Following the arrest of the leader of the ruling National League for Democracy (NLD) Aung San Suu Kyi and other leaders of the party, the Myanmar army has declared a state of emergency and taken control of the country.
Power would be taken over for a year, army television said. A state of emergency has been declared.
The National League for Democracy party, led by San Suu, won the November parliamentary elections with 83 percent of the vote. However, a quarter of the seats in the parliamentary chambers are reserved for the military by the constitution.
The military declared the election invalid, accused organizers of rigging the November parliamentary vote and called for a postponement of the new election period, which was scheduled to begin Monday.
Myanmar’s de facto head of government Aung San Suu Kyi, President Win Myint and other senior ruling party members were arrested by the army early this morning, NLD spokesman Myo Nyunt said.
Rumors of an imminent military coup had been circulating in Myanmar for days.
The British broadcaster “BBC” reported soldiers in the streets of the capital Naypyitaw and the largest city Yangon. Internet and telephone connections have been cut off in the capital.
Government spokesman Myo Nyunt called on the people to remain calm. The Secretary-General of the United Nations, António Guterres, had also expressed his “grave concern” about the developments in Myanmar. The U.S. government is demanding the immediate release of the detained politicians.
Before her arrest, Suu Kyi wrote a letter urging people “not to accept this” and “to protest against the coup,” her party said. She said the military’s actions would bring the country back under dictatorship.
The Southeast Asian country, also known as Burma, was ruled by the armed forces until 2011, when Suu Kyi ended military rule and introduced her reforms. Tensions rose after Gen. Min Aung Hlaing gave a speech warning that Myanmar’s constitution could be “revoked” if it was not upheld.
Suu Kyi, who won a Nobel Peace Prize 30 years ago for her opposition to the military and has been under house arrest for 15 years, is under international investigation for supporting military crackdowns on the Rohingya Muslim people in western Rakhine state.
She defended the military atrocities against the Rohingya people at the United Nations Supreme Court in The Hague in December 2019.
by Basit Abbasi – CCTV