Myanmar junta chief vows no talks with coup opponents - GulfToday

Myanmar junta chief vows no talks with coup opponents


Myanmar junta chief Min Aung Hlaing inspects officers during a parade in Naypyitaw on Sunday. AP

Gulf Today Report

Myanmar's junta chief on Sunday said the military would not negotiate with “terrorist” opposition forces, vowing to annihilate them during a speech on Armed Forces Day, as opponents of last year's coup vowed they would fight on.

Army chief Min Aung Hlaing said on Sunday that Myanmar's junta will "annihilate" coup opponents as the military staged a show of force on the anniversary of its bloodiest crackdown so far on democracy protests.


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The military celebrated with a parade of troops and weapons in the capital, Naypyitaw, for the second year since overthrowing the elected government of Nobel laureate Aung San Suu Kyi on Feb. 1, 2021.

Ousted Myanmar leader Suu Kyi attends a meeting. File photo

The Southeast Asian country has been in chaos since a putsch in February 2021, with more than 1,700 people killed in crackdowns on dissent, according to a local monitoring group.

Anti-coup "People's Defence Force" fighters clash regularly with junta troops, while fighting has also flared in border areas with more established ethnic rebel groups.

Anti-coup protesters came out on streets in Myanmar on Sunday morning carrying signs saying "uproot the fascist military."

Junta leader Hlaing in his speech rejected any talks with "terrorist" opposition. A five-point peace plan by the Association of Southeast Asian Nations calls for talks on all sides, but so far has seen little progress.

"I would like to say Tatmadaw will no longer take into account negotiation with the terrorist group and their supporters for killing innocent people ... and will annihilate them into an end," he said.

Gen. Min Aung Hlaing inspects officers during a parade in Naypyitaw, Myanmar, on Sunday. AP

The military will "no longer negotiate... and annihilate until the end" groups fighting to overturn its rule, he said ahead of the Armed Forces Day procession in army-built capital Naypyidaw.

Jets flew overhead trailing the yellow, red and green of the national flag, while state media showed women lining the streets leading to the parade ground to give flowers and place garlands on the marching soldiers.

Meanwhile, anti-coup protesters called on social media for a national "power strike" demonstration on Sunday evening.

The junta accuses opposition militants of killing civilians and security forces in its resistance campaign, while activists say the military has killed hundreds in crackdowns since the coup.

The shadow government of the ousted administration, the National Unity Government (NUG), said on Sunday that Myanmar people will rip out the military and its fascism root and stem.

Members of the Myanmar military take part in a parade on 77th Armed Forces Day in Naypyidaw. AFP

"Together with the souls of our lost heroes, we will fight to the bitter end," NUG spokesman Dr. Sasa said in a statement.

Myanmar has been plagued by violence since the military seized power, upending a decade of tentative democratic and economic reforms.

More than 1,700 people have been killed and almost 13,000 arrested, according to rights group Assistance Association for Political Prisoners (AAPP).

Military authorities have said the AAPP figures are exaggerated.

The United Nations last week said the army was committing war crimes and crimes against humanity.

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