Myanmar Situation Update (27 June -3 July 2022)

A junta court in Mandalay sentenced an elected lawmaker to three years in prison for incitement due to her alleged involvement in organizing anti-regime protests and encouraging government employees to join the civil disobedience movement. Win Mya Mya ran under the National League of Democracy (NLD) during the 2020 general election and won a lower house seat. NLD sources said in a news report that some 701 NLD members have been detained by the junta since the coup, including 98 lawmakers who won seats during the 2020 Myanmar General Elections.

The Myanmar military junta has intensified its crackdown on political opposition as their promised fresh elections in 2023 draw near. Junta court proceedings against opposition politicians have been expedited in recent months. Local legal networks in Mandalay, meanwhile, said that the junta arrested three more lawyers who are representing political detainees and at least 10 lawyers had been arrested since the coup with dozens more wanted by the junta. 

Junta-appointed Union Election Commission (UEC) chairman Thein Soe reaffirmed UEC’s plan to hold the elections under the proposed proportional representation (PR) system during his visits in townships in Yangon and Rakhine State in June.

Chinese foreign minister Wang Yi, during his first official visit to Myanmar since the military coup in February 2022, reaffirmed Beijing’s support to Naypyitaw in safeguarding the country’s legitimate interests, as well as its national dignity on international occasions. He urged the junta to hold the talks with political opponents and said that China expects all parties in Myanmar to “adhere to rational consultation” and “strive to achieve political reconciliation”.

Wang Yi chaired the 7th Mekong-Lancang Cooperation Foreign Ministers' Meeting with the junta-appointed foreign minister. Myanmar hosted the meeting in Bagan which was participated by representatives from Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos. 

Myanmar junta spokesman Zaw Min Tun said earlier that "there is nothing impossible in politics," and that the negotiations with Aung Suu Kyi are not impossible as several countries have urged the military junta to start dialogue with the ousted state counselor. 

A military expert, in an interview, said that the Myanmar junta is losing control over the country as local People Defense Forces (PDF), along with the ethnic armed groups, are ramping up their attacks on the Myanmar military.  

A Myanmar military fighter jet carrying out attacks on ethnic rebels was detected in Thai airspace along the Thai-Myanmar border on 30 June which triggered panic among residents of Tak province in Thailand. In a statement, Thai civil society groups said that Thailand's engagement with the Myanmar junta and the Thai prime minister’s dismissal of the airspace violation as "no big deal" will "embolden" the Myanmar military to "perpetrate more gross violations" and threaten Thai citizens at the border. 

As of 1 July 2022, the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners (AAPP) recorded that 2,053 people have been killed by the junta since the coup. There are 11,362 people currently under detention. There are 115 people who have been sentenced to death. 

Prepared by

Asian Network for Free Elections (ANFREL) 04 July 2022, 11:30 a.m. (Bangkok time)

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