Myanmar military declares one-year state of emergency, Suu Kyi detained
State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi Suu Kyi, the nation’s top leader, and the country’s president, Win Myint, were both detained in the pre-dawn hours of Monday.
Published: 01st February 2021 08:19 AM | Last Updated: 01st February 2021 09:17 AM | A+A A-
NAYPYITAW: Myanmar's military declared a one-year state of emergency on Monday and appointed a general as acting president, after arresting civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi and other senior officials.
An announcement on military-owned Myawaddy TV said the move was needed to preserve the "stability" of the state, accusing the country's election commission of failing to address "huge irregularities" in the November election.
The announcement follows days of concern about the threat of a military coup and comes as the country's new Parliament session was to begin.
The Irrawaddy, an established online news service, reported that State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi Suu Kyi, the nation’s top leader, and the country’s president, Win Myint, were both detained in the pre-dawn hours of Monday. The news service cited Myo Nyunt, a spokesman for Suu Kyi’s ruling National League for Democracy party.
Its report said that the party’s Central Executive Committee members, lawmakers and regional Cabinet members had also been taken into custody.
"The UEC (election commission) failed to solve huge voter lists irregularities in the multiparty general election which was held on November 8th 2020," said the statement signed by the new acting president Myint Swe, a former general who had been vice-president.
The statement accused "other party organisations" of "harming the stability of the state".
"As the situation must be resolved according to the law, a state of emergency is declared."
The statement said responsibility for "legislation, administration and judiciary" had been handed over to military commander-in-chief Min Aung Hlaing.
Phone and internet access to Naypyitaw was lost and Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy party could not be reached.
Myanmar lawmakers were to gather Monday in the capital Naypyitaw for the first session of Parliament since last year’s election, with tension lingering over recent comments by the military that were widely seen as threatening a coup.
The U.S., Australia and others were concerned by the reports and urged Myanmar's military to respect the rule of law.
(With AP inputs)