The European Union on Monday condemned “the continuing grave human rights violations” in Myanmar and reiterated its call for an immediate cessation of all hostilities. 

“Since the military coup, the situation has continuously and gravely deteriorated,” EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell wrote in a statement marking the first anniversary of the junta’s takeover in Myanmar.

He expressed deep concern over the escalation of violence that has evolved “towards a protracted conflict with regional implications.”

He condemned “in the strongest terms the continuing grave human rights violations” and called for the accountability of those responsible for crimes such as torture, sexual violence, the persecution of civil society and attacks on the civilian population, including ethnic and religious minorities.

Borrell also called for “an immediate cessation of all hostilities and an end to the disproportionate use of force and the state of emergency.”

According to the EU’s estimations, more than 1,500 people have been killed, over 8,600 detained and 80 people sentenced to death over the past year.

In addition, 400,000 had to flee their homes and find shelter in the country as internally displaced since the military takeover while almost one million refugees live in neighboring countries.

On Feb. 1, 2021, Myanmar’s military junta seized power after allegations of fraud in the Nov. 8, 2020 general elections and political tensions in the country.

The army arrested leaders and officials of the ruling National League for Democracy party, including de facto leader and State Counselor Aung San Suu Kyi, and declared a one-year state of emergency.

On Dec. 6, a military court in Naypyidaw, the country’s administrative capital, sentenced her to four years in prison for violating coronavirus restrictions and incitement, as well as other former leaders of the country.​​​​​​​

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