Media Release from The Karen Peace Support Network
The Karen Peace Support Network (KPSN), welcomes the report of the United Nations Fact Finding Mission on Myanmar, on the Myanmar military’s economic interests, published on 5th August 2019.
The Fact Finding Mission was established to look into who is responsible for violations of international law in Rakhine, Shan and Kachin States, and to make recommendations to ensure justice and accountability.
It found that the Myanmar military has committed war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide.
The Fact-Finding Mission is recommending targeted sanctions on military-owned companies as part of efforts towards ensuring accountability. It stated that revenue from these companies helps the Myanmar military fund its military operations, in large part by purchasing weapons from abroad.
The Karen Peace Support Network supports the findings and recommendations of the Fact-Finding Mission. We urge members of the international community to implement the recommendations, including imposing of sanctions on military companies and arms embargo.
As Karen people who have been subjected to military attacks and repression for decades, we believe any measures that will reduce the ability of the military to obtain arms will contribute towards peace. It will have a direct impact on the ground limiting their ability to wage war against civilian populations, and a political impact.
The Myanmar military is purchasing hundreds of millions of dollars of advanced new weaponry every year, despite Myanmar having no hostile neighbouring countries which constitute a security threat. The only purpose of these new weapons is for internal use, mostly against ethnic populations.
Countries wanting to support the peace process in Myanmar should impose these targeted sanctions on military-owned companies and an arms embargo as essential parts of that support.