The Council today decided to sanction 10 individuals and two military-controlled companies, Myanmar Economic Holdings Public Company Limited (MEHL) and Myanmar Economic Corporation Limited (MEC) in relation to the military coup staged in Myanmar/Burma on 1 February 2021, and the ensuing military and police repression against peaceful demonstrators. The decision was taken by written procedure.
The individuals targeted by sanctions are all responsible for undermining democracy and the rule of law in Myanmar/Burma, and for repressive decisions and serious human rights violations. The two sanctioned entities are large conglomerates that operate in many sectors of Myanmar’s economy and are owned and controlled by the Myanmar Armed Forces (Tatmadaw), and provide revenue for it. The adopted sanctions specifically target the economic interests of Myanmar’s military regime, which is responsible for the overthrow of Burma’s democratically elected government. Sanctions are crafted in such a way to avoid undue harm to the people of Myanmar.
Today’s decision is a sign of the EU’s unity and determination in condemning the brutal actions of the military junta, and aims at effecting change in the junta’s leadership. Today’s decision also sends a clear message to the military leadership: continuing on the current path will only bring further suffering and will never grant any legitimacy.
Restrictive measures, which now apply to a total of 35 individuals and two companies, include a travel ban and an asset freeze. In addition, EU citizens and companies are forbidden from making funds available to the listed individuals and entities.
Pre-existing EU restrictive measures also remain in place. These include an embargo on arms and equipment that can be used for internal repression, an export ban on dual-use goods for use by the military and border guard police, export restrictions on equipment for monitoring communications that could be used for internal repression, and a prohibition on military training for and military cooperation with the Tatmadaw.
EU restrictive measures add to the withholding of financial assistance directly going to the government and the freezing of all assistance to government bodies that may be seen as legitimising the junta.
The EU remains a steadfast supporter of Myanmar/Burma’s people and of the country’s democratic transition. As a tangible sign of this support, the European Commission has recently allocated a further EUR 9 million in emergency humanitarian aid to assist those in need. Since 1994, the EU has provided €287 million in humanitarian aid to Myanmar, with €20.5 million allocated in 2021 so far. The EU works with trusted and independent humanitarian partners to address the protection, food, nutrition and health needs of the most vulnerable people, particularly in Rakhine, Chin, Kachin and Shan states.
The relevant legal acts, including the names of the persons and entities concerned, have been published in the Official Journal.