By Spy Uganda Correspondent
Myanmar’s military junta, which overturned the results of democratic elections when it seized power last Monday, has warned the public not to “destroy” democracy following four days of protests.
In a statement on the government-run MRTV channel, the military warned that “democracy can be destroyed” without discipline, and that people who “harm the state’s stability, public safety and the rule of law” could face legal action.
The warning came as two people were seriously injured in the capital Naypyidaw on Tuesday after police officers allegedly shot at protesters, according to the political party of deposed leader Aung San Su Kyi.
The US State Department said that it was “very concerned” about military-imposed restrictions on public gatherings and offered support for the country’s peaceful protests.
“We stand with the people who support their right to assemble peacefully, including to protest peacefully in support of the democratically elected governments, and the right to freedom of expression, including the freedom to seek to receive to impart information both online and offline,” said spokesman Ned Price.
United Nations spokesperson Stephane Dujarric said that measures imposed by Myanmar’s military rulers, such as rolling internet blackouts, are “concerning” and limit abilities of citizens to speak up. The UN Human Rights Council will hold a special session on Myanmar on Friday.
In his first public televised address since seizing power, Gen. Min Aung Hlaing on Monday told citizens to prioritize “facts” not “feelings,” pledged to hold “free and fair” elections and hand over power to the winner.
Min Aung Hlaing justified his army’s seizure of power by claiming Myanmar’s electoral commission used the Covid-19 pandemic as an excuse to not allow fair campaigning, and said “no organization is above national interest.”
The election commission has denied the claims, saying any irregularities would not have been enough to change the overall result.