The United States and President Joe Biden-led administration have condemned the reports of a military coup in Burma, as they call on the Burmese military to release all detained politicians, including Aung San Suu Kyi, and “reverse these actions immediately.”
Jen Psaki, the White House press secretary, said the U.S. is “alarmed” by reports from Burma. President Biden has been briefed on the unfolding situation by National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan.
“We continue to affirm our strong support for Burma’s democratic institutions and, in coordination with our regional partners, urge the military and all other parties to adhere to democratic norms and the rule of law, and to release those detained today,” she said. She said the U.S. will “take action against those responsible” if the steps “are not reversed.”
The statement by the United States is coming a few hours after Myawaddy TV, which is controlled by the military, announced the takeover of government in Burma by the Military, where they had cited a section of the military-drafted constitution that allows the military to take control in times of national emergency.
According to the report by Associated Press, the presenter from Burma had said the reason for the takeover was, in part due, to the government’s failure to act on the military’s claims of voter fraud in last November’s election and its failure to postpone the election because of the coronavirus crisis. A state of emergency has been declared for a year.
The National League for Democracy, which is led by Suu Kyi, said in a statement obtained by Reuters that those in the country should reject the military actions.
“The actions of the military are actions to put the country back under a dictatorship,” the statement read. “I urge people not to accept this, to respond and wholeheartedly to protest against the coup by the military.”
The United Kingdom and other world powers have condemned the action, while China seems to be in support, as the Military in Burma are reported to have said that they will b in control for only a year.
The military TV also reported that Commander-in-Chief Senior Gen. Min Aung Hlaing would be in charge of the country, while Vice President Myint Swe would be elevated to acting president.
Myint Swe is a former general best known for leading a brutal crackdown on Buddhist monks in 2007. He is a close ally of former junta leader Than Shwe.