In response to the announcement today by the European Council of EU sanctions against two military-controlled companies, Myanmar Economic Holdings Public Company Limited (MEHL) and Myanmar Economic Corporation Limited (MEC) along with ten members of the military ‘State Administration Council’, Clare Hammond, Senior Myanmar Campaigner at Global Witness said:
“Today’s imposition of sanctions by the EU against the Myanmar military’s two economic conglomerates, Myanma Economic Holdings Ltd. (MEHL) and Myanmar Economic Corporation (MEC), is a critical step in preventing revenues from flowing to the brutal and illegal junta, and brings the EU in line with the UK and US, which imposed sanctions on both conglomerates over the past month.
“However, to restrict the military’s access to resources and pressure the regime to release political prisoners, cease their violent campaign against the people of Myanmar, and return power to the elected civilian government, the EU and other governments need to do more to cut off the money keeping the military afloat. Next steps should include restricting natural gas payments by companies, including those from the EU, which provide the military with more than US$1 billion every year, and sanctioning state owned-enterprises, including Myanma Oil and Gas Enterprise, as well as Myanma Gems Enterprise and Myanma Timber Enterprise.
“The people of Myanmar, including civil society and the representatives of the elected government through the Committee Representing the Pyidaungsu Hluttaw (CPRH), are calling for governments to take these actions and the EU must listen to the people who are suffering and sacrificing their lives on a daily basis in the fight for the future of their country.”