Photo by teera.noisakran via Shutterstock

South Korea will no longer export military materials to Myanmar as violent and lethal crackdowns on protesters continue.

The South Korean government issued a statement on the Ministry of Foreign Affairs website:

“Despite repeated calls from the international community, including the Korean government, use of violence by the military and police forces of Myanmar has resulted in numerous casualties. In response, the Korean government has decided to undertake the following measures.” 

“First, the Korean government will suspend new exchanges and cooperation in the field of defense and security with Myanmar. Second, the Korean government will not permit export of military supplies to Myanmar, and will strictly control export of dual-use items… Third, the Korean government will review development assistance to Myanmar.”

The South Korean government assured that despite cutting off assistance to the Myanmar junta, they will “continue to provide support projects which are directly linked to the livelihoods of the people of Myanmar as well as humanitarian assistance.”

The government also “called for an immediate release of those detained including State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi, an end to violence against civilians and a peaceful resolution of the situation in adherence with a lawful and democratic process.”

Protests against the military coup have been unrelenting since Feb. 1, with police and military forces continuously using lethal force.

Several protesters have been killed. Several associates of detained State Counsellor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi have also been killed.

Even after repeated condemnation from the international community and several world organizations, including the UN, the military and police forces have not wavered. 

Most recently, Chinese factories in the western part of Yangon were set on fire.

The fires are widely believed to be the result of arson attacks, yet it remains unconfirmed as to who initially set the fire.

Some have claimed protesters set the fire due to alleged anti-China sentiment on the rise over the belief among many protesters that China is backing the military coup.

Others have expressed that it is a more likely scenario that the military or police forces used an underhanded tactic and set the fires intentionally to blame it on the protesters.

The military has used such tactics before, as there have been incidents of kids reportedly being coerced into setting fires in townships in Myanmar.

Written ByLinn Win

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