Myanmar’s UN envoy urges action against junta as bloodshed continues

YANGON (AFP) – Myanmar’s own ambassador to the United Nations (UN) has urged “strong action” against the junta, as reports emerged of scores killed in the military’s latest crackdown.

The country has been in turmoil since the military ousted civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi in February, with protesters refusing to submit to the junta regime and continuing to demand a return to democracy.

With more than 600 people killed by security forces trying to quell the movement, the international community has increasingly raised the alarm on the crisis.

During a UN Security Council meeting on Friday, Myanmar’s ambassador pushed for more concrete action – proposing a no-fly zone, an arms embargo and more targeted sanctions against members of the military and their families.

“Your collective, strong action is needed immediately,” Ambassador Kyaw Moe Tun told the meeting.

Anti-coup protesters walk with slogans to show their disaffection for military coup at neighbourhood area of Hlaing township in Yangon. PHOTO: AP

“Time is of the essence for us,” he said. “Please, please take action.”

An independent analyst with the International Crisis Group also warned the council that Myanmar was “at the brink of state failure”.

“The vast majority of the population does not want military rule and will do whatever it takes to prevent that outcome. Yet the military seems determined to impose its will,” said Richard Horsey.

“Its actions may be creating a situation where the country becomes ungovernable. That should be of grave concern to the region and to the broader international community.”

Beijing has voiced growing concern about instability, and has said it is speaking to “all parties”.