Myanmar gov’t leaders detained, military declares state of emergency for 1 year

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Myanmar State Counselor Aung San Suu Kyi and President U Win Myint. File photo: VCG

Myanmar’s State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi, President U Win Myint and other senior officials have been detained by the military early on Monday, Myo Nyunt, spokesperson of the ruling National League for Democracy (NLD), told Xinhua.

“I received internal reports about our state counsellor and president being taken by the military. As far as I was informed, Shan State’s Planning and Finance Minister U Soe Nyunt Lwin, Kayah state’s NLD chairman Thaung Htay and some NLD representatives of the Ayeyarwady region’s parliament have been detained,” the spokesperson said.

“Two members of Central Executive Committee of the party were taken and I am also waiting to be detained as I was informed by our members that my turn will come shortly,” he said.

Meanwhile, the Myanmar President’s Office declared a state of emergency which will last for one year.

The declaration signed by First Vice President U Myint Swe, who is serving as the acting president, was announced on the military-owned Myawady TV.

The state power will be handed over to Commander-in-Chief of Defense Services Min Aung Hlaing, the TV said in a statement.

The state-run Radio and Television (MRTV) said on its social media that it was no longer working on Monday morning.

Telecommunications in capital city of Nay Pyi Taw and some other regions and states have also been cut off.

The military said that there was massive voting fraud in the parliamentary elections in November last year, and demanded postponement of new parliamentary sessions. The Union Election Commission last week dismissed the allegations.

The first regular session of the new parliament sessions was scheduled to begin with convening the House of Representatives on Monday, the House of Nationalities on Tuesday and the Union Parliamentary session on Feb. 5.

The upcoming parliamentary sessions will elect speakers for both houses of the parliament, form parliamentary committees, and elect the president and vice presidents of Myanmar.

Myanmar held multi-party general elections on Nov. 8 last year and the ruling NLD won the majority of seats in both houses of the Union Parliament.

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