New sanctions significant – Aviation fuel must be next.
Burma Campaign UK today welcomed a new round of EU sanctions against the Burmese military and its allies, agreed by EU Foreign Ministers today.
The decision today by the EU Foreign Affairs Council has been published in the official journal of the EU here:
The new round is particularly significant for two reasons:
Myanmar Oil and Gas Enterprise (MOGE) has been sanctioned for the first time. During the previous military dictatorship, the EU never imposed sanctions on the gas sector.
It is the first time the EU has imposed sanctions on the Burmese military that were not a direct response to a new atrocity by the Burmese military. This is precedent setting. It represents an understanding that the EU needs to continue to identify and sanction sources of revenue and arms to the military. The UK, USA and Canada have already been pursuing this policy.
“These sanctions are significant and welcome,” said Anna Roberts, Executive Director of Burma Campaign UK. “By targeting the oil and gas sector the EU has leapfrogged the USA, targeting one of the main sources of revenue for the military. The USA, which has broader sanctions powers than the EU, must now follow.”
The sanctions announced by the EU include the state owned and now military controlled Myanmar Oil and Gas Enterprise (MOGE), the state owned and now military controlled No1 Mining Enterprise, crony companies Htoo Group and IGE which provide financial and other support to the military, members of the Burmese military. State Administrative Council, and military appointed members of the Union Election Commission.
EU sanctions on MOGE are a huge campaign success for all the civil society organisations in and from Burma and around the world which have campaigned so hard for gas revenue sanctions.
“There is still much more that the EU can do to ensure European companies are not helping to fund and arm the Burmese military,” said Anna Roberts. “The European Union must also sanction aviation fuel. Airstrikes by Burmese military jets and helicopters have forced hundreds of thousands of people from their home and created a humanitarian crisis.”