Burmese army generals announced a state of emergency in the country this morning, February 1st, allowing the military to appear to seize power and to rule the country for, what they claim to be, a one-year time.
Aung San Suu Kyi, President Win Myint, and other senior members from the ruling government party of the National League for Democracy (NLD) were detained in the early hours of this morning prior to the parliament’s official opening.
According to military leader General Min Aung Hlaing, the army was forced to carry out their actions in a response to alleged electoral fraud by the ruling NLD party in the election in November of last year.
The NLD had claimed a victory in the parliamentary election by a landslide. However, the main oppositional party, the military-backed Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP), demanded a new election and called for military support in order to ensure what they alleged as fairness.
The election commission rejected allegations of voting fraud on January 26th, reasoning that there were no major errors or conspiracies to impact the credibility of the people’s vote.
The military then appeared to ease tensions as they announced online on Saturday that it will abide by the constitution and democracy and act according to law. It also denied planning on taking power during the government’s transition period.
The detention against prominent NLD members and other activists took place since the early hours of this morning. Confirmed arrests are prominent rights activist and filmmaker Min Htin Ko Ko Gyi, NLD Central Executive Committee Member U Han Thar Myint, and several NLD MPs.
Soldiers were seen deployed at city hall in Yangon and tanks were deployed in some streets in the capital. Mobile internet data and phone services are reportedly disrupted. People reportedly remained calm and many of them were seen leaving their houses to buy food, visit ATM’s, and supplies at local markets.
Meanwhile, Thailand’s pro-democracy volunteer “We-Vo” has announced a gathering in front of the Embassy of Myanmar at 3:30 PM. to express resentment against the Burmese military and its apparent decision to take away its people’s democracy.
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