UPDATE - Most Envoys At UNHRC Condemn Military Coup In Myanmar, Call For Release Of Detainees

UPDATE - Most Envoys at UNHRC Condemn Military Coup in Myanmar, Call for Release of Detainees

MOSCOW (UrduPoint News / Sputnik - 12th February, 2021) An overwhelming majority of countries condemned the recent military coup in Myanmar and called for the immediate release of all detained government officials and lawmakers during the Friday session at the UN Human Rights Council (HRC).

On February 1, Myanmar faced a coup as the military arrested State Counselor Aung San Suu Kyi and other top officials after accusing them of election fraud. The military declared a state of emergency for one year, pledging to hold a new election after it expires.

The UNHRC is holding a special session "the Human Rights Implications of the Crisis in Myanmar" after a joint request by the United Kingdom and the European Union. A draft resolution, seen by Sputnik, calls for releasing all those detained and lifting the state of emergency.

During the session, US Charge d'Affaires Mark Cassayre called for targeted sanctions against military coup leaders.

"We ask all council members to join the United States and others to: one urge the military to immediately release all those unjustly detained, including politicians, civil society representatives, journalists, foreign nationals and human rights defenders. Two urge the military and police to restore power to the democratically elected government ... Three urge the military to lift all restrictions on access to information .... Four join us in promoting accountability for those responsible for the coup, including through targeted sanctions," Cassayre said.

Most other speakers made statements condemning the military takeover and called for the release of all political prisoners in Myanmar.

In particular, Canada strongly rejected the Myanmar military's claims of electoral fraud during the November general elections, the Netherlands called for the unconditional release of all detained government officials, and Norway voiced concerns about restrictions on the internet and media freedom.

ASEAN countries, including Malaysia, Vietnam and Laos, mentioned that political stability in all member states, including Myanmar, is vital for regional development.

Several countries, among them Ireland and Qatar, voiced concerns about the humanitarian situation in Myanmar and said that the coup may increase pressure on the vulnerable populations, including Rohingya Muslims.

A number of prominent non-governmental organizations, including Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch (HRW), also condemned the military coup in Myanmar and arbitrary detentions during the HRC session.

HRW spokesman called on the UNHRC to adopt the resolution that will "advance the accountability" of coup leaders and urged countries to apply targeted sanctions at those responsible for the military takeover in Myanmar.