President Joe Biden condemned Myanmar’s military takeover on Monday but unlike other world, leaders did not call the incident a coup.
A senior State Department official told Forbes,” Recent events in Myanmar have the making of a coup, but the State Department is doing the required legal and factual analysis. We will await the outcome before making an assessment.”
Under Federal law, U.S. is required to sever most forms of military, economic, and development aid to countries where the military has takeover pr ousted the duly elected government in a coup.
Myanmar’s Military Takeover turned out to be U.S. President Joe Biden’s first major international crisis. How the new U.S. administration responds to the crisis will be an early test of Biden’s dual pledge to re-center human rights in U.S. foreign policy and work more closely with allies, in contrast to former President Donald Trump’s go-it-alone “America First” approach.
Biden could impose a new program of sanctions, cut aid, or target generals and companies they run to pressure for a return to democracy.
“The international community should come together in one voice to press the Burmese military to immediately relinquish the power they have sized, release the activist and officials they have detailed,” Biden said in a statement.
He further said, “The United States removed sanctions on Burma over the past decade based on the progress towards democracy. The reversal of the progress will nessaciate an immediate review of our sanction laws and authorities, followed by appropriate action”.
Biden called on to the military in Myanmar, which is also known as Burma, to revoke all the restrictions on the internet and telecommunications. He has also warned them to refrain from any violence against the civilians.
He said the U.S. was taking notes of those who are standing to support Myanmar in this difficult time.
“We will work with our partners throughout the region and the world to support the restoration of the democracy and rule of the law, as well as to hold accountable those responsible for overturning Burma’s democratic transition,” said Biden.
Suu Kyi’s NLD ( National League of Democracy) party won the election held on 8 Nov with 83% votes. While taking over the country on Monday Military said they are responding to election fraud by taking over what is called election fraud.
Biden’s Intensive Consultation
White House spokeswoman Jen Psaki said
Biden’s remark that the U.S. was taking notes of how other countries respond is directed “to all countries in the region”.
She denied to say anything on what other actions were under consideration aside from sanctions. But she told a regular news briefing Washington had had “intensive” conversations with allies.
U.S. Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell has had close past ties with Suu Kyi like a member of the Biden administration. He called the arrest horrifying and said Washington need to impose a cost on those behind the coup.
He further said,” The Biden administration must take a strong stand, and our partners and all democracies around the world should follow suit in condemning this authoritarian assault on democracy.”
Robert Menendez, the top Democrat in the Senate Foreign Relations Committee said, “Washington and other countries should impose strict economic sanctions, as well as other measures against Myanmar’s army and the military leadership if they did not free the elected leaders and remove themselves from the government.”
He also claimed that the Myanmar army was guilty of genocide against minority Rohingya Muslims and of a sustained campaign of violence against other minorities.
Myanmar’s coup is a significant blow for the Biden administration and its efforts to forge Asia Pacific policy to stand up against China.