Myanmar military coup

Sanctions to enforce democracy and human rights (Press Release)

The Society for Threatened Peoples (STP) has appealed to Foreign Minister Heiko Maas to support the democratic forces in Myanmar with all available means, emphasizing that he should follow the example of the United States and bring sanctions into play – also at the European level. "Thousands of protesters, media and cultural workers, members of all ethnic groups in Myanmar, as well as exile organizations worldwide are unanimous in their demand: the military must return to the barracks, and the coup generals must be deprived of their power and sanctioned," stated Jasna Causevic, STP expert on genocide prevention and the Responsibility to Protect. "Germany and Europe must show solidarity and back up their commitment to democracy and human rights with decisive action." Otherwise, Causevic said, the situation might turn out similar to the events of 1988, when thousands of people were killed in the crackdown on protests.

Thus, Causevic demanded targeted sanctions against the military and its business empire, export controls and entry bans on members of the Tatmadaw – means that could improve the situation of the country's civilian population. "Myanmar's numerous ethnic minorities in particular have been suffering from persecution and oppression for years. Under a renewed military dictatorship, their situation will continue to deteriorate, there will be more and more tensions, and less and less chances for lasting peace," Causevic fears.

"In the UN Security Council, China and Russia will continue to block any initiative that could give hope to the people of Myanmar," Causevic criticized. "At least, additional aid measures for the needy and the refugees should be possible at the UN level." The STP therefore welcomes tomorrow's special session of the UN Human Rights Council, which was convened at the suggestion of Great Britain and the European Union. Presumably, there will be a resolution regarding the situation in Myanmar. According to Causevic, the announcement that the United States will return to the UN Human Rights Council as an observer are good news as well. Now, Germany must also do its part and exert the greatest possible political pressure to ensure that human rights and democracy will return to Myanmar.