect for listed persons that prevents them from entering or transiting through EU territory.

On the other hand, the UK imposed additional measures on the Myanmar Timber Enterprise and Myanmar Pearl Enterprise, two state-owned entities in Myanmar's extractive sector. These asset freezes will be enforced with immediate effect, and target the junta's ability to profit from pearl and timber, two high-value natural commodities that generate millions in revenue for the military regime.

The measures announced today will target the Myanmar regime's economic interest with new designations against the State Administration Council (SAC), the junta's ruling body, who continue to undermine democracy and brutally suppress Myanmar's civilians.

In a statement, British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said that the move sends a clear message to the junta that the UK will not allow financial support that props up the military regime following the coup.

"Alongside our allies, we are placing sanctions on companies linked to Myanmar's military junta, targeting the finances of this illegitimate regime. The military has continued its subversion of democracy and brutal killing of civilians. We will continue to hold the Junta to account and sanction those responsible until democracy is restored," Raab said.

He further said that the UK will also strengthen their Overseas Business Risk guidance to reiterate the message that UK businesses must undertake enhanced supply chain due diligence and should not enter into trading relationships that benefit the Myanmar military.

This comes after the G7 leaders on Sunday strongly condemned the military coup in Myanmar and the subsequent violence committed by the security forces on civilians. The group called for the immediate release of those detained arbitrarily including civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi.


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First published: 22 June 2021, 8:14 IST