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22. Burma/Myanmar (1948-present)

Crisis Phase (January 4, 1948-March 28, 1948):  Burma achieved its independence from Britain on January 4, 1948. Sao Shwe Thaik assumed the presidency on January 4, 1948, and appointed Thakin Nu of the Anti-Fascist People’s Freedom League (AFPFL) as prime minister. The Central Council of the Burmese Communist Party-White Flag (BCP-WF) headed by Thakin Than Tun and Thakin Thein Pe decided to “overthrow the government by force” on February 18, 1948. Thakin Soc, leader of the Communist Party of Burma-Red Flag (CPB-RFC) was arrested by government police in March 1948. The government ordered the arrest of BCP-WF leaders on March 25, 1948.

Conflict Phase (March 29, 1948-July 30, 1958): BCP-WF rebels launched a military offensive against government troops on March 29, 1948. Government troops and BCP-WF rebels clashed near Paukkongyi in Pegu district on April 2, 1948. BCP-WF rebels captured Kamase in Pegu district on April 7, 1948, but government troops recaptured Kamase on April 10, 1948. The People’s Volunteer Organization-White Band (PVO-WB) led by Bo Po Kun and Bo La Yaung began a rebellion against the government on July 29, 1948. PVO-WB rebels captured Thayetmyo and Prome on August 8-9, 1948, but government troops recaptured Thayetmyo on August 30, 1948. Government troops recaptured Prome on September 9, 1948. Government troops and BCP-WF rebels clashed near Minbu on August 18, 1948, resulting in the death of 30 rebels. President Sao Shwe Thaik declared martial law on August 20, 1948. Former Foreign Minister U Tin Tut was assassinated in Rangoon on September 18, 1948, and President Sao Shwe Thaik proclaimed a state-of-emergency on September 19, 1948. PVO-WB rebels captured Prome on February 1, 1949. BCP-WF rebels captured Pyinmana, Yamethin, and Myingyan on February 20-23, 1949. PVO-WB rebels captured Yenangyaung, Chauk, Magwe, and Minbu on February 23-25, 1949. BCP-WF rebels captured Henzada and Pakokku in March 1949. PVO-WB rebels captured Thayetmyo on March 17, 1949. BCP-WF rebels captured Tharrawaddy on April 9, 1949. Government troops recaptured Yamethin from BCP-WF rebels in May 1949. PVO-WB rebels captured Sandoway and Kyaukpyu on June 10, 1949, but government troops recaptured Yenangyaung and Chauk from PVO-WB rebels on June 10, 1949. India provided military assistance (weapons) in support of the government beginning in June 1949.  Government troops recaptured Myingyan from BCP-WF rebels on July 10, 1949, and recaptured Kyaukpyu from PVO-WB rebels on July 15, 1949.  Government troops recaptured Henzada and Tharrawaddy from BCP-WF rebels on August 27, 1949.  Government troops captured Pyinmana from BCP-WF rebels on March 29, 1950 and Pakokku from BCP-WF rebels on April 29, 1950.  Government troops recaptured Magwe and Minbu from PVO-WB rebels on April 8-15, 1950.  Government troops recaptured Prome from PVO-WB rebels on May 19, 1950. Government troops recaptured Thayetmyo and Sandoway from PVO-WB rebels on October 5-27, 1950.  The governments of Britain and India provided military assistance (10,000 small weapons each) to the government in 1950.  The U.S. government agreed to provide military assistance in support of the government on October 17, 1950.  Parliamentary elections were held between June 1951 and April 1952, and the Anti-Fascist People’s Freedom League (AFPFL) won 147 out of 250 seats in the Chamber of Deputies.  The People’s Democratic Front (PDF) won 13 seats in the Chamber of Deputies.  Ba U was elected president by the parliament on March 12, 1952. The Burmese government formally banned the BCP-WF and PVO-WB in October 1953. BCP-WF rebels attacked a train between Mandalay and Maymyo on November 20, 1953, resulting in the deaths of 15 civilians. BCP-WF rebels attacked a train near Mandalay on March 26, 1955, resulting in the deaths of 30 civilians. BCP-WF rebels attacked a train near Tavoy on August 15, 1955, resulting in the deaths of 37 civilians. Parliamentary elections were held on April 27, 1956, and the AFPFL won 173 out of 250 contested seats in the Chamber of Deputies. The National Unity Front (NUF) won 48 seats in the Chamber of Deputies. Prime Minister Thakin Nu resigned, and Ba Swe formed a government as prime minister on June 5, 1956. Thakin Nu (U Nu) formed a government as prime minister on March 1, 1957. U Win Maung was elected president by the parliament on March 11, 1957, and he was inaugurated as president on March 13, 1957. The PVO renounced the use of military force on July 30, 1958. Some 15,000 individuals were killed during the conflict.

Post-Conflict Phase (July 31, 1958-December 31, 1967): The PVO (renamed People’s Comrade Party) regained legal status on August 15, 1958. PVO rebels led by Bo Po Kun surrendered to government troops beginning on August 15, 1958. Prime Minister U Nu resigned on October 28, 1958, and General Ne Win formed a government as prime minister on October 29, 1958. The U.S. government provided economic assistance to the government beginning on July 6, 1959. Parliamentary elections were held on February 6, 1960, and the AFPFL faction (Union Party) headed by U Nu won 158 out of 250 seats in the Chamber of Deputies. The AFPFL faction headed by Ba Swe and Kyaw Nyein won 41 seats in the Chamber of Deputies. U Nu formed a government as prime minister on April 4, 1960. Prime Minister U Nu was deposed in a military coup led by General Ne Win on March 2, 1962. One individual was killed during the military coup. The 17-member Revolutionary Council took control of the government, and General Ne Win was appointed as head-of-state on March 8, 1962.  The governments of Britain, Egypt, India, and the U.S. provided diplomatic assistance (diplomatic recognition) to the government of General Ne Win. The government established the Burmese Socialist Program Party (BSPP) on July 4, 1962. Government troops fired on student demonstrators in Rangoon on July 7, 1962, resulting in the deaths of 17 individuals. Government and BCP representatives held negotiations in Rangoon beginning on July 12, 1963. The government banned opposition political parties on March 28, 1964. On June 29, 1967, the Chinese government suspended economic assistance to the government after anti-ethnic Chinese riots in Rangoon and elsewhere from June 22-29, 1967.  Government troops fired on demonstrators in Sittwe on August 13, 1967, resulting in the deaths of some 100 individuals. Some 200 individuals were killed during the crisis.

Conflict Phase (January 1, 1968-March 31, 1989): The Burmese Communist Party (BCP) rebelled against the Burmese government. BCP rebels commanded by Naw Seng captured Mong Ko in Shan State on January 1, 1968.  The Chinese government provided military assistance to BCP rebels from 1968 to 1979. General Bo Zeya, commander of BCP rebel troops, was killed by government troops on April 16, 1968. Thakin Than Tun, chairman of BCP, was assassinated in the Pegu Yoma on September 24, 1968. U Nu, who had been living in exile in London, called for the restoration of parliamentary democracy in Burma on August 29, 1969. BCP rebels captured Mong Pawand Panghsai-Kyuhkok on March 21-28, 1970. Government troops and BCP rebels clashed near Mong Yang and Mong Mah on December 7-8, 1973, resulting in the deaths of 60 rebels.  A new constitution was approved by 95 percent of the voters in a referendum held on December 15-31, 1973. General Ne Win became the president of the Socialist Republic of the Union of Burma on January 4, 1974, and the new constitution went into effect on March 2, 1974.  The new constitution established a one-party state with the Burma Socialist Programme Party (BSPP) as the sole legal political party.  Legislative elections were held between January 27 and February 10, 1974, and the BSPP won 451 out of 451 seats in the People’s Assembly.  Government troops fired on demonstrators in Rangoon on June 6, 1974, resulting in the deaths of some 100 individuals. The government proclaimed martial law on December 11, 1974, and nine individuals were killed during demonstrations in Rangoon on December 12, 1974. Thakin Zin, chairman of the BCP, was killed by government troops in the Pegu Yoma on March 15, 1975. The government suppressed the communist rebellion in central Burma on March 20, 1975, resulting in the deaths of 172 rebels and 135 government soldiers. The BCP central committee elected Thakin Ba Thein Tin as chairman on May 26, 1975. Government troops and communist rebels clashed in eastern Burma on March 22-28, 1976, resulting in the deaths of 96 rebels and 35 government soldiers. The government suppressed a military rebellion on July 20, 1976.  Legislative elections were held on January 1-15, 1978, and the Burma Socialist Programme Party (BSPP) won 464 out of 464 seats in the People’s Assembly.  Some 200,000 individuals fled to Bangladesh from February to June 1978 as a result of a military operation (Naga Min).  Some 10,000 of these refugees died between May and December 1978.  The Chinese government agreed to provide economic assistance to the government on July 12, 1979.  Government troops launched a military offensive (Min Yan Aung) against BCP rebels between November 19, 1979 and January 6, 1980. The government announced a 90-day general amnesty for BCP rebels on May 24, 1980.  Legislative elections were held on October 4-18, 1981, and the Burma Socialist Programme Party (BSPP) won 475 out of 475 seats in the People’s Assembly.  General San Yu was elected president by the People’s Assembly on November 9, 1981.  U Maung Maung Kha formed a government as prime minister on November 9, 1981. Government troops launched a military offensive (Min Yan Aung-II) against BCP rebels in December 1982 and January 1983. Government troops clashed with BCP rebels near Panglong in northeast Burma on April 6, 1983, resulting in the deaths of 83 rebels and 27 government soldiers.  Legislative elections were held on October 6-20, 1985, and the Burma Socialist Programme Party (BSPP) won 489 out of 489 seats in the People’s Assembly.  BCP rebels attacked government troops near the Hsi-Hsiwan mountains on November 16, 1986, and government troops counter-attacked on November 19, 1986. Government troops captured Mong Paw, Panghsai-Kyu Hkok, Khun Hai, and Man Hio from the BCP on January 3-13, 1987, resulting in the deaths of 591 rebels and 175 government soldiers. Some 6,000 Burmese fled as refugees to China in January 1987. Government troops and police suppressed riots in Rangoon on March 12-19, 1988, resulting in the deaths of some 100 individuals. Government police clashed with demonstrators in Rangoon on June 21-22, 1988, resulting in the deaths of six policemen and 100 demonstrators. General Ne Win resigned as chairman of the BSPP, and General Sein Lwin was appointed as chairman of the BSPP on July 23, 1988. The government imposed martial law in Rangoon on August 3, 1988. Government troops and demonstrators clashed in Rangoon on August 8-12, 1988, resulting in the deaths of some 3,000 individuals. General Sein Lwin resigned as chairman of the BSPP, and General Saw Maung was appointed as chairman of BSPP on August 12, 1988.  The governments of Japan and West Germany imposed economic sanctions (suspension of economic assistance) against the government on August 31, 1988. Government troops and demonstrators clashed in South Okkapala on September 5-6, 1988, resulting in the deaths of some 200 individuals. General Saw Maung seized control of the BSPP-controlled government on September 18, 1988, and established the State Law and Order Restoration Council (SLORC). Some 10,000 Burmese fled as refugees to Thailand. The National League for Democracy (NLD), headed by Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, was established on September 24, 1988. The U.S. government imposed economic sanctions (suspension of economic assistance) and military sanctions (suspension of weapons sales) against the government on September 23, 1988. The European Community (EC) imposed economic sanctions (suspension of economic assistance) against the government on September 28, 1988. BCP rebels killed 106 government soldiers near Kutkai on December 13, 1988. The BCP rebellion collapsed on March 31, 1989.  Some 15,000 individuals were killed during the conflict.

Post-Conflict Phase (April 1, 1989-March 30, 2011): Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, leader of the National League for Democracy (NLD), was placed under house arrest on July 19, 1989.  Legislative elections were held on May 27, 1990, and the NLD won 392 out of 485 seats in the People’s Assembly. The SLORC, which had won only ten seats in the parliamentary elections, nullified the results of the legislative elections. Government troops fired on demonstrators in Mandalay on August 8, 1990, resulting in the deaths of four individuals.  The Chinese government provided military assistance (weapons and ammunition) in support of the Myanmar government between August 10, 1990 and February 5, 1997. A government-in-exile, the National Coalition Government of the Union of Burma (NCGUB), was established on December 18, 1990.  The European Community (EC) imposed military sanctions (arms embargo) against the government beginning on July 29, 1991.  The United Nations Commission on Human Rights (UNCHR) sent a fact-finding mission to Burma on October 22-26, 1991. The United Nations (UN) General Assembly approved a resolution on December 17, 1991, which expressed concern about human rights abuses in Burma. The UNCHR condemned the SLORC on March 4, 1992. General Saw Maung resigned as chairman of the SLORC and prime minister on April 23, 1992, and General Than Shwe was appointed as chairman of the SLORC and prime minister.  The U.S. government imposed military sanctions (arms embargo) against the government on June 16, 1993.  The UN General Assembly condemned the Burmese government for human rights abuses on December 3, 1993.  Daw Aung San Suu Kyi was released from house arrest on July 10, 1995.  The Japanese government lifted economic sanctions against the government in 1995. The European Union (EU) appealed for peaceful negotiations on May 7, 1996. The SLORC ordered the arrest some 260 NLD members on May 21-25, 1996, including several members-elect of the parliament. On May 24, 1996, Amnesty International (AI) condemned the SLORC for the arrests of NLD members. Several pro-democracy activists were convicted and sentenced to prison terms on August 31, 1996. The SLORC arrested and detained some 110 pro-democracy activists in September 1996. On September 27, 1996, Amnesty International (AI) condemned the SLORC for the arrest of pro-democracy activists.  European Union (EU) foreign ministers confirmed military sanctions (arms embargo) and imposed economic sanctions (suspension of economic assistance) against Burma on October 28, 1996.  At least three individuals were killed in inter-religious violence (Buddhist and Muslim) in Mandalay on March 16, 1997.  The government declared a state-of-emergency on May 20, 1997.  The U.S. government imposed economic sanctions (investment ban) against the government on May 21, 1997.  On May 21, 1997, Amnesty International (AI) condemned the SLORC for the recent arrests of some 50 members of the NLD. The SLORC was replaced by the State Peace and Development Council (SPDC) on November 15, 1997.  The European Union (EU) condemned the SPDC for the detention of some 100 government opponents on September 11, 1998.  UN Assistant Secretary-General Alvaro de Soto of Peru was appointed as Special Envoy of the UN Secretary-General for Burma/Myanmar, and he visited the country on four occasions between May 7, 1997 and October 18, 1999.  Razali Ismail of Malaysia served as UN Special Envoy to Burma from April 4, 2000 to January 3, 2006.  The Henry Dunant Centre for Humanitarian Dialogue (HDCHD) facilitated negotiations between government officials and opposition groups beginning in August 2000.  On September 22, 2000, U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright condemned the government of Myanmar for preventing Aung San Suu Kyi from traveling from Rangoon to Mandalay.  Some 200 Muslims were killed in anti-Muslim violence in Taungoo on May 15-16, 2001.  Daw Aung San Suu Kyi was detained by the government on September 22, 2000, but she was released on May 6, 2002.  The military junta released 14 political dissidents from prison on August 9, 2002.  Some 50 individuals were killed in anti-NLD violence in Depayin on May 30, 2003.  Saw Aung San Suu Kyi was arrested and imprisoned on May 31, 2003, and she was placed under house arrest in September 2003.  Prime Minister Khin Nyunt was replaced by Lt. General Soe Win on October 20, 2004.  On May 7, 2005, 21 individuals were killed in a bombing in Rangoon.  Former Prime Minister Khin Nyunt was convicted of corruption and bribery, and he was sentenced to 44 years in prison on July 22, 2005.  On June 29, 2007, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) condemned the military government of Myanmar for major human rights abuses.  On August 31, 2007, U.S. President George W. Bush condemned the military government of Myanmar for the recent arrest of political dissidents.  Some 30 individuals were killed during demonstrations in Rangoon on September 26-29, 2007.  Ibrahim Gambari of Nigeria served as UN Special Envoy to Myanmar from September 29, 2007 to June 27, 2009.  Prime Minister Soe Win died on October 12, 2007, and General Thein Sein was appointed as prime minister on October 24, 2007.   The Australian government imposed economic sanctions (travel ban and financial restrictions) against leaders of the Myanmar government in October 2007.  The Canadian government imposed economic sanctions (trade embargo and assets freeze) against Myanmar in November 2007.  The European Union (EU) appointed Piero Fassino of Italy as EU Special Envoy to Myanmar on November 6, 2007.  U.S. President George W. Bush imposed additional economic sanctions (assets freeze) against Myanmar on May 1, 2008.  A new constitution was approved by 94 percent of voters in a referendum held on May 10, 2008.  Saw Aung San Suu Kyi was charged with violating the conditions of her detention under house arrest, and she was put on trial for the  charges beginning on May 18, 2008.  On May 19, 2008, the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) condemned the government of Myanmar for the trial of Saw Aung San Suu Kyi.  At least nine individuals were killed in three explosions in Rangoon on April 15, 2010.  Legislative elections were held on November 7, 2010, and the Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP) headed by Prime Minister Thein Sein won 259 out of 440 seats in the House of Representatives (Pyithu Hluttaw).  The Shan Nationalities Democratic Party (SNDP) won 18 seats in the House of Representatives.  The National League for Democracy (NLD) boycotted the legislative elections.  Prime Minister Thein Sein was elected president by the Myanmar electoral college on February 4, 2011.  General Than Shwe resigned as Chairman of the SPDC, and Prime Minister Thein Sein was sworn in as president on March 30, 2011.

Post-Crisis Phase (March 31, 2011-January 31, 2021):  The government of Myanmar released some 300 political dissidents from prison on October 12, 2011.  The government of Myanmar released some 230 political dissidents from prison on January 13, 2012.  European Union (EU) foreign ministers agreed to suspend economic sanctions (visa ban) against government leaders in Myanmar on January 23, 2012.  Elections to fill 37 vacant seats in the House of Representatives were held on April 1, 2012, and the National League for Democracy (NLD) won 37 out of 37 contested seats.  The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) sent 23 observers led by Chheang Vun of Cambodia to monitor the legislative elections from March 27 to April 2, 2012.  Other countries sent observers to monitor the legislative elections, including Australia (two observers), Canada (two observers), and the U.S. (two observers).  On April 17, 2012, the U.S. government suspended economic sanctions (financial transactions ban) against the government of Myanmar for NGO humanitarian and development projects.  The Japanese government agreed to provide economic assistance ($3.7 billion in debt relief) to Myanmar on April 21, 2012.  The European Union (EU) agreed to suspend most economic sanctions (assets freeze and travel ban) against Myanmar on April 23, 2012.  The Canadian government suspended most economic sanctions against Myanmar on April 24, 2012.  The U.S. government suspended economic sanctions (ban on investment) against Myanmar on May 17, 2012.  The Australian government lifted economic sanctions (financial restrictions and travel ban) against Myanmar on June 7, 2012.  Buddhists and Muslims clashed in the northern Rakhine state between June and October 2012, resulting in the deaths of at least 168 individuals and the displacement of some 100,000 individuals.  The government declared a state of emergency in the Rakhine state on June 10, 2012.  Buddhists and Muslims clashed in the town of Meiktila on March 20-22, 2013, resulting in the deaths of at least 40 individuals.  The EU lifted economic sanctions against the Myanmar government on April 22, 2013.  Two individuals were killed during inter-religious violence in the town of Okkan on April 30, 2013.  The U.S. government lifted economic sanctions (visa restrictions) against Myanmar on May 2, 2013.  One individual was killed in inter-religious violence in the northern city of Lashio on May 29, 2013.  The British government offered “military cooperation” to the government of Myanmar on July 15, 2013.  The government of Myanmar announced the release of another 73 political dissidents from prison on July 23, 2013.  Buddhists and Muslims clashed in the villages of Thabyachaing and Linthi between September 29 and October 2, 2013, resulting in the deaths of seven Muslims and two Buddhists.  The government of Myanmar announced the release of another 69 political dissidents from prison on November 15, 2013.  In January 2014, the United Nations announced that more than 40 Rohingya civilians were killed in the Rakhine state following an incident involving the death of a Rakhine police officer. In June 2014 two deaths and five casualties were reported after an incident on social media.  On July 1, 2014, 300 Buddhists attacked Muslim homes and businesses in Mandalay, resulting in two civilian deaths.  In response to the attacks, the Myanmar government initiated a curfew and banned access to Facebook from July 3-4, 2014.  More than 90 political parties and approximately 6,300 candidates participated in the general election campaign in Myanmar beginning on September 8, 2014.  On September 22, 2014, the Myanmar government announced that it would grant citizenship to 209 Muslim displaced persons in Rakhine state.  The Myanmar government announced new voter regulations in February 2015, revoking voter eligibility status of Myanmar’s minorities.  On February 10, 2015, Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson, Hua Chunying, stated that the Chinese government provided assistance to Myanmar refugees.  On May 20, 2015, it was reported that Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand had agreed to give migrants and refugees temporary shelter.  On July 8, 2015, the EU issued a statement condemning the Buddhist Women’s Special Marriage bill.  The Myanmar government approved the Religious Conversion Bill and the Monogamy Bill on August 21, 2015, all of which were promoted by the Association for Protection of Race and Religion (Ma Ba Tha).  The Union Election Commission (UEC) announced new media restrictions on August 29, 2015.  Due to more violent outbreaks, the UEC cancelled voting procedures in 600 villages on October 13, 2015.  On October 13-14, 2015, three activists were arrested by government police for their Facebook posts.  On October 27, 2015, the UEC postponed elections in two townships of Shan State in response to attacks.  Legislative elections were held on November 8, 2015, and the NLD won a combined 390 out of 664 seats in the bicameral Assembly of the Union, which consists of the lower House of Representatives (440 seats) and the upper House of Nationalities (224 seats).  The Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP) won a combined 41 seats in the Assembly of the Union.  Htin Kyaw was elected by the Assembly of the Union as the President of Myanmar on March 15, 2016.  Aung San Suu Kyi was sworn in as State Counsellor of Myanmar (head of government) on April 6, 2016.  On August 25, 2017, Rohingya militants known as the Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (ARSA) attacked more than 30 government police stations in Rakhine state.  Government troops responded with attacks against Rohingya villages in Rakhine state.  On September 2, 2017, government soldiers executed ten Rohingya men near the village of Inn Din in Rakhine state.  According to Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF), nearly 7,000 Rohingya, including 730 children, were killed in violence by the end of September 2017.  More than 700,000 Rohingya refugees fled to Bangladesh in 2017.  Rohingya refugees have also fled to India, Indonesia, Malaysia, and Thailand.  On September 12, 2018, the report of a UN fact-finding mission established by the UN Human Rights Council (HRC) accused the Myanmar government of engaging in mass killings and rapes with “genocidal intent”.  The three-member UN fact-funding mission consisted of Marzuki Darusman (Indonesia-chair), and Radhika Coomaraswamy (Sri Lanka), and Christopher Sidoti (Australia).  On November 11, 2019, The Gambia filed a case against the Myanmar government at the International Court of Justice (ICJ) in The Hague, Netherlands, alleging that the Myanmar government had committed genocide against Rohingya Muslims.  The following month, State Counsellor of Myanmar, Aung San Suu Kyi, denied the allegations, stating that Myanmar was “dealing with an internal armed conflict, started by coordinated and comprehensive attacks” by Rohingya militants.  She also stated that if “war crimes have been committed by members of Myanmar’s defense services, they will be prosecuted through our military justice system, in accordance with Myanmar’s constitution.”  On December 10, 2019, the U.S. government imposed economic sanctions (assets freeze) against four Myanmar military leaders, including the commander-in-chief, for alleged human rights abuses against Rohingya Muslims.  On September 3, 2020, the governments of Canada and the Netherlands joined The Gambia’s case against the Myanmar government at the ICJ.  Legislative elections were held on November 8, 2020, and the NLD won 396 out of 664 seats in the bicameral Assembly of the Union.  The USDP won 33 seats in the Assembly of the Union.  The Asian Network for Free Elections (ANFREL), Carter Center (CC), EU, and Japanese government sent a total of 61 observers to monitor the legislative elections.  The ANFREL delegation, which consisted of 13 long-term observers and 11 short-term observers, was deployed in 13 out of 14 states and regions in Myanmar.

Crisis Phase (February 1, 2021-present):  The government of President Win Myint and State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi were overthrown in a military coup on February 1, 2021. Prime Minister Boris Johnson of the UK condemned the military coup on February 1, 2021.  A military government headed by General Min Aung Hlaing, commander in chief of Myanmar military forces, took control of the government on February 2, 2021.  The military government declared a state of emergency on February 2, 2021.  The EU and several countries, including Australia, Britain, Canada, France, Germany, Japan, Nepal, New Zealand, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Turkey, and the U.S., condemned the military coup.  On February 4, 2021, U.S. President Joe Biden stated that the “Burmese military should relinquish power they have seized and release the advocates and activists and officials they have detained, lift the restrictions on telecommunications and refrain from violence.”  Thousands of individuals protested in the streets against the military government in Yangon and other locations beginning on February 5, 2021.  The New Zealand government imposed economic sanctions (travel ban) against members of the Myanmar military on February 9, 2021.  The U.S. government imposed economic sanctions (assets freeze) against members of the Myanmar military and other corporate entities, including the Myanmar Economic Corporation (MEC) and Myanmar Economic Holdings Ltd. (MEHL), beginning on February 10, 2021.  The UK government imposed economic sanctions (assets freeze and travel ban) against members of the Myanmar military beginning on February 18, 2021.  At least 18 protesters were killed by government security forces in Yangon, Mandalay, and other locations on February 28, 2021.  On March 2, 2021, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong of Singapore condemned the use of violence by Myanmar’s security forces against unarmed civilians.  At least 38 protesters were killed by government security forces throughout the country on March 3, 2021.  On March 7, 2021, the Australian government imposed new military sanctions (suspension of defense cooperation and defense training program) against the military government.  In a presidential statement released on March 10, 2021, the UN Security Council strongly condemned the violence against protesters in Myanmar and the release of government leaders including State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi and President Win Myint who have been detained by the military government since the military coup.  More than 50 protesters were killed by government security forces in Yangon, Mandalay, and other locations on March 14, 2021.  The military government imposed martial law in parts of Yangon on March 14, 2021.  On March 17, 2021, Pope Francis appealed for an end to violence and peaceful dialogue in Myanmar.  The EU imposed economic sanctions (assets freeze and travel ban) against members of the Myanmar military beginning on March 22, 2021.  On March 24, 2021, the military government released more than 600 individuals who had been detained for participating in protests against the military coup.  More than 110 individuals, including at least seven children, were killed in clashes between protestors and government security forces in Yangon, Mandalay, and other locations on March 27, 2021.  The governments of the U.S. and UK, as well as the EU, condemned the military government for the violence.  On March 28, 2021, the defense ministers of 12 countries, including the Australia, New Zealand, Canada, U.S., UK, Germany, Denmark, Greece, Italy, Netherlands, Japan, and South Korea, condemned the Myanmar military for the violence.

[Sources: Al Jazeera, November 11, 2019, December 11, 2019, December 22, 2019, September 3, 2020, October 28, 2020, November 8, 2020, November 10, 2020, November 13, 2020, January 31, 2021, February 1, 2021, February 2, 2021, February 4, 2021, February 10, 2021, February 11, 2021, February 12, 2021, February 27, 2021, March 4, 2021, March 6, 2021, March 11, 2021, March 13, 2021, March 16, 2021, March 20, 2021, March 25, 2021, March 27, 2021, March 28, 2021; Amnesty International (AI) press release, May 24, 1996, September 27, 1996, May 21, 1996; Arnold et al., 1991, 223-229; Associated Press (AP), September 22, 2000, February 10, 2021, March 7, 2021, March 10, 2021, March 15, 2021, March 16, 2021, March 17, 2021, March 22, 2021, March 24, 2021, March 25, 2021, March 26, 2021, March 27, 2021; Banks and Muller, 1998, 636-641; Beigbeder, 1994, 106-108; British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC), September 22, 2000, October 9, 2000, May 6, 2002, August 9, 2002, March 2, 2004, October 7, 2004, October 20, 2004, July 22, 2005, January 8, 2006, May 18, 2007, June 29, 2007, August 31, 2007, September 27, 2007, October 5, 2007, October 23, 2007, May 1, 2008, May 14, 2009, May 19, 2009, June 27, 2009, March 29, 2010, April 15, 2010, November 9, 2010, February 4, 2011, January 23, 2012, March 20, 2012, April 1, 2012, April 21, 2012, April 23, 2012, September 18, 2012, April 4, 2013, May 3, 2013, July 15, 2013, July 23, 2013, August 25, 2013, August 29, 2013, October 3, 2013, November 15, 2013, January 23, 2020, February 1, 2021, February 2, 2021, February 5, 2021, February 10, 2021, February 18, 2021, February 28, 2021, March 2, 2021, March 3, 2021, March 14, 2021, March 26, 2021, March 27, 2021; Brogan, 1992, 145-156; Butterworth, 1976, 1319-1320; Cady 1958; Clodfelter, 1992, 1125-1126; Degenhardt, 1988, 30-36; European Union (EU) press release, May 7, 1996, September 11, 1998; Facts on File, March 14-20, 1952, May 2-8, 1956, May 23-29, 1956; March 1-7, 1962, July 5-11, 1962, April 2-8, 1964, April 17, 1976; Far Eastern Economic Review (FEER), June 7, 1990, 10-11, June 14, 1990, 10-11; Jessup, 1998, 96; Keesing’s Record of World Events, February 28-March 6, 1948, May 8-15, 1948, October 2-9, 1948, March 29-April 5, 1952, April 13-20, 1957, November 1-8, 1958, July 18-25, 1959, June 11-18, 1960, March 1-7, 1962; January 21-27, 1974, July 21-27, 1975, October 15, 1976, December 18, 1981, March 1987, October 1988, May 1990, November 1997; Kyodo News Service (KNS), October 27, 1998, October 18, 1999; Langer, 1972, 1319-1320; New York Times (NYT), January 9, 1989, September 18, 2017; Reuters, November 9, 2010, February 4, 2011, October 11, 2011, January 13, 2012, January 23, 2012, February 21, 2012, April 2, 2012, April 17, 2012, April 23, 2012, April 24, 2012, May 17, 2012, June 4, 2012, June 7, 2012, April 22, 2013, May 2, 2013, May 29, 2013, December 10, 2019; Survey of International Affairs (SIA), 1947-1948, 439-457; Tinker 1967; Trager 1966; UN Secretary-General press release, April 4, 2000; Voice of America (VOA), March 21, 2012; Washington Post, November 12, 2019, December 11, 2019.]

 

Selected Bibliography

Cady, John F. 1958. A History of Modern Burma. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press.

Htin Aung, Maung. 1967. A History of Burma. New York and London: Colombia University Press.

Maung, Maung. 1969. Burma and General Ne Win. New York: Asia Publishing House.

Maung, Maung. 1990. Burmese Nationalist Movements, 1940-1948. Honolulu, Hawaii: University of Hawaii Press.

Tinker, Hugh. 1967. The Union of Burma: A Study of the First Years of Independence. London, New York, and Toronto:
Oxford University Press.

Trager, Frank N. 1966. Burma From Kingdom to Republic: A Historical and Political Analysis. New York: Praeger
Publishers.