The United States on February 22 announced sanctions against two more leaders of the Myanmar military and warned further action as hundreds of anti-coup protesters defiantly demonstrated for the restoration of the elected-civilian government. The US announced that it was blocking any American property and suspending the entry into the country of two junta members of the new ruling State Administrative Council, General Maung Maung Kyaw, who commands the air force, and Lieutenant General Moe Myint Tun.
While announcing the additional sanctions on Monday, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken reiterated that the US “will not hesitate” to elevate its opposition to the crisis and used the former name of Myanmar. Washington’s move came just hours after the European Union (EU) also approved sanctions on Myanmar’s junta and ramped up global pressure over the military’s toppling of the government in power on February 1.
"We will not hesitate to take further action against those who perpetrate violence and suppress the will of the people. We will not waver in our support for the people of Burma," Secretary of State Antony Blinken said.
"We call on the military and police to cease all attacks on peaceful protesters, immediately release all those unjustly detained, stop attacks on and intimidation of journalists and activists and restore the democratically elected government," he said in a statement.
Earlier, US President Joe Biden had approved the sanctions on Southeast Asian nation on those responsible for the crisis and the ouster of Myanmar’s civilian-led government including the defence minister and three companies in the jade and gems sector. Further, even the US Treasury Department updated the sanctions on Myanmar’s top two military officials and accused them of playing a significant role in the coup. US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen had cautioned on February 11, at the time of announcing the sanctions, “If there is more violence against peaceful protesters, the Burmese military will find that today’s sanctions are just the first.”
UN Secretary-General António Guterres on Monday asked Myanmar’s military to restore the democratically elected government in the Southeast Asian country, saying that the “coups have no place in our modern world”. Meanwhile, as per the BBC report, at least two anti-coup protesters have been killed as of Sunday when the worst violence was witnessed in several days of demonstrations. The law enforcement officers used live ammunition to disperse the protesters in Mandalay and at least 20 people were injured.
UN Human Rights Chief @mbachelet calls for stronger support for social protections, free press and public participation in decisions in her opening speech at @UN_HRC.— UN Human Rights (@UNHumanRights) February 22, 2021
Learn more: https://t.co/AT8Wo243ZV#StandUp4HumanRights #HRC46 pic.twitter.com/kAZgBd6WcP