Burmese junta restricts contact between political parties and foreign organizations

Burma’s junta on Friday decided to limit political parties’ ability to meet with international organizations ahead of next year’s elections. The 92 authorized political parties will have to request authorization from the Electoral Commission if they wish to meet organizations or individuals from abroad. “Political parties must respect the law. If they don’t, the permission given to their party will be removedsaid the Electoral Commission, accusing foreign embassies and nongovernmental organizations of interference in the 2020 elections.

The South Asian nation has been in turmoil and its economy has been in tatters since the February 2021 coup that toppled the government of Aung San Suu Kyi. The junta annulled the results of the November 2020 legislative elections, won overwhelmingly by Aung San Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy (NLD), last year on suspicion of fraud, although international observers estimated that the vote went well.

Political parties protest

Burmese political parties protested against this new decree. For Soe Thura Tun, former deputy of the NLD, this decision is undemocratic and does not respect the right to freedom of association. “Hindering (political parties) is not properhe told AFP on Saturday.

Ko Ko Gyi, president of the People’s Party, considers this announcement unprecedented and considers that it does not bode well for the next election to be a real democratic exercise. “We believe that their action will cause significant damage to the confidence that the people and the international community have in the upcoming election and the democratic system.“, he told AFP on Saturday.

Last week, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken called on the international community not to support the project of “simulacrumcampaign for next year’s elections. “They can be neither free nor just under present conditions.“, insisted the head of diplomacy of the United States from Phnom Penh where he met representatives of Asean.

Source link -94