The US, UK, Canada and Australia marked the second anniversary of Myanmar’s military coup with new sanctions on Myanmar individuals and entities. The US Tuesday issued sanctions on six Myanmar individuals, as well as mining enterprises and the Union Election Commission.
In a statement, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken justified the new sanctions, reiterating that the US “will continue to support the pro-democracy movement and its efforts to advance peace and multiparty governance in Burma.” The UK Tuesday also announced additional sanctions on Myanmar on a further two individuals and two entities. Earlier this month, Canadian authorities added a further six individuals were to its list of sanctioned Myanmar entities.
The move was supported by the Australian government, which previously resisted imposing additional sanctions on Myanmar. Australia Wednesday issued sanctions on Myanmar individuals and entities, including members of the military. In a statement, Minister for Foreign Affairs Penny Wong stated:
Over the past two years Australia, ASEAN and international partners have repeatedly called on the Myanmar regime to engage in constructive dialogue and find a peaceful and durable resolution to the ongoing crisis.
Despite these calls, the regime has continued its anti-democratic actions against the people of Myanmar, including violence and recent steps targeting opposition voices.
Human Rights Watch have critiqued the limited enforcement of prior sanctions imposed by the US, UK, Canada and the European Union. Nonetheless, the organisation encouraged international coordination on sanctions to reduce weapons supply and foreign funding of the military junta. The two-year anniversary of the coup has revived international commentary on the military junta, with Amnesty International Monday calling for global action on the situation given alleged human rights abuses, including air and ground attacks on civilians.
The fresh sanctions also follow restrictions announced last Friday by the military junta, which limit the ability of opposition political parties to run in elections.