USA announces new export controls for Myanmar

Protests continue in Burma against the Feb 1 military coup that ousted the civilian government of Aung San Suu Kyi. Despite

Protests continue in Burma against the Feb 1 military coup that ousted the civilian government of Aung San Suu Kyi. Despite

The military detained Aung San Suu Kyi on February 1 and announced it was in full control of the country.

"We stand with the people of Myanmar in calling for an immediate end to military repression, the release of Aung San Suu Kyi and others, and the restoration of democracy".

The office of United Nations human rights chief Michelle Bachelet said in a statement on Thursday that at least 54 people have now been killed by security forces since the military seized power, but added that the actual death toll could be much higher.

The UN Security Council is due to discuss the situation on Friday in a closed meeting, say diplomats.

A spokesman for the military rulers did not answer telephone calls seeking comment.

"The answer was: "We are used to sanctions, and we survived", she told reporters in NY.

"We call on all countries to speak with one voice to condemn the brutal violence by the Burmese military against its own people", said US State Department Spokesperson Ned Price. "I lay down on the ground, they shot a lot", protester Kaung Pyae Sone Tun, 23, told Reuters.

The administration of President Joe Biden has already imposed sanctions such as asset freezes on 12 senior officials of Myanmar's military, including their top leader, and three related entities.

The United States has told China it expects it to play a constructive role, he said.

The European Union said the shootings of unarmed civilians and medical workers were clear breaches of worldwide law.

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"If both sides use violence, then we have a situation of a real war in Myanmar, which is in nobody's interest", the United Nations envoy said.

Two deaths each were reported in Salin, a town in Magwe region, and in Mandalay, the country's second-biggest city.

A 26-year-old man helping at barriers set up in the city to slow security forces died after being shot in the neck, medical officials told AFP. The soldiers loaded his body onto a truck and left the scene, according to the report.

"Our federation will be on road to fight the military regime together with the people", the All Burma Federation of Student Unions posted on social media late on Thursday.

However protesters, citizen journalists and some media groups have continued to send images out of Myanmar, and on Thursday the funeral of a 19-year-old woman killed in Mandalay was streamed live on Facebook. They took to the streets to demand Suu Kyi's release after charges were filed against her and fears grew that her detention would be extended. Reuters was unable to verify the video independently.

The military justified the coup by saying its complaints of voter fraud in the November 8 vote were ignored. "We talked also to constitutional experts, and they said it doesn't have to be one year".

Schraner Burgener said she warned Myanmar deputy military chief Soe Win that the military was likely to face strong measures from some countries and isolation in retaliation for the coup.

The junta justified its coup by making unfounded allegations that Suu Kyi's party rigged the election.

They also reject the junta's promise to hold new elections at an unspecified date.

"This action restricts the export and reexport of items subject to the EAR [Export Administration Regulations ] to the Burmese Ministry of Defense and the Burmese Ministry of Home Affairs, the entities responsible for the coup, and to two commercial entities owned and operated by the Ministry of Defense and that provide it revenue", the department said in a news release, using the former name for the country in holding with the U.S. government's refusal to recognize the legitimacy of the present government.

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