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Myanmar: Ambassador to UK protests diplomatic coup in London

Kyaw Zwar Minn split with the military regime after espousing support for the ousted democractically elected leader Aung San Suu Kyi

Kyaw Zwar Minn split with the military regime after espousing support for the ousted democractically elected leader Aung San Suu Kyi

The estranged Myanmar ambassador to the UK called on the British government to not recognize the military regime, in a statement released on Thursday. This came a day after a military attache locked him out of the embassy in London.

Kyaw Zwar Minn issued his statement on Sky News via a spokesperson, in front of the embassy in London. He again called for the release of Aung San Suu Kyi and for "the result of the 2020 election to be respected."

He said he would work with "anyone who will bring democratic change in Myanmar."

Kyaw Zwar Minn said that he stopped following instructions from the military regime after it called for his removal in March.

He said he had "full faith" that the UK would refuse to recognize the military government or its chosen ambassador. A statement from the UK foreign office appeared to contradict this hope.

The ambassador also told reporters that he had slept in his car outside the embassy overnight.

The UK gives a mixed reaction

British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab responded to the occupation of the embassy by denouncing the "bullying actions" of the junta, while at the same time honoring Kyaw Zwar Minn.

"The UK continues to call for an end to the coup and the appalling violence, and a swift restoration of democracy," he added in a tweet.

A spokesperson from the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office on Thursday said that the government had received formal notification from the government in Myanmar that Kyaw Zwar Minn had been removed from his position.

The FCO said it would have to abide by the decision, explaining that it maintains relations with states, not with individual governments.

Kyaw Zwar Minn broke with the military following the February coup, calling for the release of Aung San Suu Kyi. He was recalled by the junta in March.

Clashes continue in Myanmar

The junta has been struggling to quell ongoing protests since it ousted democratically elected leader Aung San Suu Kyi.

The military's response has become increasingly brutal and violent, with almost 600 people killed to date, according to the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners, and nearly 2,900 people detained.

Several other diplomatic figures have broken ranks with the military regime in Myanmar, including the country's ambassador to the United Nations.

Despite foreign pressure ramping up, Russia and China have blocked the UN from calling for sanctions against the regime.

ab/aw (AFP, EFE)


Updated : 2021-04-12 20:25 GMT+08:00