The United States, Britain, Canada and Australia have designated members of Myanmar's military regime, including the head of the air force, for sanctions. File Photo by EPA-EFE/Stringer
Jan. 31 (UPI) -- The United States Treasury Department has designated individuals and entities linked to the military regime of Myanmar for sanctions. The action is being carried out in coordination with Britain, Australia and Canada.
The action comes two years after a military coup overthrew the government of the country formerly known as Burma.
"On February 1, 2021, Burma's military overthrew the democratically elected government and removed the civilian government leaders form power, including President Win Myint and State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi," reads a press release from the Treasury Department Tuesday.
"Over the past two years, the military has continued to use violence and oppression to deny the people of Burma the ability to choose their own leaders. Burma's military regime has used its military aircraft to conduct aerial bombings and other attacks against pro-democracy forces, killing and displacing countless civilians," the press release continues.
The Treasury Department has designated members of the military regime and their allies. The current head of the country's air force, Htun Aung, who took over the position from General Maung Maung Kyaw last year, has been designated.
Additionally, Hal Swe, a former lawmaker with ties to the military junta, was designated for providing training to militias accused of grave human rights violations. Swe also is accused of publishing propaganda against religious minorities.
Individuals and entities linked to Myanmar's energy export sector also have been designated. Myo Myint Oo, the union minister of energy, along with Aung Min and Than Min, the managing and deputy directors of the Myanmar Oil and Gas Enterprise, were designated by Tuesday's action.
"Two years after Burma's military forcibly overthrew the democratically elected government of Burma, the United States, along with partner nations like the United Kingdom, Canada, and Australia, continue to stand with the people of Burma as they seek freedom and democracy," said Brian E. Nelson, Treasury Department undersecretary for terrorism and financial intelligence.
Canadian officials also commented on the parallel sanctions their government has imposed in coordination with Australia, Britain and the United States.
"Over the last two years, the people of Myanmar have shown remarkable resilience in the face of unspeakable atrocities. We urge all countries to impose similar measures. We will pursue pressure on the regime to support the people of Myanmar in their path toward genuine and inclusive democracy," said Canadian Minister of Foreign Affairs Mélanie Joly.