The United Nations (UN) Secretary-General calls for unified regional and international action to prevent Myanmar’s crisis from escalating into a large-scale conflict and multi-faceted “catastrophe” in Southeast Asia and beyond.
In a report to the United Nations General Assembly circulated Wednesday, Secretary-General Antonio Guterres warned that the window of opportunity to prevent the army from entrenching its rule is closing. Regional and international countries must assist Myanmar in returning to democratic reform.
“The risk of a large-scale armed conflict requires a collective approach to prevent a multi-dimensional catastrophe in the heart of Southeast Asia and beyond,” the secretary-general said.
“Grave humanitarian implications, including rapidly deteriorating food security, an increase in mass displacements, and a weakened public health system compounded by a new wave of COVID-19 infections require a coordinated approach in complementarity with regional actors,” Guterres added.
When the Myanmar army deposed Aung San Suu Kyi’s government on February 1, it alleged rampant fraud marred her party’s November general election by a landslide.
The coup d’etat provoked large street protests. According to UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet and the right groups, the pushback has left more than 1,100 people dead.
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