STATEMENT OF SUPPORT AND SOLIDARITY FOR THE PEOPLE OF MYANMAR
STAND Canada has been following the ongoing crisis occurring in Myanmar, located in South East Asia. Myanmar has a population of approximately 54 million people, composed of many ethnic and religious groups in the country, including Rohingya Muslims. In August 2017, a severe suppression and repression by Myanmar’s military, the Tatmadaw, of Rohingya Muslims, sent hundreds of thousands fleeing across the border into Bangladesh. A report published by UN investigators in August 2018 accused Myanmar’s military of carrying out mass killings and sexual assaults with “genocidal intent” and despite continuous external intervention from the UN and other Courts, the situation remained unchanged, due to the lack of accountability from Myanmar’s military and political leaders and their failure to fully investigate allegations or criminalise genocide.
On February 1st, 2021, the military of Myanmar seized control, put military commander-in-chief Min Aung in power, and declared a year-long state of emergency following a general election which Ms. Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy (NLD) party won. This seizure has led to protests taking place across Myanmar denouncing this month’s military takeover and the removal of the civilian government.
It has been reported that at least 700 people have been detained since the coup, including high-profile leaders of the civilian government. Some are being kept under house arrest, including Elected leader Aung San Suu Kyi and members of her party, with no outside contact and in most cases their whereabouts are unknown. Previous reports state that around five protesters have died while many human rights defenders have been threatened and gone into hiding. The lack of official charges or acknowledgement of detention, the illegal seizure of the State and the continued silencing of the people of Myanmar has deeply concerned international leaders, STAND Canada, included.
STAND Canada (formerly STAND (Students Taking Action Now: Darfur)) advocates to make preventing and ending genocide a cornerstone of Canadian domestic and foreign policy. Since it was founded in 2005, STAND has become the leading organization in Canada for youth-led anti-genocide activism.
STAND Canada and its partners denounce the actions of the Myanmar Military against its civilians, activists, media and political leaders.