Washington, D.C. – Today, House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Gregory W. Meeks (D-NY) and Representatives Ami Bera, M.D. (D-CA) and Steve Chabot (R-OH), Chairman and Ranking Member of the Subcommittee on Asia, the Pacific, Central Asia, and Nonproliferation, released the following joint statement on the one-year anniversary of the Burma coup:
“Today marks the one-year anniversary of the Burmese military’s coup d’état that reversed the country’s nascent, hard-fought democratic transition, and plunged the country into violence and a deepening humanitarian crisis.
“Since February 1, 2021, the military has killed over 1,500 people—including over 100 children—and unjustly detained more than 10,700 elected officials, journalists, activists, civil society leaders, and others. According to the UN Refugee Agency, the military’s violence has also resulted in roughly 406,000 internally displaced persons.
“We commend and have the utmost respect for the people of Burma, who have bravely stood against the illegitimate coup, and resisted attacks on their democracy and fundamental rights. We also applaud the steps the Biden Administration has taken thus far to impose sanctions on military officials and its affiliated conglomerates to hold the perpetrators for the coup and ensuing human rights atrocities to account.
“With the military refusing to accede to the demands of the Burmese people and the international community, the United States must do more. We must continue to ensure that life-saving assistance can get to the Burmese people and to work with allies and partners to pressure the military to cease its violence, come to the negotiating table, and chart a path toward democracy.
“The U.S. Congress has consistently demonstrated bipartisan, bicameral support for the people of Burma in their struggle for freedom. As we come to the one-year anniversary of the coup, we strongly urge our fellow colleagues in the House and Senate to continue that tradition and pass the BURMA Act.”