Singapore — Myanmar’s military staged a coup on Monday (Feb 1), detaining the country’s leader Aung San Suu Kyi and placing the nation under a state of emergency for a year.
The coup is the culmination of rising tensions between the military and the democratically-elected civilian government headed by Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy (NLD).
The military last week hinted that it could seize power after cries of election fraud in the recent national polls, which the NLD won by a landslide.
The coup has sent Myanmar down on a precarious path, where a prolonged military dictatorship seems inevitable. The coup has been condemned by many countries, including the United Kingdom, the United States, India and Australia.
The coup has also drawn the concern of Singapore, which like Myanmar, is a member of the Association of South-East Asian Nations (Asean).
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated that “Singapore expresses grave concern about the latest situation in Myanmar”.
It added: “We are monitoring the situation closely and hope all parties involved will exercise restraint, maintain dialogue, and work towards a positive and peaceful outcome.”
Singapore also hopes that the situation in Myanmar returns to normal as soon as possible.
The Government is concerned with the safety of Singaporeans in Myanmar and has urged its citizens to get in touch with the embassy in Myanmar, and e-register themselves with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for it to contact them if required.
Myanmar’s military chief, General Min Aung Hlaing, is in power now and only time will tell what plans he has for the country. For now, Ms Suu Kyi has urged the Myanmar people to protest and reject the coup.
Simran Hisaria is an overseas intern at The Independent SG. /TISG
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