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HOME  > Past issues  > 2022 July 27 - August 2  > Executions in Myanmar aim at crushing democratization
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2022 July 27 - August 2 TOP3 [WORLD]

Executions in Myanmar aim at crushing democratization

July 28, 2022

Akahata editorial (excerpts)

Myanmar's military authorities, which had toppled the elected government in a coup, reportedly executed four political activists, which elicited international criticism. It is said that 2,100 people were killed in violent crackdowns by the Myanmar army and more than 100 activists were sentenced to death, and that the execution of the four is the first after the coup. The executions present a challenge to the international community calling for a halt to violence as well as to ASEAN nations which were demanding the cancellation of the executions.

Those who were executed included prominent democracy campaigner Kyaw Min Yu and former Lower House lawmaker Phyo Zeya Thaw from the National League for Democracy (NLD). They, who had supported organizations resisting the military junta, received the death penalty in closed-door trials in January, charged with "terrorism".

UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres and the ASEAN strongly condemned the execution of pro-democracy activists, and foreign ministers of nine countries and organizations jointly released a protest statement.

However, China and Russia are reluctant to react to the Myanmar issue in the name of "noninterference in the internal affairs" of Myanmar. Their stance is preventing the UN Security Council from adopting a censure resolution and legitimizes the outrageous acts of the Myanmar military. The international community should band together to handle the issue without delay.

In Japan, Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary Isozaki Yoshihiko held a press conference to express "grave concern" over the execution of the four political prisoners in Myanmar and announced that Japan joined the joint protest statement of the nine countries. After the coup, Japan suspended new ODA projects in Myanmar, but decided to continue with the projects already in progress. Japan's ODA funding brings benefits to the Myanmar military through Myanmar's state-owned enterprises. Japan's National Defense Academy continues accepting students from the Myanmar army.

Japan sent a letter of invitation to Myanmar to attend a state funeral for former Japanese Prime Minister Abe Shinzo. This behavior must be criticized. Japan should immediately stop tolerating and fueling the Myanmar military's unlawful acts.
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